City of Austin interim city manager announces key leadership changes

Austin's interim city manager Jesus Garza announced some big leadership changes on March 1.

Assistant city manager Rey Arellano is retiring, and Jacqueline Yaft, the executive director of Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) has resigned.

Garza has also hired new staff for his interim leadership team. 

  • Joe Canales will serve as special assistant to the interim city manager
  • Bruce Mills will serve as interim assistant city manager over public safety
  • Jim Smith will be the new interim executive director AUS
  • Laura Huffman will serve as a consultant in change management.

According to the Austin City Council, since taking on the role of interim city manager on Feb. 15, Garza has started an organizational review, which includes working with department leadership to identify areas of immediate need to help define priorities.