The new Mission city administrator is coming from Junction City, Kansas, but has only been out of the KC metro for a little more than three years.
Gerry Vernon has been the city manager in Junction City since early 2010, but moved there from Smithville, Mo. where he spent 13 years working his way up to city administrator. Mission Mayor Laura McConwell said she and the city council interviewed Vernon and five other finalists last week at the conclusion of a national search conducted over the last four months that drew 35 applications.
Vernon, 54, succeeds Mike Scanlon, who left the city in December to take the city manager’s job in Basalt, Colo. The council will vote on Vernon’s employment May 15 and a community reception will be held for him at the council meeting that night. He will start work in Mission on June 3.
Vernon is a native of Colby, Kansas, where he worked in the street department and fire department. In Smithville, he started in the public works department, “working his way through the ranks.” “I miss the area and wanted to get back,” Vernon said. “I am excited about returning to the KC metro.”
Vernon has a bachelor’s from Kansas State and a master’s in public administration from KU. He said his public works experience should be valuable in Mission with the number of projects currently under way.
“Great progress is made when you give employees the right tools,” Vernon said describing his management philosophy. He is a certified manager and member of the International City/County Managers Association.
“Vernon’s experience will allow him to hit the ground running,” McConwell said. “His team approach and commitment to community engagement and communication, staff support and development are values that will benefit Mission.”