Camas selects new finance director

Cathy Huber Nickerson will succeed Joan Durgin

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Camas announced on Thursday that Cathy Huber Nickerson will be the city’s next finance director. She will start on July 8.

She succeeds Joan Durgin, who after 24 years will retire on Friday.

For the past five years, Huber Nickerson has been the finance and information services director for the City of Battle Ground, which has a biennial budget of $54.8 million.

She previously was an employee of the Clark County Treasurer’s Office, where over the course of 20 years she worked as a senior accountant and finance manager.

She holds two degrees in public administration — a master’s from Lewis & Clark College and a bachelor’s from Seattle University.

Huber Nickerson, a Camas resident for the past 15 years, is an active volunteer. She has served on the boards of the Camas Public Library and the Camas Athletic Booster Club, and volunteers with the Camas Educational Foundation and in Camas schools.

She has two daughters, ages 16 and 18, who both attend Camas High School.

Huber Nickerson said she is looking forward to working a little closer to home.

“I applied for the position to have the opportunity to work in the community I live in and to give back to the community that has provided so much to my family,” she said. “I am really looking forward to working with a great group of dedicated people.”

Mayor Scott Higgins said Huber Nickerson will be a good fit for Camas.

“The city of Camas is rightly proud of its financial stability, thanks in large part to Finance Director Joan Durgin,” he said. “We were looking for a candidate who would respect the financial groundwork that has already been laid and carry us forward into the future. I believe that Cathy Huber Nickerson will be successful in that role for us.”

Her starting salary will be $9,161 per month.

In Camas, the finance director job responsibilities include purchasing, investments, risk management, general accounting functions, budget preparation, including revenue forecasting and budgeting, auditing, debt management, and supervising and evaluating the performance of assigned personnel.

The finance director oversees seven employees. The city’s 2013 annual budget is $58 million.

Huber Nickerson’s appointment is expected to be confirmed by the Camas City Council on June 3.

In related Camas City Council news:

On May 20, the City Council approved a change to the finance director salary schedule.

The new revised seven-step pay scale will start at $7,642 and top out at $9,161.

Previously, the range was $7,326 to $8,748.

According to City Administrator Nina Regor, the change was made after comparing Camas’ finance director salary to that of 11 other cities. Camas came out below average.

The finance director salary had last been adjusted in 2008.

At the same meeting, City Council approved an ordinance to transfer the duties of the city clerk to the city administrator and to provide for the appointment of a city treasurer.

According to city documents, since 1970, the clerk and treasurer functions have been combined, and fell within the purview of the finance director.

Among the duties of the city clerk are keeping record of every act and proceeding of the city council, providing reports required by the state auditor, and recording all ordinances.

“It’s not unusual for the city clerk to be combined with the city administrator, just as it’s not unusual for it to be combined with the finance director,” Regor said. “It depends on what works from an organizational standpoint.”