Assistant City Manager Jeremy Frimond, born and raised in Laguna Beach, should be on the shortlist of candidates for our new city manager.
That is, if he wants the job, although I’m certain he can navigate the initial barrage of doubters, that’s bound to occur due to recent turmoil.
His résumé as an employee since 2003 includes his 10-year career as a beach guard, and then he moved up to our marine protection officer (MPO) position in the Marine Safety Department.
He became a leader in the marine protected area collaborations and information sharing between California coastal city staff.
He moved up to his current position as assistant to the city manager in 2018.
He has a bachelor’s in zoology from UC Santa Barbara and a master’s in public administration from CSU Long Beach.
On a personal note, I met him on the beach around 2005, and he, like all the young men and women who serve and protect in the MSD, was always upbeat, personable and vigilant for those in distress.
I ran into him down in Blue Lagoon right after he was appointed MPO, and he seemed humbled by my praise and support.
His years as our MPO amplified and added to his love of the ocean, so it’s no surprise to read about his avid attraction and knowledge regarding sharks.
Neither is his history with the tourism industry (Discovery). After all, he grew up in a year-round visitor destination.
His core values, those of a lover of the Pacific and keeping it healthy for future generations, are still intact.
After our former CM went out City Hall doors, I called for someone with great knowledge and experience with ocean and beach issues.
Someone who had as one of their goals the bettering and improving of our oft-times contentious relationship with the California Coastal Commission.
The other night, when I walked into council chambers for the first time in about 15 years, I walked over to say hello to Captain Kai Bond of our MSD, another native son I hadn’t seen since before the Covid lockdown.
Jeremy’s face lit up. He recognized me, even though I’d grown a scruffy beard.
So I spoke briefly with him first, before Kai.
Same personable, high-energy Jeremy. That’s another example of added value: He’d be a breath of fresh air, albeit a locally generated breeze, so I encourage our council to look within. The right person for the job might already be in Chambers.
Maybe we don’t need to look any further. The answer’s right under our noses!
Roger Butow, Laguna Beach