Long Beach City Manager Patrick West announced six appointments to key city management positions on Friday.

“These appointments fill key positions in the City that provide essential services to our community,” said City Manager West in a statement. “This is a talented group of people from varying and diverse backgrounds, who bring incredible experience and talent to the City of Long Beach.”

Gas and Oil Director: Robert Dowell
Dowell’s appointment will be effective in early April. He has 36 years of professional experience in both the gas and energy sectors, and is currently the vice president and general manager of Long Beach-based Warren E&P, Inc., which he joined in 2007. Dowell will replace Chris Garner, who resigned as director in September 2015 to become general manager of the Long Beach Water Department (LBWD).

Public Works Director: Craig Beck
Beck’s appointment as director of Public Works will become effective Saturday, March 12. Beck has worked for the city’s Fire, Community Development, Development Services, and the Gas and Oil departments since 1986 and currently serves as the interim director of Public Works, where he oversees 440 employees and a budget of $147 million.


Interim Airport Director: Juan Lopez-Rios
Lopez-Rios, who has worked for the city since 2001, is the current property services manager for Economic and Property Development. His appointment as interim airport director will be effective on April 2, while the city recruits for the next airport director. Lopez-Rios has held management positions in public works and the Long Beach Airport.

Deputy Fire Chief: Chris Rowe
Fire Chief Mike DuRee has appointed Rowe as deputy fire chief, effective on Saturday, March 19. Rowe has worked for the city since 1985, serving as public safety dispatcher, firefighter, engineer, captain and battalion chief, and is currently an assistant fire chief, according to the release. Deputy Chief Rowe will take Dave Segura’s place, who was recently appointed as Huntington Beach’s Fire Chief. The city will work to recruit a new assistant fire chief over the next few months.


Public Affairs Officer: Kerry Gerot
As of March 5, Gerot has been named the permanent public affairs officer in the City Manager’s Office. A city employee since 2011, and previously acting public affairs officer, she has also held a management position at Long Beach Airport and brings her experience in the private sector, including producing and directing documentary material and PSAs; marketing plans for feature films; managing editor of a magazine; and public relations and visual communications for myriad clients.

Business Operations Bureau Manager: Tony Foster
Foster has been named Business Operations Bureau manager for Long Beach Gas and Oil, to go into effect Saturday, March 12. A city employee since 2008, Foster is currently the acting business operations bureau manager, following his work as gas supply officer. Foster has also upheld management positions in Development Services as a redevelopment project officer.

Director of Parks, Recreation and Marine: Marie Knight
Knight was named director of Long Beach Parks, Recreation and Marine on February 19 and is currently the director of Community Services for the City of Orange. She will assume her position in Long Beach on March 28.


“I want to congratulate the new members of the team, and I know that they will do their utmost to ensure that the City continues to provide excellent services to every resident, business and visitor,” said West in a statement. “I also want to thank Edward Farrell for his outstanding leadership as Interim Director of Gas and Oil these past six months.”

Asia Morris is a Long Beach native covering arts and culture for the Long Beach Post. You can reach her @hugelandmass on Twitter and Instagram and at [email protected].