City Manager

RICK CHAFFIN – BIO

Rick began serving as the City Manager of Gunter in June 2020.  He has more than 25 years of local government experience serving as a Deputy City Manager or City Manager in small and medium-sized cities with populations ranging from 6,700 to 155,000.

Rick has managed or overseen virtually every department in a city at one time or another and has a broad base of experience.  He has experience in strategic planning, organizational development, long-range planning, capital projects planning and budgeting, parks and recreation, public works and police and fire.  While experienced, he enjoys new environments and is always learning new and innovative approaches to solving problems.

Rick is a member of the Texas City Manager’s Association (TCMA) and a member of the International City Manager’s Association (ICMA).  He is a former President of Region 5 – TCMA and a former member of TCMA Ethics Committee and Technology Committee.  He has served as chair and a member of numerous local business and civic organizations.

 

LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT PHILOSOPHY

He is dedicated, tactfully aggressive and fiscally responsible.  He is a consensus builder and believes in participatory management with strong leadership.  He is honest, open, and committed to integrity in all relationships and believes that employees of the city are its most important resource and that they should always be treated with dignity and respect.  He believes in listening and staying in touch with citizens, being good stewards of public tax dollars and being responsive and sensitive to their needs.  He believes that long-range planning, particularly in growing communities, and training and innovation are vital to an organization’s success.

He is energetic, enthusiastic, and passionate with a strong team-orientation.  He is a visionary yet grounded in practicality.  He strives to lead, manage, coach, train, and mentor employees to be the best they can be while supporting them and holding them accountable for results.

He works collaboratively and in a mutually respectful manner with the Mayor and City Council recognizing that they are the policymakers and his job is to implement their decisions.  He has a high regard for the challenges that the Mayor and City Council faces and provides the best recommendations possible and committed to working in harmony and in partnership with them.

 

EDUCATIONAL BACKGROUND

He has a Master’s Degree in Urban Affairs from Virginia Tech and a Bachelor of Science in Political Science from The University of Texas at Tyler.  He also is a graduate of the Senior Executive Institute of the University of Virginia, the Public Executive Institute of the University of Texas, and the Texas Municipal Leadership Academy.  Additionally, he has certificates in Economic Development from the University of Oklahoma and Texas A&M University.

He has been a presenter and speaker on topics such as Communication and Marketing, Growth and Development for Small Cities and Strategic Planning and Budgeting.  He has also presented to public administration program graduate students regarding budgeting and capital improvements programs.

 

PERSONAL

Rick is engaged to Melissa and has two daughters, Taylor and Lauren, ages 24 and 21.  Taylor graduated from the University of Arkansas and lives in Grapevine and is a financial analyst at Fidelity in Westlake.  Lauren is an upcoming senior at Texas State University and plans to attend law school upon graduation.  Melissa has a son, Alex, who is an upcoming senior at McKinney North High School.  Upon graduation, he intends to join the U.S. Marine Corp.

Rick and Melissa enjoy traveling, exercising, movies and plays, live music, playing golf and basketball and spending time with their respective families.  They also enjoy their two new rescue boxer-mix puppies: Luca and Bella.   Rick is a U.S. Army veteran with four years of active duty service as an army intelligence analyst.

 

STRATEGIC FOCUS AREAS

Executive Leadership

Strategic Planning

Organizational Development

Negotiation

Financial Management

Team Building

Citizen Engagement

Capital Projects Planning