Mayor boosts staff during fight of career - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Mayor boosts staff during fight of career

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - The mayor is boosting his staff during the fight of his career with new appointments, and one of them is no stranger to local politics.

In a time when City Hall is surrounded by controversy, Walt Ekard says he's stepping in for one reason and one reason only: the good of the city.

"His issues are his issues. I'm really not involved with that. I'm really here to focus specifically on making sure this city runs properly. Hopefully I'm the right person to do it," Ekard said.

Ekard is no stranger to politics. He spent 13 years running San Diego County as it's CEO and says it was a job that's made him battle tested.

"Obviously in 13 1/2 years we had our ups and downs at the county. So I've been through some pretty difficult times. So hopefully I can lend a hand to people who haven't had that kind of experience," he said.

Ekard says he wants to add discipline to the city, make a management model and step up it's customer service. But he adds that can only come if he can refocus the city's employees.

"Regardless of what happens with the issues in the mayor's office, I'm going to be working with what I think is a great team here at the city to actually make the city better during this time," he said.

How much time isn't clear. Ekard stressed that this is only temporary, giving him a small window to make a big turnaround.

"I came here because I think there's a need. I've been asked to come in and make sure that the focus of the 10,000 city employees is on serving the City of San Diego," he said.

Ekard isn't sure how long he'll hold that position, but he hopes to set some ground work for whoever replaces him down the road.

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