Saturday, March 21, 1998
Vice mayor eyes new job
City manager may leave Hamilton

BY JOHN ECKBERG
The Cincinnati Enquirer

HAMILTON - Vice-Mayor Adolf Olivas has realigned his career sights and is taking aim at the city manager job.

The position is held by Hal Shepherd, who is a finalist to be city manager in Greeley, Colo.

His potential departure has led Mr. Olivas, a former mayor, to consider a career change.

''If indeed our city manager is leaving - and I hope he isn't - I have been been approached by employees of the city as to whether I would apply,'' Mr. Olivas said. ''I'm not going to say no at this moment.

''It is an intriguing possibility, and it is an area that I have at least a passing familiarity with. I hadn't given it much thought until now.''

In the past week, he has brought up his interest in the position on at least two occasions when other council members were present. Councilman Richard Holzberger said Mr. Olivas, elected councilman or mayor since 1985, spoke of his interest in the position to Mr. Holzberger on Thursday.

On Friday, after a civics day assembly at Hamilton High School, Mr. Olivas also told council members George McNally and Daniel Crank that he was considering the job.

''He's putting the feelers out,'' Mr. Holzberger said.

''I said if you're a candidate, put in a resume like everybody else,'' Mr. Crank said. ''If he wants to apply, he's more than welcome but I'm in favor of opening this up nationwide.''

Mr. McNally gave Mr. Olivas his endorsement.

''I told him I'd give him my vote on the first ballot,'' Mr. McNally said.

Mr. McNally said he would not support a nationwide search for a city manager. ''I don't support going outside the city limits,'' he said.

A graduate of Badin High School, the University of Cincinnati and University of Cincinnati law school, Mr. Olivas is vice president and secretary of the law firm Holbrock & Jonson Co.

The lifelong Hamilton resident is 42 and is a popular officeholder, serving on council since 1985. He holds a modern-day record for finishing in second place in council field races. He finished in second place in 1985, 1987, 1989, 1993, 1995 and 1997.

The father of four became mayor in 1989 and was elected mayor in 1991.

Mr. Shepherd, who was vacationing, could not be reached for comment about his employment options.