Nelson leads Renne Public Management Group’s Financial Management, Human Resource, Executive Search and Complex Project Management practice areas, and serves as Executive Director.
Nelson has over 31-years of assisting clients and local governments in addressing complex issues. Nelson provides clients with strategic advice and analysis on organizational issues and he is able to provide practical recommendations and solutions to challenges facing government today. Additionally, Nelson’s consulting and professional work experience has honed his facilitation and implementation expertise that assists clients in articulating and achieving their goals.
Nelson’s services to public sector clients include:
- city manager and city attorney executive search;
- strategic planning/workplan for organizations and governing bodies;
- new city manager/city attorney/city council onboarding;
- city manager and city attorney performance evaluations;
- facilitation and conflict resolution;
- fiscal and operational analysis;
- complex project management, including analysis and negotiations; and
- organizational assessments, including alternative service delivery options for local governments, service realignment and enhancement, and special studies.
Prior to RPMG, Nelson served the Cities of Pleasanton, Campbell, San Dimas and Hayward in various leadership and management capacities, including as City Manager, Assistant City Manager, Deputy City Manager, and Director of Human Resources and Labor Relations. He served 17-years as the City Manager of Pleasanton where in partnership with elected officials and community members he established the City as one of California’s premier municipalities. Some notable accomplishments include:
- Implementing sustainable fiscal policies to ensure the City’s short-and long-term service levels, pension liabilities, and infrastructure obligations were met.
- Developing and implementing short-term and long-term planning initiatives to ensure balanced and quality growth, preservation of open space, improved traffic circulation, upgraded infrastructure, and enhanced community amenities.
- Developed and implemented initiatives, strategies and programs which resulted in the economic growth and transformation of Pleasanton into an employment center for the Bay Area, including the successful recruitment and expansion of major employers such as Workday, 10x Genomics, Clorox, Roche Molecular, Veeva and Fischer Scientific.
- Securing the financing and completion of major capital improvements, including:
- Callippe Golf Course and Open Space Preserve, 300 acres – $40 million
- Patelco Sports Complex at Bernal Community Park, 80 acres – $24 million
- Downtown Arts Center, 215 seats, classrooms and art gallery – $16 million
- Kottinger Gardens Affordable Housing Complex, 300 units – $35 million
- New Fire Station #4 and North Pleasanton Police Station – $13 million
- New Water Treatment Facilities, including 10 miles of Recycled Water Infrastructure – $22 million
Throughout his career, Nelson has been active in, and held leadership roles with, organizations that support and further the role of local government managers, including the League of California Cities and ICMA. Nelson has presented at League of California Cities on a wide variety of subjects. His most recent presentations focus on newly elected mayors and city councils – How to Communicate Effectively with the City Manager and City staff and Managing Conflict in Collaboration with Your City Manager and City Attorney. During his tenure in Pleasanton, the City was the recipient of four Helen Putnam Awards for Excellence in Financial Management, Public Safety, Youth-In-Government and Land Use Planning. He has mentored aspiring City Managers, County Executives, and Non-Profit Leaders and taught the art and science of finance and budgeting to newly elected officials and to graduate students at local universities, including Stanford and Cal-State East Bay.
Nelson currently holds leadership roles with various community organizations in the San Francisco East Bay-Tri-Valley area, including serving as Interim Chief Executive Officer of the Three Valleys Community Foundation and serves on the Community Advisory Relations Board for Stanford Health-Valley Care Hospital.
Nelson has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and Master’s Degree in Public Administration from California State University, East Bay. He is also a graduate of the Harvard Kennedy School-Senior Executives in State and Local Government Program.