Joe Gorton is the former city manager of the City of San Ramon, California, for over six years. Joe managed an operating budget of approximately eighty million dollars and a thirty million dollar capital budget in the city of 85,000 residents. Joe has over 35 years of experience in local government. During his tenure, Joe developed strong business relationships in the city that encompasses a major regional employment center, Bishop Ranch. Bishop Ranch is home to over 600 thriving companies in more than 30 industries, with several from Fortune 500 companies.
While city manager, Joe led several major initiatives to include a joint partnership with the San Ramon Valley Fire District. This partnership included the development of a modern public safety complex for police and fire as well as a state-of-the-art emergency operations and communications center. The partnership also forged new ground in creating a joint dispatch center between the two agencies and a cutting-edge response to mental health calls in the community. Joe’s accomplishments include reorganizing city hall, securing funding from multiple sources for the Iron Horse Trail Overcrossing, upgrading the city’s technology and implementing quality improvement and efficiency processes. Joe was the primary negotiator with developers interested in building in a thriving and growing city. In 2022, Joe was named employee of the year by the San Ramon Chamber of Commerce resulting from excellent leadership through the Covid 19 global pandemic. Joe was a member of the leadership steering committee for mental health response protocols in Contra Costa County
ultimately securing millions in funding for countywide mental health response. He was on the board of the Contra Costa Economic Partnership and very involved in the community.
Joe started his career in law enforcement at the Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Office and later transferred to the San Ramon Police Department when the city council voted to form their own police department after years of contracting police service with the sheriff’s office. Joe ultimately ascended the ranks to the Chief of Police for the San Ramon Police Department. Joe has over twenty-eight years of experience in law enforcement. One of the highlights of Joes career was being selected as the second in command of the newly formed San Ramon Police Department and put in charge of its creation from the ground up. Joe was tasked with leading the transition team and was instrumental in the formation of the department. The transition team’s primary task was hiring fifty-six sworn police officers and several civilian staff members. This endeavor entailed creating
comprehensive background checks, training, and orientation of new employees.
Joe was also responsible for creating all operational policies for the department, acquiring the necessary law enforcement equipment, attaining California Peace Officers Standards and Training certification, Department of Justice certification, and the integration of law enforcement databases with county, state, and federal agencies.
Joe has a broad scope of law enforcement experience. As a lieutenant with sheriff’s office, Joe was the commanding officer for a minimum security detention facility and acted as a County Board of Parole Commissioner. As a sergeant, he supervised patrol operations, general crimes, and violent crimes investigators. In addition to being a member of the Homicide callout team, Joe served as the team leader for the hostage negotiations team. Early in his career, Joe served in various assignments including county and municipal patrol, jail operations, investigations, undercover narcotics, specialized enforcement team, youth services officer, helicopter flight officer, and training officer.
Joe holds a Master of Science degree in Organizational Development from the University of San Francisco (USF) where he graduated in the top ten percent of his class. He also holds a Bachelor of Public Administration degree, receiving college honors, from USF and an Associates of Science degree in Administration of Justice from Butte College. Joe is graduate of the California Command College and ranked number one in his academy class.
Joe is a member of various associations to include the International City Managers Association, California Public Mangers Association, International Association of Chiefs of Police, California Association of Chiefs of Police, California Peace Officers Association, Police Futurist International as well as other community-based organizations.