Town of Vail hires Matt Gennett to run its community development department |

Town of Vail hires Matt Gennett to run its community development department

Daily staff report
Matt Gennett
Special to the Daily

VAIL — Vail Town Manager Greg Clifton has announced the hiring of Matt Gennett as the town’s new community development department director. His first day on the job will be Wednesday, Aug. 29.

Gennett has 19 years of municipal planning and management experience in the region. He has been the planning manager for the town of Silverthorne since 2013 and has worked in a variety of other local planning roles, including previous employment with the town of Vail from 2002 to 2006, where he was promoted to senior planner. His experience also includes owning a land use consulting business and serving in various planning positions with the town of Avon and Eagle County Government. He is a current member of the Avon Town Council.

Gennett was selected from among six finalists after taking part in a series of interviews with representatives from the town’s planning and design boards and staff. Clifton said Gennett’s experience and familiarity with Vail will serve the community well.

“This was a recruitment process that produced some very qualified candidates and we are grateful for the high level of interest,” Clifton said. “In the end, Matt’s local experience, his familiarity with the Vail community, his involvement with master planning and his management skills were compelling factors. He will hit the ground running and will play a big role in the community planning processes that lie ahead.”

With his management background, an understanding of the character and uniqueness of Vail, coupled with his personal role as an Avon Town Council member, Gennett said his experiences have positioned him well for the job.

“I am very pleased to be back on the town of Vail team as the new community development director,” Gennett said. “Vail has many exciting projects going on and I am delighted to have the opportunity to play an important role in shaping the future of this amazing community. I am really looking forward to getting started.”

Gennett replaces George Ruther as Vail’s community development director. Ruther had served in the role since 2007 and has transitioned to a newly-created housing director position within the town. During the search process, Chris Neubecker filled the role as interim director while continuing his duties as the department’s planning manager.

Clifton said the town owes its gratitude to Neubecker for his professionalism and dedication during the transition. “Chris is the true professional,” Clifton said. “(Neubecker) never hesitated to step up to the helm and lead a department during a period of rapid transition. His calm demeanor and his commitment to the Vail organization, and to the community as a whole, is so greatly appreciated. He is a valued team player here and is well liked by all. We look forward to his continued growth within the organization.”

Vail’s community development director is responsible for leadership and management direction for current and long range planning, design and plan review, building safety inspections, code and zoning regulations as well as regulatory compliance. In addition, the director assists the town council in policy formulation and provides direct assistance to appointed board and commission members, contractors, architects, and local, county and state government officials.

For more information, contact Clifton at 970-479-2105 or

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