KNN's new director crosses over from the issuer side

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KNN Public Finance has brought a new director over from the issuer side to work as a financial advisor after 30 years in government.

Scott Mitnick was county administrator of Sutter County, California, where he led an organization of more than 1,000 employees in 20 departments and managed a budget of more than $300 million in a county with 100,000 residents.

“After three decades of working for California local governments, with a heavy focus on financial management, I’m excited to apply my skills to helping a wide range of local government agencies,” Mitnick said in a statement.

KNN hired Mitnick to help grow its cities, counties and special districts sector, said David Leifer, KNN’s senior managing director

“It is representative of an expansion, but not in an entirely new sector,” Leifer said.

With the new addition, KNN grows to 21 people spread throughout three offices in Oakland, Newport Beach and Los Angeles. Mitnick will initially be based in the Oakland office, but work out of all three offices.

Initially, Mitnick will help clients prepare strategic financial plans, Leifer said. This will complement the work KNN already does in helping clients evaluate their debt affordability, develop sound financial management practices and build multi-year financing plans for capital needs, Leifer said.

“Our staff is comprised of professionals with diverse backgrounds and experiences, including rating agency, underwriting, legal and public sector,” Leifer said. “For these reasons, Scott is an ideal addition to the firm. He brings hands-on issuer experience.”

Mitnick will sit for his Series 50 exam and become a registered municipal advisor.

“He has the right mentality to be a financial advisor,” Leifer said. “He is interested in being building long-term relationships and his experience aligns well with the consulting aspect of working as a municipal advisor.”

Prior to his stint at Sutter County, Mitnick worked for 11 years as the city manager for Thousand Oaks, California, a city with a population of 120,000 just north of Los Angeles. While there, he helped develop in 2010 one of the first multi-year financial plans used by a city in California, according to KNN.

He began his career as budget analyst for the city of Brea in 1987 working in progressively more responsible roles in California cities leading up to working as a finance director with Yuba City, before he took the job in Thousand Oaks.

Even in a down market, KNN has stayed busy, Leifer said, pointing to the league tables.

KNN maintained its third place ranking in 2018 for Far West region financial advisory firms with $4.6 billion of deals in 65 issues and ranked 9th nationally, according to Refinitiv.

“We are still bullish on the muni industry,” Leifer said.

Though the firm doesn’t have any other hires in mind, it plans to continue to grow strategically and one sector Leifer mentioned specifically was the utilities sector.

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Career moves Municipal advisors Sell side KNN Public Finance California