HERCULES -- Deputy City Manager Liz Warmerdam has taken the position of assistant city manager in Alameda, Hercules City Manager Steve Duran announced Monday. Her last day at Hercules City Hall will be Jan. 11.
Warmerdam, who also was Hercules' human resources director, will replace Lisa Goldman, who left Alameda to become city manager of Burlingame.
Warmerdam, who served several months as Hercules interim city manager last year, has held several posts in Hercules as both an employee and contractor during an eventful and sometimes chaotic decade that culminated in the city's financial meltdown under then-City Manager Nelson Oliva, who stepped down in January 2011.
In an email to top city officials Monday, Duran thanked Warmerdam for "her exemplary service to the city of Hercules and the people of Hercules."
"We should all be very proud of Liz and thankful for all she has done for Hercules," Duran wrote. "Through this city's most tumultuous time, Liz has stepped up and taken on so many different and varied responsibilities that it is amazing. Liz will truly be missed; but though I wish she would be here for the foreseeable future, I am very happy for Liz and know that this is a good choice for her and her family."
Warmerdam's new job will be something of a homecoming to Alameda City Hall; she began her municipal career there in late 1997 as a management analyst, she said.
She later worked at Pinole City Hall, becoming assistant to then-City Manager Marc Grisham. She moved over to Hercules City Hall in December 2003 to become assistant city manager under Mike Sakamoto, taking charge of the Parks and Recreation and Public Works departments and the administrative division.
Warmerdam resigned as assistant city manager in 2006 but continued under contract with the city as project manager for the construction of the Hercules branch of the Contra Costa County Library, which opened in late 2006; she remained as project manager in 2007 to help raise funds for the city's portion of the cost.
In 2008 and 2009, as a planning consultant for Hercules, Warmerdam was project manager for the 2009 Updated Redevelopment Plan. She also did entitlement work for the Sycamore Crossing project and handled the environmental impact report for the Hercules Bayfront project. She went back on the city's employee payroll in late 2010, when then-interim City Manager Charlie Long appointed her finance director. In July 2011, Warmerdam became interim city manager, succeeding then-interim City Manager Fred Deltorchio, who resigned.
Duran began as city manager in October 2011; he appointed Warmerdam deputy city manager shortly after.
Most top Hercules officials from the Sakamoto and Oliva eras have left. In an interview with this newspaper Monday, Warmerdam attributed the fact that she survived unscathed through the tumult to "one word: integrity."
"And perseverance," she added.
"People trusted me," she said. "I didn't pull any punches. I told people what I thought. I was honest. I have a pretty good work ethic."
Regarding Oliva's financial dealings, which included steering more than $3 million in no-bid contracts to his family company during his four-year tenure as Hercules city manager, Warmerdam said, "None of us knew exactly the extent that this was going on."
She noted that she was a consultant, not a direct employee, during Oliva's tenure, except for the last three months, when Long hired her as finance director while Oliva was on medical leave.
Contact Tom Lochner at 510-262-2760. Follow him at twitter.com/tomlochner.