Other News on the GM Selection Process

Do you notice the remarkable difference between the selection process for LA's Animal Services GM as compared to the selection and vetting process for the Supreme Court?

Already a dozen names suggested as on Obama's "short list" have been mentioned, commented on, pilloried, glorified, and discussed. Soon we'll know every decision ever made by the final chosen candidate.

But the GM candidates? Not so much. The "transparency" is about the same as all other department GM selections--not so much.

Why can't the City provide the same level of transparency as a Secretary of State or a Supreme Court Justice?

After the Mayor selects his GM, there will be a pro forma vetting and confirmation by Council, with maybe one or two councilmembers voicing some objections if the candidate is guaranteed to be bland.

As Jerry Greenwalt said, there was only one criteria absolutely required of the new Animal Services GM: Don't embarrass the Mayor, which means Antonio and the selection process as a whole, will be directed towards selecting safety and predictability, not performance.

Everyone I talk to at Animal Services says the department is better run than when Boks was GM, and most, three years ago said the department under Boks was better run than before Boks came. 

The department may be better run, more efficient, whatever, but the numbers do not reflect a reality of a better run LAAS. Isn't this how we measure the success or failure of the department and any new GM--has the killing gone down significantly? The Mayor defines success differently. Has the GM caused him any problems?

Also, notice, no one talks about goals for the department anymore. The strategic plan does not define No-Kill, nor does it affix benchmarks or milestones to attaining it.

Several well known candidates have already received their rejection slips, including Laura Beth Heisen, and Dr. Conrad, the vet who pushed through anti-declaw legislation is several municipalities. No reason was given for the rejection naturally. She feels it was due to lack of shelter experience.

Should any of the other candidates also want to contact me about their experience, I welcome it.

Also, I understand that Kathy Davis who vowed she was not interested in the job, changed her mind and has applied for it, but submitted her application after the deadline. I also here this allegation is untrue.


Anonymous said...

I would suggest that all GM applicants must pass a psychological evaluation, maybe even a drug/alcohol test. We don't need any more people like Ed Boks.

Anonymous said...

psychological evaluation, how about a lie detector test? The Boks hiring was an embarrassment. A grade school child could have thought out the recruitment proces better than the Mayor did.

Anonymous said...

Your insistence on "outing" candidates so everyone knows who they are during the process overlooks one key point. It would pretty much guarantee that nobody would apply who has a current job - running shelters or doing anything else - that they want to keep if they don't get the GM job.

It's not the same as media speculation about people who already work for the federal court system or White House being considered for the Supreme Court (or people who already work for LAPD being considered for police chief). Talking about them in public doesn't jeopardize their current employment status.

Is our mania for destroying people's careers so overpowering that common sense is flushed down the toilet? Sure hope not.

Ed Muzika said...

Nonsense. This is purely a bogus reason to keep the whole operation secret and non-transparent.

You think no one would apply for a $160,000 job because their current boss might hear they were applying for the most challenging position in animal control in the country?

Was Heisen's job ever in jeapardy or Kathy's?

That is a bullshit reason to keep everything in the Mayor's office, under tight control.

A lot of the animal community probably was upset with the Heisen rejection, and I am sure a lot are upset that Kathy applied.

In the meantime, the public--the LA animal community--is having absolutely no input into candidate evaluation.

You like it that way and says that is the way the Mayor handles every dept.

And, with all the top government jobs, it is far more than speculation. They get the info through official and unofficial leaks. But the Mayor's office treats every little bit of information as top secret, for insiders only. That way, it allows you to laugh at the speculations of the likes of me who has little "official" information to release.