The public service career of Lamont Ewell will come to a close after 34 years of service.

The Santa Monica City Manager announced his intention to step down at the end of this year, so to give the city ample time to conduct a nationwide search for his successor.

Councilman Kevin McKeown stated that Ewell, among many things, was a skilled administrator and an inspiring manager.

“The moment I met Lamont Ewell and sensed his gracious integrity, I knew he was the man I wanted to lead our city,” McKeown said.

Councilman Richard Bloom noted some of Lamont’s memorable achievements, including a re-calibration of the staff’s approach to customer service.

Bloom said that along with emphasizing collaboration by reorganizing the city staff that facilitates system-wide communication, Lamont also helped in designing a new paradigm to the already, “best practice response to homelessness.” 

“Given that Los Angeles County has over 10 percent of the nation’s homeless and that Santa Monica is looked to for leadership on this issue, our revamped model has considerable regional importance,” said Bloom.

Bloom boasted that Santa Monica has had a series of effective and excellent city managers whom have worked hard to institute sustainability, public education, a diverse economic basis and fiscal integrity.

Bloom said Santa Monica is recognized as a model city.

“He will be impossible to replace,” McKeown said.

The city is conducting both an internal, and countrywide search for Lamont’s successor.

The challenge for the new city manager, Bloom said, will be managing the economic downturn while everyone maintains their high expectations.

Louis Dettorre can be reached at