Randy Murphy, currently the GM of the Hidden Valley Lake Association, is picked after seven-month search

By Mike Chaldu


The search for a permanent city manager in Solvang is apparently over.

According to documents filed with the Monday, April 10, City Council meeting agenda, the council has selected Randy Murphy, currently the general manager of the Hidden Valley Lake Association, a homeowners’ group in Northern California. Murphy has more than 30 years of management experience, more than 20 of them in the public sector.

The city manager position had been open since the resignation of Xenia Bradford in September 2022. After her departure the City Council retained the executive recruiting firm Ralph Andersen & Associates to conduct a recruitment for the position. The council interviewed a number of candidates before deciding on Murphy.

Brad Vidro, a former Solvang City Manager himself, has been serving as interim city manager since October 2022.

The City Council will put the hiring up for approval at the regular meeting on Monday, April 10.

If approved, Murphy will start at his new position on April 28, with the employment agreement lasting for three years, through April 27, 2026, with compensation of $190,000 per year.

Murphy has been the GM of the Hidden Valley Lake Association since June 2019. Hidden Valley Lake is a gated subdivision in Lake County, located 97 miles north of San Francisco, and 114 miles west of Sacramento.

Before starting with the HVLA, Murphy held administrative positions with several cities in California, including Benicia, Oroville, and Tulare.

This story is developing and will be updated.