The city manager of Glendale this week announced that he will soon retire, making the second resignation of a top-ranking city official this month.
James M. Rez, 62, who has worked for the city for 30 years, told the City Council Tuesday that he expects to retire this spring.
"My time has come to move on to something else," he said in an interview. "It was a very difficult decision, but I am looking forward to a less-stressful period in my life."
Gerald J. Jamriska resigned as planning director Feb. 5 to accept the position of assistant planning director for San Diego County. Jamriska, 49, had worked for Glendale for 17 years. John McKenna, 43, former city zoning administrator, was named last week to succeed Jamriska.
Rez said he will retain his position for a month or more to give the city time to seek a successor.
Rez has served as city manager since Dec. 1, 1983, when he was selected from more than 60 candidates from throughout the United States and Canada who had sought to succeed former manager Hugh McKinley.
Plans to Travel
While Rez did not rule out the possibility that he may accept another position in business, he said, "I'm not going to do anything for a while. I want to have the freedom to pack up and go fishing." He said he and his wife also plan to travel.
Rez said he will continue to live in Glendale, his home since 1951. While he was born and raised in Santa Ana, he said, "This city is as much my home as I ever had. I was married here, my kids were born here and went to school here. My wife and I have no intention of leaving Glendale."
Rez first worked for Glendale as an intern in the city personnel department while studying political science at Occidental College, where he graduated in 1949. He served as assistant personnel director in Glendale from 1953 until 1959, when he returned to Orange County to serve as personnel director of his hometown of Santa Ana and the Newport-Mesa Unified School District.
Rez came back to Glendale in 1967 as the city personnel director and was promoted to assistant city manager in 1974.