We’re not exactly sure why it took nearly a month to make it official, but Brookfield’s village board recognized a good thing when they saw it and on Monday officially hired the village’s longtime assistant manager, Keith Sbiral, as Brookfield’s new village manager.
Sbiral had this opportunity coming.
Since he began working in Brookfield in January 2006, he has been the point person on so many initiatives, it’s tough to remember all of them. It could be argued that Sbiral was pulled in too many directions at times.
But the result is Brookfield’s new manager is someone with a detailed, intimate knowledge of how all aspect of village hall operations function, what its strengths are and what weaknesses must be overcome.
It’ll be interesting to see how Sbiral’s style differs from his predecessor, Riccardo Ginex. After all, Sbiral was a workhorse for the past nine years, tackling everything from budgeting to managing the building and finance departments. All the technology upgrades accomplished inside village hall were led by Sbiral. He navigated the TIF creation process for village staff.
With all of that hands-on experience, just how much will he be willing or able to delegate as the manager? One thing that’ll need almost immediate delegation is direction of the building department.
The past 12 months have seen a spike in both residential and commercial development. There’s now a planner on board again, which will help. But the building department is going to need an experienced pro to make sure economic development and community development generally continue to be a focus.
And, as he heads off to Oak Brook, we wish Ginex the best.
While many residents complained that Ginex was a distant figure during his time with the village, the culture inside village hall changed dramatically for the better. He leaves having created a professional organization, one focused on village management and not politics.
He was responsible for hiring all of the department directors who presently serve the village. And while there may have been some rough patches, most significantly during the economic downturn from 2008-2010, Ginex managed make sure the village provided the services it needed even in the face of personnel cuts and, at-times, some unhappy employees.
And, of course, Ginex was responsible for allowing Sbiral to grow and tackle so many aspects of village government. As a result, Brookfield organically grew a village manager who will be able to step into Ginex’s shoes without missing a beat.
Good luck to both men as they enter new chapters in their respective careers.