Oklahoma City Manager Craig Freeman on Monday (April 22) announced the selection of Aubrey McDermid and Kenton Tsoodle as the next Assistant City Managers.
The City has three Assistant City Manager positions, the second-highest-ranking position on staff. McDermid is the City’s Planning Director and Tsoodle is the interim Finance Director. Their official starting date in their new positions will be Friday, May 3.
“Aubrey and Kenny were selected from a highly qualified group of applicants, including many leaders within the City organization,” said Freeman. “I’m looking forward to putting their leadership skills to work in new roles to continue to advance Oklahoma City’s progress.”
McDermid and Tsoodle will succeed Dennis Clowers who retired February 7) and M.T. Berry (who will retire May 30). Oklahoma City’s third Assistant City Manager is Laura Johnson, who has been in the position since 2011.
Each Assistant City Manager oversees a group of departments, and supervises the department directors. Freeman is reorganizing those groups.
Assistant City Managers report to the City Manager, who oversees day-to-day operations, a staff of 4,803 employees and a budget of $1.57 billion. The City Manager reports to the City Council, at the top of Oklahoma City’s Council-Manager form of government.
Aubrey McDermid, 46, has overseen the Planning Department since 2014.
“I am proud of my deep Oklahoma City roots and genuinely love my city,” said McDermid. “It’s a privilege to have worked for the past two decades in the Planning Department, striving to make our home the best place to live, work, grow and enjoy life. I’m honored to serve as an Assistant City Manager and work with our dedicated city leaders, our amazing staff and fellow community members who share my passion for advancing our city.”
McDermid started her career with the City in 2000 as an Associate Planner, earning promotions to Senior Planner, Urban Redevelopment Specialist, Principal Planner and Assistant Director before becoming Planning Director. She previously worked in the private sector and academia, including at architecture/engineering firms, as the owner of a landscape design-build firm and at the University of Oklahoma’s College of Architecture.
She oversees the Planning Department’s staff of 46 and multiple plans, offices and programs within the department’s four divisions, including the City’s comprehensive plan (planokc) and pedestrian-bicycle master plan (bikewalkokc), the offices of Sustainability and Arts and Cultural Affairs, administration of Design Review and Historic Districts, Transportation Planning, Neighborhood and Commercial District Revitalization, the Strong Neighborhoods Initiative, the brownfields program, and the Housing and Community Development program, which supports multiple social and housing needs for low- to moderate-income residents, families and people experiencing homelessness.
McDermid is certified by the American Institute of Certified Planners, and is a member of the American Planning Association and Urban Land Institute. She graduated with honors from OU with a master’s degree in landscape architecture and a bachelor’s degree in environmental design.
McDermid and her extended family members are lifelong residents of the Oklahoma City area. She and her husband, Anthony, live downtown and enjoy experiencing all that Oklahoma City has to offer with Aubrey’s teenagers, Tate and Allison, and Anthony’s grown son Ian and his wife, Hailey.
Kenton Tsoodle, 43, has been the interim Finance Director since late last year when Freeman was promoted from that position to City Manager.
“This is an exciting opportunity for me, especially as someone who has lived here my whole life,” said Tsoodle. “It has been fun and rewarding to see how far Oklahoma City has come, and it’s a privilege to help us get where we’re going. We’ve got a great staff and we’re proud of the services we provide to our residents.”
Tsoodle began his career at the City in 2002 as a Management and Budget Analyst, earning promotions to Management and Budget Specialist, Assistant City Treasurer, Finance Business Manager and Assistant Finance Director. He had previously worked as an analyst in the private sector.
He oversees the Finance Department’s staff of 85 employees. As acting and Assistant Finance Director, he has been involved in coordinating the development and presentation of the City budget, managing the City’s debt, special projects, department planning, department policy development and more.
Tsoodle is a Certified Public Finance Officer and graduated with honors from Oklahoma Baptist University with bachelor’s degrees in business administration-international business and Spanish.
Tsoodle and his wife, Sara, have two children, Sawyer and Lyla.