Find Great People of Greenville, SC, will be charged with finding a great city manager for Greensboro following action by the City Council on Thursday, July 15.

The City Council traditionally doesn’t take votes at work sessions, but Find Great People was recommended by city staff and, after hearing their presentation, no councilmember voiced an objection to contracting with the company to find, vet and present city manager candidates to the City Council.

Former Greensboro City Manager David Parrish resigned effective June 30.

The estimated timeline was four to five months, so in early December, about the time filing opens for the City Council election, the council should be making a decision.

As one would expect, most of the questions were asked by Councilmember Sharon Hightower, and most of them were about diversity.

Hightower had already been assured that the diversity of candidates would mirror the diversity of Greensboro after complaining that, at the minimum, the candidate list would have 33 percent women and minorities.

Hightower said, “I want to go back to the 33 percent.  I’m very concerned about your profile that is basically 67 percent white male, 33 percent women and 33 percent minority.  That’s a concern for me.”

Christin Mack from Find Great People said, “Our goal is to have as diverse a slate as we can put together. We really work towards making the slate reflect the demographics of the community.  That’s the floor not the goal.”

Councilmember Nancy Hoffmann said, “I think diversity is very important to this entire council, to all of us.  If we are setting these goals at 50 percent or 60 percent diversity, are you then creating an opportunity for missing some of the best candidates out there?  We want the best candidate possible for this position.”

The process will start with Find Great People meeting with stakeholders and getting to know the community and that could begin as early as next week.

Interim City Manager Chris Wilson said that he would sign the contract to get the process going either Thursday or Friday.