City Manager Rad Bartlam named Jeff Hood to serve permanently as the Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services director after he served for more than 9 months as interim director.
"Jeff has exceeded my expectations as the interim director," Bartlam said in a written statement. "I'm confident that he will continue to do an excellent job managing the department."
The Lodi City Council will consider the appointment at a meeting on Nov. 21. Hood, who is 52, has worked for the city since 2007, when he started as the communications specialist. He also took on economic development and special assignments.
When former director Jim Rodems left for a new job as the district administrator for the Cordova Recreation and Park District in February, Hood stepped into the role on an interim basis.
He was surprised when Bartlam gave him both the interim and the permanent position.
"I never dreamed I would ever be in this position," he said. "I'm just grateful he gave me a chance, and I'm grateful and appreciative that he felt I was doing a good job."
Hood will earn $118,000 while overseeing a $5.8 million budget that covers city parks, recreation programs and Hutchins Street Square.
While he said he enjoys the challenge of balancing the budget, Hood said he also loves meeting with people in the community.
"There's so many people in Lodi who really have a love for parks, recreation programs and Hutchins Street Square," Hood said. "I really enjoy talking to them about their passion for these elements, and they have a great deal to do with the quality of life people in Lodi have."