Speaking at a public meeting earlier this month, Kong recalled how her first manager urged her to stick around for at least one year.
"Now here it is 28 years later, and there's never been a dull moment," she mused. "Mountain View is small enough to do a lot of things, but big enough to still have a lot to do."
Kong had reportedly been planning her retirement since at least the spring, which gave the city enough time to find a replacement. On Dec. 7, city officials announced they had hired Jesse Takahashi to serve as the city's new finance director.
Since 2006, Takahashi has served as finance director for the city of Campbell. In that role, he worked under Mountain View City Manager Dan Rich, who previously held the top city staff position in Campbell. Like Kong, he also previously worked as a KPMG accountant.
While the finance department is having a relatively smooth transition, other departures at City Hall lack replacements to immediately fill the vacancies.
Such an absence is being felt by the city's economic development team following last month's departure of its director, Alex Andrade, who had been with the city for five years. Last month, Andrade accepted a job as economic development director for Milpitas.
Similar turnover of leadership is playing out at the city's Planning Department, which provides oversight and review of the city's red-hot development market. In October, Randy Tsuda, who headed the city's Planning Department for 10 years, announced he was leaving to join the nonprofit Palo Alto Housing.
Earlier this year, the city clerk and librarian stepped down, both of whom have already been replaced.
Assistant City Manager Audrey Ramberg, who leads human resources for the city, described the departures as a growing issue for cities across the region. Many senior city executives are reaching retirement age simultaneously, and in some cases cities are scrambling to find qualified, younger candidates to replace them.
"This is becoming a real challenge for local governments as the baby-boomer generation works its way through the professional pipeline," she said. "A lot of people entered the workforce around the same time and now they're entering the end of their careers."
Santa Clara and San Mateo counties have partnered to form a "Next Generation Committee" to encourage more students and prospective candidates to seek government jobs.
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