News Release News Release The City of Palo Alto
Communications Department
250 Hamilton Ave
Palo Alto, CA 94301


PRESS RELEASE 10/03/2012
Subject :

Palo Alto Names New Development Services Director
Contact : James Keene, City Manager    650-329-2563
Palo Alto, CA – City Manager James Keene announced that he has selected Peter Pirnejad as the City of Palo Alto's new Development Services Director. This is a new senior management position charged with implementing an effective and efficient development services process as well as employing best practices and performance improvements at the Development Center. Mr. Pirnejad comes to Palo Alto from the City of Daly City, where he worked four years as the Assistant Director of Economic and Community Development. Mr. Pirnejad will begin his duties with the City on October 16, 2012, and will receive an annual salary of $161,249.

After an extensive executive search that yielded 64 applications, eight candidates were invited to interview with three panels involving City department stakeholders, Palo Alto community representatives and Bay Area public sector leaders. 

"Peter’s management style is focused on team building and his experience encompasses streamlining the development review process to the mutual benefit of customers and staff through workflow redesign, interdepartmental teams, greater procedural transparency and technology improvements," said Keene.

According to Keene, there have been a number of significant changes implemented at the Development Center designed to improve the customer experience; however, more work is needed before the Development Center Blueprint Initiative is fully implemented. “Peter brings a skillset to Palo Alto that will help us complete the organizational transformation outlined in our blueprint,” Keene added.

Mr. Pirnejad has more than 14 years’ experience in community development, executing a full range of development services. Currently at the City of Daly City, Mr. Pirnejad manages the daily operations of four divisions, with a Department budget total of $5.5 million and directly managed staff of 19. While in Daly City, he has had oversight in the creation of a new Virtual Permit Center, implemented using new high tech land use management software which allows for automated plan check routing, express permit issuance, and building inspections that provide for Real-Time corrections and/or approvals with mobile laptops.

"I am excited to be part of the Palo Alto Development Services Team," said Pirnejad. "I look forward to continuing the improvements to Development Services in the spirit of innovation and transparency that has set the City of Palo Alto apart."

His academic training includes a Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Studies and Geography from the University of California, Santa Barbara, a Masters of Planning and Development Studies, and a Graduate Certificate in Geographic Information Science, both with top honors from the USC Price School of Public Policy. 

Prior to his service with the City of Daly City, Mr. Pirnejad worked for other California local agencies including the City of Lodi, the City of Westlake Village and the City of Selma. He has led various successful projects, Master Plan development and comprehensive Building and Planning studies.