A couple years back, Scotts Valley was reeling from a series of departures, while struggling to attract new staff during the Covid-19 pandemic.
But now, with two key hires—Building Official Nelson Alfaro and Public Works Director Bret Swain—the City has filled 93% of its roster.
“Scotts Valley will benefit from the extensive education and experience both Bret and Nelson bring to our City,” said City Manager Mali LaGoe in a release. “I’m looking forward to working with both of them.”
Now, just four seats remain empty—out of a total of 70 budgeted positions.
“We’re actively recruiting for these remaining four positions,” LaGoe said. “It’s been a goal in 2023 to get the city back to full staffing and we’re almost there.”
Alfaro will be joining Scotts Valley as the full-time building official. He is scheduled to start Nov. 13. The certified building official, with 12 years of experience in the building inspection industry, most recently served as the building official for the County of San Benito.
Alfaro graduated from Cabrillo College with an Associate Degree in Science in Building Inspection and has earned 16 professional ICC certifications in building inspections.
Scotts Valley officials say Nelson shares the City’s value in providing first-class customer service and is looking forward to working closer to home. After all, he lives in Soquel with his wife and has three college-aged children.
Swain, the new public works director, was raised in the Monterey Bay area, attending North Salinas High School.
He holds a Bachelor of Science with a double major from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in Physical Sciences (with an emphasis in biology and environmental chemistry) and Soil Science (with a concentration in environmental science)
In addition, he holds a Master of Science from Fresno State in Civil Engineering focused in environmental and geotechnical engineering, and an MBA from UC Davis focused on finance and general management.
Swain has over 26 years of experience in civil and environmental engineering, with nearly 14 years of consulting for firms such as URS and AECOM.
He also has over 12 years of experience as a senior engineer with public agencies, including East Palo Alto, Manteca and Moraga, and he holds professional engineering licenses in civil engineering and in chemical engineering and a LSIT.
Swain, who starts Nov. 20, says he’s excited to put his experience in stormwater and wastewater capital project delivery to work to lead the Public Works Department.