Government & Politics  July 27, 2020

Boulder city manager Brautigam retiring in October

BOULDER — Boulder’s first female city manager is stepping down from her position, one she’s held longer than any predecessor in modern history. 

Jane Brautigam, who’s been Boulder’s top unelected official for 12 years, will retire effective Oct. 30, according to a city news release. 

Boulder city manager Jane Brautigam will retire Oct. 30. Courtesy city of Bould

“The time has come for me to step into the next journey in my life,” Brautigam said in the release.. “I am, and always will be, proud of what all of us together have achieved for the city of Boulder. The lessons I have learned here, the ethics and integrity I have seen embodied in all that we have done, the innovation and creativity that have been part of our approach and the commitment to inclusive, effective local government will always be with me.”


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Brautigam, president of the International City/County Managers Association, was recently named the 2020 city manager of the year by the Colorado City and County Managers Association.

“Jane did not just lead the city with a steady hand,” Boulder Mayor Sam Weaver said in a prepared statement.. “She sought to transform the culture, bringing together discrete departments with a variety of important community service functions, under the umbrella of one forward-looking, continuously improving organization. She empowered leaders at all levels and took on challenging issues, including structural racism and historic oppression, with a combination of courage and humility that lifted up everyone working with her. Closing out her inspirational career, Jane has helped pilot the city through the necessary responses to the urgent crisis of COVID-19 and its unprecedented impacts on our community. While I am sad to see Jane retire, I am grateful for the vibrant city organization she leaves as her legacy.”

Brautigam, a University of Pennsylvania Law School graduate whose experience includes stints as city manager and city attorney in Loveland and assistant county attorney for Boulder County, counts “recovery related to the 2013 flood and several wildfires; the exploration of municipalization and adoption of new climate goals; the creation of a homelessness strategy; critical infrastructure improvements to water/wastewater facilities and recreational facilities; revitalization of the civic area; design of a new North Boulder Library; and the adoption of key master plans, such as fire and open space and mountain parks” among her major accomplishments at the helm in Boulder, the city said. 

Brautigam chose to remain in her post until October in order to help oversee the launch of a search to find her successor, Boulder communication and engagement director Sarah Huntley told BizWest Monday. 

The first step is to hire a recruiting firm, which is expected to occur in the next few weeks. The recruiter would then launch a national search.

The city’s goal, Huntley said, is to have a new city manager in place by early 2021. The Boulder City Council could install an interim city manager to run operations between Brautigam’s departure in October and whenever a replacement is brought on board.


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Lucas High
A Maryland native, Lucas has worked at news agencies from Wyoming to South Carolina before putting roots down in Colorado.
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