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Get to know Geoff Patnoe

Updated: Jul 28, 2020

We’d like to formally welcome Assistant City Manager Geoff Patnoe to Team Carlsbad, who joined on March 17 at the height of our COVID-19 response. Geoff dived right in and over the past month, has been supporting the city through this public health crisis. We encourage you to get to know Geoff a little more through the Q&A below.

What first got you interested in working for government?

When I was 8 years old my mom went back to school to help support our family after my dad passed away. My older brother and I were often left on our own after school but we were lucky to grow up in a great area where I participated in parks and recreation programs, scouts and many other city sponsored activities. I felt in those early years that I was raised by my community and believe that it helped me develop an early appreciation for what government can provide residents, especially young people. I later volunteered as a city recreation leader in the summers and also spent my junior year of high school in Washington, D.C. serving as a Page in the U.S. House of Representatives where I got a front row seat watching the wheels of government spin.

What made you want to come to Carlsbad?

As an observer from another local government it was very obvious why Carlsbad is considered not only one of the best cities to live but also one of the best run governments in the region. I felt it would be exciting to be a part of such an impressive team and I jumped at this opportunity. I also have been coming to Carlsbad with my family for years to shop, driving my daughter to soccer events, to eat, buy Legos or to just hit the beach. I have developed an appreciation for this city and am thrilled at the chance to work with the Mayor and Council as well as the city employees to help them take Carlsbad to the next level.

What do you enjoy doing in your downtime?

My wife and I believe our real job is that as Co-CEOs of Abby & Kara, Inc. serving as our daughters’ wheels, tutors, ATM machine, food delivery service and cheerleaders for countless theater or soccer activities. Abby is a Freshman at Westview High School and Kara is in 7th grade at Mesa Verde Middle School in Rancho Penasquitos. I also enjoy being the driver for my kids and their friends when they have social activities all while trying to avoid the occasional cameo in one of their Tik Tok videos or Instagram posts. On a personal level I love 80s music, concerts, being outside, travel, Comic Con, baseball and going out to eat with friends or family. Charlie, my 1 year old Welsh Corgi also keeps me entertained in my downtime.

What might someone be surprised to learn about you?

I am addicted to Disney Cruises, I’ve thrown out the first pitch at two different Major League Baseball ballparks (San Diego and San Francisco), shaken hands with 9 different Presidents of the United States (even the ones I didn’t vote for) and named my youngest daughter after a character on a TV show on the SciFi Channel.

What’s your favorite handshake alternative?

While I am more a Star Wars dude then a Star Trek fan I believe a Vulcan live long and prosper hand sign might be an effective non-handshake greeting in our current post coronavirus environment.

Additional details

  • Geoff brings more than 25 years of experience working in public and private sector positions, all building on his passion for good government and organizational excellence. As the former director of the Office of Strategy and Intergovernmental Affairs at the County of San Diego, Geoff has spent the last 10 years serving on the county’s executive team, where he has developed a reputation as a nimble, savvy and collaborative leader.

  • Other experience includes working as an aide to a California governor, executive director of the San Diego County Taxpayers Association, chief of staff to a county supervisor and even a planning commissioner in his hometown of Cupertino. Stints as a corporate communication consultant for major technology companies and a public affairs strategist working on complex public policy issues have helped to round out his experience with a private sector perspective.

  • As Assistant City Manager, Geoff will bring big picture thinking, strategic insights and a broad perspective to our organization at a time when we are facing increasingly complex issues and demands.

  • He will directly oversee our three deputy city managers, who will in turn take a larger role in the day to day operations of the city. Geoff will be a key partner helping we remain aligned and focused on the issues most important to our community.

  • Geoff is a graduate of the University of California, Davis, with a degree in political science and public service.


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