Jerald Gilbert

CIty of Enid Chief Financial Officer Jerald Gilbert speaks at the ribbon-cutting of the carousel at Meadowlake Park. Enid City Commission has selected Gilbert as the next city manager, to replace retiring Eric Benson. (Staff Photo by BONNIE VCULEK)

We’d like to congratulate Jerald Gilbert being selected as the next city manager by the Enid City Commission last week.

Having worked for the city since 2005, Gilbert is a familiar name as Enid’s chief financial officer. He was selected among three finalists chosen by The Pace Group headhunting firm, and this exhaustive search adds credibility to his selection.

Enid didn’t have to go far to find its replacement for the retiring Eric Benson as city manager. When Mayor Bill Shewey called to notify the city’s chief accountant of the promotion, Gilbert was literally sitting two doors down from the city manager’s office.

Gilbert, who previously served as interim city manager in Enid, attended Oklahoma State University to study accounting and economics, then received a master’s in business administration from Phillips University in Enid. He graduated from Crescent High School and his family has longtime ties in Enid.

In 2012, he took command of an Oklahoma Army National Guard field artillery battalion based in Lawton. Now a lieutenant colonel, Gilbert has served in the military for almost three decades.

These relationships brought Gilbert’s name to the top, giving him additional statue. He knows Enid and will be a good fit for our community.

“I look forward to working with the great commissioners and great staff we have, to continue the progress we have embarked on the last eight years,” Gilbert said Thursday.

The well-liked Gilbert is respected as a fiscal conservative and has intricate knowledge of the city’s finances and programs. Being catapulted to a leadership position among peers will be a challenge, but Gilbert is known for displaying a pleasant demeanor that complements his professionalism.

We expect Gilbert will hit the ground running as Enid progresses into the 21st century.

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