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Wells named new city engineer
Toby Wells has been named the new city engineer by the city of Ceres.

On Monday Wells, 40, was given the job after an extensive search and an interview of 17 candidates.

City officials said Wells, who has been working with the city as a consultant engineer, was deemed the most qualified candidate.

"I know the interview process was quite extensive and heard we had numerous individuals from other jurisdictions," stated Mayor Chris Vierra.

"One of the advantages we see with him is that his work is well known already because he's been working with the city in a consultancy capacity, where he's working side by side with the engineers in the field," said Acting City Manager Art deWerk.

Since Joe Hollstein's departure from the city - he served as public works director and city engineer - the city has had to tweak the position in the economic downturn. Phil Scott had served as public works director and Glenn Gephardt was city engineer. When both left for career reasons, Mike Brinton served as both acting city engineer and public works director. Scott left the city, putting Brinton in charge of both public works and engineering with the help of consultants. Now that Wells is aboard, Brinton will oversee the Public Works Department.

Wells has worked on the Blaker/Service traffic signal, the Hatch Road bike path, the alley pavement project and the Whitmore Avenue overlay.

"I've pretty much been involved all over at different levels," said Wells.

Wells grew up in Hilmar, attended Modesto Junior College and Fresno State University and started his own engineering firm from his home in Turlock. He applied for the job as soon as he learned about the opening.

"I have the advantage of being able to already know what's going on," said Wells. "Most of the other candidates didn't have that knowledge. It's pretty easy for me to formulate a plan when I know what's going on."

"It's a good fit. A really good fit."