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Palm Coast Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021 8 months ago

Jorge Salinas begins 294-hour 'boot camp' to learn chief of staff role

Formerly of Oregon, Salinas has moved to Flagler County to be No. 2 in command for Flagler County.
by: Brian McMillan Executive Editor

Jorge Salinas began his new job as chief of staff, second in command under Flagler County Administrator Jerry Cameron, on Jan. 5. His first task: 294 hours of meetings.

“Mr. Cameron has created what I’m calling boot camp for a chief of staff,” Salinas said in an interview with the Palm Coast Observer in his office, the walls of which were still bare. “It’s a rigorous plan, where I’m going to be meeting with each of the departments and learning how they interact and how they contribute to the mission for the county.”

The 294 hours are going to be spread out over a month or so and include staff members as well as other leaders in the community, so that Salinas can determine who has what resources to solve any problem that might arise in the future.

For example Salinas met with Flagler Executive Airport Director Roy Sieger for about four hours; he went on a tour of eight or nine Flagler County parks with Parks and Recreation Manager Frank Barbuti; and he spent half a day with Scott Simon, code enforcement officer.

With each stop, Silanas wrote observations in a black notebook; he then typed up his conclusions at the end of each day, including possible issues to follow up with later.

Salinas moved to Flagler County on Dec. 1 with his wife. Previously, he was the deputy city manager and chief information officer for Albany, Oregon, where the government earned distinction for being transparent to the residents.

"Jorge’s greatest quality is his 'cultural fit,'" Cameron said in an email to the Observer. "He has plenty of technical abilities, but his qualities as a leader and team builder are what got him the job."

Cameron has announced that he plans to retire sometime in mid-2021, and Salinas feels he will be ready to step in as interim until the County Commission decides on a long-term solution.


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