Green Park aldermen name Mello to serve as city administrator/clerk

New administrator will start on Nov. 14, Reinagel says

James Mello

James Mello

By Mike Anthony

The Green Park Board of Aldermen voted unanimously last week to adopt an ordinance hiring a new city administrator/city clerk.

James Mello Jr. will serve as Green Park’s fourth city administrator/city clerk since its incorporation in 1995. He currently serves as management analyst/assistant to Chesterfield City Administrator Michael Geisel, and will begin his duties in Green Park on Nov. 14, according to Mayor Bob Reinagel.

Mello, 30, succeeds Zella Pope, who served the city from September 2007 until June 30, when she resigned.

He was selected from a field of roughly 20 candidates who applied for the post, Reinagel told the Call.

Of Mello, the mayor said, “The gentleman is very impressive. He seems very sharp. He’s already come up with a couple of suggestions, and he’s already trying to get some preliminary information before he starts.”

Aldermen were very impressed with Mello’s professional experience, Reinagel said, noting that Mello has worked for Chesterfield since May 2013. Before that, he was a management intern for the city of Maplewood and a staff associate for the Municipal League of Metro St. Louis.

“He has quite of bit of experience in the areas we looked for, and other than that, I think he has all the right qualifications or we wouldn’t have hired him,” Reinagel said.

Mello told the Call he is excited about taking the position.

“Obviously, I haven’t been a city administrator before, and I think that just based on the synergy that I have with the board, the mayor and everybody, it seems like a really good place to start. I’m excited to start serving a community of my own,” he said.

The new city administrator/city clerk said he has a real passion for local government.

“I think it’s important to people because it’s kind of the government that’s closest to them. You can say what you want about whatever president or your congressman or whatever, but when the potholes on the street don’t get filled, that’s what really grinds your gears in the morning …,” Mello said, adding, “Just having that solid, consistent delivery of service I think has always been really important to me, and it’s something I wanted to do for my career.”

Mello earned a master’s degree in public policy administration with an emphasis on local government in 2013 from the University of Missouri-St. Louis and a bachelor’s degree in economics in 2008 from the University of Missouri-Columbia.

Under the terms of the employment agreement approved by the Board of Aldermen, Mello will be paid $60,000 annually as city administrator/city clerk. He also will receive the same level of health, dental and vision benefits provided to other city employees.

In addition, Mello will be credited with vacation leave of 10 days immediately upon his employment and will receive 10 sick days per year.