Al Zelinka is the City Manager of Riverside, the City of Arts & Innovation. Al’s professional goal is to make a difference in communities, and this aspiration drives his work on behalf of Riverside’s elected leaders, residents, businesses, and staff. His public service roles during the past decade include: Assistant City Manager, and Community Development Director for the City of Riverside; and Community Development Director and Planning Manager for the City of Fullerton.
Prior to his municipal service career, Al was Vice President with RBF Consulting and Principal of RBF Consulting's URBAN DESIGN STUDIO. He has practiced city planning and delivered presentations or training in more than 28 states and the District of Columbia, directed more than 150 projects, and played an active role in another 100. He is the co-author of two books, SafeScape and Placemaking on a Budget, and is Past President of the California Planning Roundtable, a 35-year organization dedicated to advancing the practice and profession of planning and to providing leadership for a better California.
Al graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Public Planning from Northern Arizona University in 1989 and a Master of Regional Planning from Cornell University in 1991. As Riverside’s City Manager, Al believes that the community and region’s best days are ahead and, anything can be achieved through positive mindsets and commitments to healthy partnerships.
The City Manager’s Office is the liaison between the Mayor and City Council and members of the public. The Mayor and City Council provide strategy and policy direction to the City Manager, and the City Manager implements those strategies and policies by directing efforts of 2,400 city staff through effective leadership.
Within the City Manager’s Office are several key sections:
The Community Police Review Commission, which independently reviews citizen concerns, recommends policy changes and conducts public outreach.
The Office of Organizational Performance and Audit, which are like in-house consultants to the entire organization, helping to maximize efficiency, effectiveness and openness.
The Office of Communications, which tells Riverside’s story with print, digital and video, flyers, press releases and social media.
The Office of Homeless Solutions, which works with local businesses, non-profits and public agencies to address and alleviate homeless issues in Riverside.
And Intergovernmental Relations, which works with local and regional governments to partner and collaborate on common issues.