County names new budget chief

Newly appointed Kitsap County Administrative Services Director Shawn Gabriel - courtesy photo
Newly appointed Kitsap County Administrative Services Director Shawn Gabriel
— image credit: courtesy photo

After a lengthy search, Kitsap County has hired the deputy city manager of North Miami Beach as its new administrative services director, replacing Ben Holland.

“I am very excited about this opportunity to work in the Kitsap Community,” said Shawn Gabriel, whose appointment was announced on Monday. “I am looking to bring something different to the table.”

Holland officially retired in May, but has provided input into the development of next year’s budget.

Gabriel was one of 22 candidates who applied for the position. The hiring process began in May and was conducted by an outside search firm.

Gabriel is aware of Kitsap County’s budget restrictions and feels that he can help develop ways to bring expenditures in line with revenues. He intends to continue Holland’s public outreach programs, and said that developing staff morale was one of his highest priorities.

“We will need to look at all our revenue streams,” Gabriel said. “It is a balancing act, meeting the needs of the community while not exceeding what we can afford.”

He said he will spend much of his initial time in Kitsap County observing and ”getting my arms around exactly what is taking place.”

Gabriel, 37, will be the youngest department head in the county. He has a has over 15 years experience in public administration, finance and budgeting, capital project management, grant adminstration and economic development.

He began working for North Miami Beach in 2001 as assistant director of public services. Prior to that he worked as principal planner for Dade County.

Gabriel is scheduled to begin work on Sept. 15. He is relocating his wife and two small children, but has not decided exactly where they will live.

Gabriel has always lived on the east coast. His wife hails from Seattle, and the family has been considering relocation for eight years.

In his new position Gabriel will oversee 52 employees and be responsible for an annual budget that exceeds $300 million.

His salary will be $109,200 per year.

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