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News / Politics / Clark County Politics

Longtime Vancouver city manager will retire in October

By William Seekamp, Columbian staff writer
Published: February 27, 2024, 4:47pm
3 Photos
Vancouver City Manager Eric Holmes, right, walks with U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, center, during a Feb. 13 tour of the Vancouver waterfront.
Vancouver City Manager Eric Holmes, right, walks with U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, center, during a Feb. 13 tour of the Vancouver waterfront. (Taylor Balkom/The Columbian files) Photo Gallery

After 14 years as Vancouver city manager, Eric Holmes is retiring. His last day will be Oct. 11.

“My wife and I have decided that we’re ready to move into our next chapter of life and we’re in a position because of my long career in public service to be able to do that,” Holmes said. “The life that we want to live is incompatible with continuing at the city.”

Holmes, 54, has worked for the city since 2007. Before that, he was the city manager of Battle Ground.

Holmes anticipates staying in Vancouver and transitioning to the private sector.

“I’m young enough that I anticipate that part of our next chapter will be remaining professionally engaged,” Holmes said. “I don’t anticipate that to be in the public sector — probably some consulting work and strategic advising, but I haven’t figured out any details on it.”

Holmes said he will provide close support to the city council as it searches for his replacement.

In December, Vancouver city councilors gave Holmes an 8.5 percent raise, or $27,000 annually, bumping his pay to $344,000.

During Holmes’ tenure as city manager, Vancouver rapidly became more urban. The city guided the The Waterfront Vancouver development project to fruition, and continued the push for replacement of the Interstate 5 Bridge replacement.

“Serving Vancouver has been the most rich and rewarding experience of my career,” Holmes said. “I’ve lived here for almost 30 years, my wife has lived here her whole life, we raised our family here, and the ability to play a role in leading change that has enriched this community has been just remarkably rewarding and a gift.”

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