The City of Yucaipa operates under the council-manager form of government, in which an elected City Council serves as the City’s legislative body and appoints a City Manager to perform the executive function. This system of local government combines the strong political leadership of elected officials with the professional managerial experience of an appointed City Manager. Over 90% of California’s 482 municipalities operate under the council-manager form of government.
The City Manager is the Chief Executive Officer of the City. As the City’s administrative head, he is employed by, and answers directly to, the City Council. He is responsible for the efficient operation of all City departments and functions. He serves as an advisor to the City Council on policy matters, provides professional leadership in administering and executing the objectives and policies of the City Council, appoints and leads all City staff, develops and recommends solutions to community matters for Council consideration, oversees preparation of the City’s annual budget, develops and plans new and innovative programs to address future community needs, and promotes trust in local government by striving to provide exceptional and transparent customer service.
The City Manager also serves as City Treasurer and as Executive Director of the Successor Agency to the former Yucaipa Redevelopment Agency.
Chris Mann has served as Yucaipa’s City Manager since March 1, 2023. With a diverse professional background which includes extensive experience in the areas of local government administration, public relations, political strategy, and real estate development and management, Chris uniquely provides public service with a private sector approach.
In his previous role, as City Manager for the City of Canyon Lake, California, Chris is widely credited with professionalizing City staffing and operations and turning around the finances of the City. Suffering from crippling budget deficits for the better part of a decade, Chris implemented popular quality of life programs that increased General Fund revenue by 31% in a four-year period without raising taxes and taking the City’s budget from an $800,000 deficit to a surplus of more than $400,000. He also led the City’s efforts to start its own fire department. The Canyon Lake Fire Department went into service January 1, 2022, saving the City hundreds of thousands of dollars in its first year and providing faster response times than what the City experienced under its previous contract with the County of Riverside.
Chris brings a wide breadth of experience both in the public and private sectors. Chris started in public service at a young age. At 23 he was elected to the City Council in the City of Westlake Village, in Western Los Angeles County (1999). At 26 he became Mayor. He has also served on two separate elected water boards, the San Gorgonio Pass Water Agency (2004-2008) and the Yucaipa Valley Water District (2016-2023), where he was selected by his peers as Board President, a position he held for four consecutive years until he resigned the position upon his appointment as City Manager for the City of Yucaipa.
From 2014 to 2017, Chris worked as an Administrative Analyst and then as Deputy Chief of Staff for a member of the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors. In this role, he advised the Supervisor on a wide range of policy issues impacting the County’s two million residents, including the management of the County’s $5.4 billion budget and 22,000 employees.
Much of Chris’ professional experience has been in the private sector. From 2005 to 2019, he owned and operated Mann Communications, a public relations firm specializing in helping businesses interface and do business with local government, and helping local government agencies more effectively communicate with the public. The company’s client list included local small businesses, residential and commercial real estate development companies, industry associations, labor groups, cities, school districts, political action committees and non-profit organizations. Through his work with development clients, Chris has also held ownership interests in several commercial real estate development projects. Prior to forming Mann Communications, Chris worked as a Senior Account Executive at O’Reilly Public Relations, one of the largest and best-known public relations firms in the Inland Empire, where he specialized in land-use entitlement, public outreach programs and political strategy.
Chris holds bachelor’s degrees in Psychology and Political Science from California Lutheran University, in Thousand Oaks, California, and has completed all required coursework for a master’s degree in Public Policy and Administration. He is also a graduate of the ICMA High Performance Leadership Academy. His active professional affiliations include the International City/County Management Association (ICMA), the California City Management Foundation (CCMF) and the Municipal Management Association of Southern California (MMASC). Chris lives in Yucaipa with his wife Annie, their three-year-old son Liam and newborn daughter Ellie.