A performance review that began in August and stretched over several months preceded the resignation of Windsor’s town manager, John Jansons, who left abruptly last week amid ongoing questions about his and others’ leadership, according to Sam Salmon, Windsor’s longest tenured council member.
Jansons, who had served just 13 months in his post, and members of the Town Council agreed to a mutual parting of ways after his review became a regular fixture of the council’s closed-door meetings over the past four months, according to Salmon.
That review began as a standard evaluation for the town’s top executive six months after he started in his job last October. It turned into a drawn-out, eight-session process that aired the council’s concerns with his leadership and led to his sudden departure, Salmon said.
“When you have a review, even though you’re looking at the manager, you’re looking at the state of the town,” Salmon said in an interview late Friday. “Because the review went on, I think we were looking and had more questions. There was nothing that was done that was wrong, and it was kind of a meeting of the minds and we felt like it was just a good time to move on.”
Jansons’ last day on the job was Thursday, a day after the city announced his resignation in a three-sentence statement sent just hours before a Town Council meeting.
The resignation came just weeks after the Nov. 19 departure of Camille Kazarian, who as the town’s assistant manager and administrative services director functioned as Windsor’s second-in-command.
Kazarian, 39, has been hired as executive vice president and chief financial officer of Summit State Bank in Santa Rosa, taking with her five years of experience overseeing the city’s finances and annual budget.
Jansons, 54, had previously served two years as city manager of Farmersville, in Tulare County. Before that, for five years, he was economic development director in the city of Hemet in Riverside County.
Windsor paid Jansons an annual salary of $190,000, according to his publicly posted employment contract. His agreement to resign came with a six-month severance package, Salmon said.
Jansons, reached by phone Friday, said he could not answer questions about his departure, citing unspecified legal constraints.
Other city officials offered little explanation for the departures, including any clarification about whether the two resignations were related.
Robin Donoghue, the Windsor town attorney, would not say if any formal complaints had been filed with the city dealing with Jansons’ or Kazarian’s tenure with the town. She declined to answer questions on the departures, saying town personnel matters remain confidential.
Kazarian had served as interim town manager for five months during the candidate search that eventually led to the hiring of Jansons. She hung up when reached by phone for comment on Friday.
Windsor last month launched a separate, more sweeping review of town operations after a representative of some of the town’s 106 employees sent a letter to council complaining of low morale at Town Hall. The letter questioned Windsor’s overall direction, according to Salmon, a retired attorney who was re-elected last month to his seventh term on the council.
Council members subsequently authorized a broad inquiry overseen by Donoghue, Salmon said.