Longtime Highland Village City Manager Michael Leavitt announced his retirement on Wednesday after 20 years with the city and 33 years in municipal government.
Leavitt’s retirement is effective Oct. 1, 2020. He began working with the city in March 2000 as the public works director and was appointed city manager in 2003, according to a news release from the city, which says Leavitt “has been instrumental in the development of Highland Village as one of the most dynamic cities in North Texas.”
The Marketplace at Highland Village and The Shops at Highland Village developments have led to the growth in sales tax revenue from $437,400 in 2003 to $4,167,593 in 2020, which has been a past and present City Council goal, according to the city. The public safety of residents improved with the transition from a volunteer fire department to a full-time, full-service department to meet the health and safety expectations of the community. The city’s ad valorem tax rate was reduced in 2017 after maintaining the same rate for the previous 17 years, and the exemption amount was increased from $50,000 to $75,000 for homeowners over 65 and disabled persons.
Leavitt is known in the region for his ability to see all sides of a situation and calmly resolve issues of any kind, according to the city.
“Mike has always led the City with the belief that a positive difference can be made in someone’s life each and every day,” said Mayor Charlotte Wilcox. “He has lived out this principle in his own career and, by example, has created a staff dedicated to the service of Highland Village residents, businesses, and visitors. He has an infectious laugh that represents his personality. It has been my joy to work alongside Mike. He will surely be missed.”
Leavitt will stay fully engaged through the 2020-21 budget process to lay the groundwork for the next city manager.
“I would like to thank the Council, staff and our community for the trust placed in me to manage the operations of this city for the last twenty years,” Leavitt said. “Leading our dedicated staff, team and family has been and continues to be an honor.”