County HR Director to Retire; Interim Named

December 14, 2010

Tulare County Human Resources & Development Director Tim Huntley announced today at the Board of Supervisors meeting that he will retire after more than 40 years of public service. Huntley said his last day will be Friday, December 17.

Rhonda Sjostrom, who has served as the county's assistant human resources director for the past year, has been named the interim Human Resources & Development Director, the Tulare County Board of Supervisors announced today. Sjostrom has been with Tulare County since 1987, where she has held management positions in the County Administrative Office and Human Resources.

"We appreciate the wealth of experience that Tim brought to Tulare County and believe the county benefitted tremendously under his leadership," said Board of Supervisors Chairman Steve Worthley.

Huntley was hired by Tulare County on August 1, 2005. Prior to holding his position in Tulare County, Tim served more than 35 years in a variety of public service positions, many of them in upper management, with the City of Escondido, Kings County, San Bernardino County, and Yolo County.

Under Huntley's leadership in Tulare County, the Human Resources & Development team established a Joint Powers Agreement with the County of Fresno to administer the counties' health plans; instituted a system for background checks for new hires with a fingerprinting Live Scan program; created an employee discount program; assisted in the formation of the County Fire Department and IT Department and initiated the annual employee Wellness Fair.
His most visible role with the County was as their chief negotiator with the County's 10 employee associations and unions. The recession necessitated dramatic cut backs in both employee compensation and staffing. In the last three years Huntley negotiated 27 labor contracts including reductions in compensation that helped avoid additional layoffs of employees.

"Negotiations have been difficult both for the employees and management,” Huntley said. “We have struggled through these last years with good intentions, honest efforts, and a strong desire to secure agreement.  I'm optimistic that our cooperation this past year will set the stage for a more fruitful future."