The Shafter Press - Serving the community since 1922

City manager hits ground running

In first days, Gonzalez manages emergency


Last updated 3/19/2020 at 6:26pm | View PDF

Jamie Stewart | The Shafter Press

Gabriel Gonzalez is looking forward to serving the city of Shafter.

"It has been a very eventful first two days."

This could be seen as a major understatement by Shafter's new city manager, Gabriel Gonzalez. Gonzalez began his tenure with the city on Monday. Just one day into his service, he was having to help plan a state of emergency plan with city staff and the City Council. "I am thankful for the wonderful staff that is here and I know that after this situation is resolved, we will work on keeping Shafter a great city."

Gonzalez began his municipal career in the city of Arvin, serving as finance director from 1995 to 2001. Gonzalez has over 15 years experience in the role of city manager and is excited about this opportunity in Shafter. "Shafter has always been on my radar. Even when I worked for Arvin, when John Guinn was city anager for Shafter, I knew that Shafter was going in the right direction and thought that it would be a great opportunity."

Gonzalez stepped into his new role and led the Council in creating an action plan to deal with the current COVID-19 situation. "I hate having to restrict our residents from contacting our staff and cutting or reducing some services here in town, but it is necessary for the health and well-being of our staff and the residents of Shafter."

Gonzalez was scheduled to have a welcome reception before the City Council meeting on Tuesday night, but that had to be postponed due to the recommendations from the CDC and Public Health Department.

"I have felt welcome since I arrived and can't wait to help the city of Shafter remain a city that is a model for other cities to be when they grow up."


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