Apr 3, 2024 - News

Des Moines' city manager Scott Sanders resigns

A photo of Des Moines City Manager Scott Sanders.

Des Moines city manager Scott Sanders is an ISU grad and former finance director for the city. Photo: Courtesy of the city of DSM

DSM city manager Scott Sanders announced his resignation in a staff memo yesterday, effective in six months.

Why it matters: He is the primary advisor to City Council, responsible for managing day-to-day business of the largest municipality in Iowa.

Catch up fast: Sanders was appointed to his current position by the council in 2014 following the retirement of Rick Clark.

  • He managed during some of DSM's most challenging times in recent decades — including floods in 2018 and the pandemic.
  • Sanders was consistently awarded pay increases by the council following annual reviews — from $195K when he started to just over $310,000 in the current fiscal year.

Yes, but: Some advocates of police reforms voiced frustration with his work and called for his resignation in 2021.

The intrigue: Sanders' memo did not detail his specific future plans but said he's looking forward to a new chapter in life that "fully prioritizes my family and my health."

  • His work will not waiver in the remaining months that he's on the job, he wrote. He did not respond to Axios' request for comment.

What they're saying: Mayor Connie Boesen called Tuesday "a bittersweet day" and wished Sanders the best, she said in a statement.

  • The council will soon begin a recruitment process for his replacement, Boesen said.
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