City of Kentwood Welcomes Keyla Garcia as Finance Director

City of Kentwood Welcomes Keyla Garcia as Finance Director 

Garcia, KeylaThe City of Kentwood has announced Keyla Garcia as its new finance director. 

In this role, Garcia will serve as the city’s chief financial officer and lead all aspects of the Finance Department’s functions and staff. This will include developing and administering budgets, overseeing all accounting work, managing audits and financial reporting, and overseeing purchasing, accounts payable and payroll functions. She will also lead employee retirement benefits administration, investing, risk management, debt administration, and financial planning and forecasting for the city.

Garcia began her new role with the city this week.

“We are delighted to welcome Keyla to the City of Kentwood,” Mayor Stephen Kepley said. “She brings a strong background in municipal finance to our organization that will greatly benefit our employees and community members. I look forward to working alongside Keyla as we continue our efforts to maintain our status as a fiscally responsible city.”

Garcia brings extensive experience in municipal accounting to the City of Kentwood. She has eight years of finance experience in municipalities, most recently as finance director and treasurer for the City of Hudsonville. As Hudsonville’s CFO and treasurer, she oversaw all aspects of finance and accounting for the city.

She worked collaboratively across departments on all budgeting, auditing and financial reporting projects and was actively involved in risk management for the city. She also briefly served as interim city manager during the City of Hudsonville’s search for a new city manager, managing the organization’s day-to-day operations.

Prior to her role as Hudsonville’s finance director, Garcia served as the city’s deputy finance director. Earlier in her career, she served the City of East Grand Rapids as deputy treasurer and accounting clerk. In these roles, she assisted with payroll, utility billing and rate analysis, tax and special assessment billings and other finance projects and reports.

“I’m honored to join the City of Kentwood as its finance director,” Garcia said. “I have long admired the City of Kentwood and its reputation as a fiscally responsible municipality and am excited to begin collaborating with all departments and elected officials to continue that legacy.”  

Garcia holds a Michigan Certified Professional Treasurer distinction from the Michigan Municipal Treasurers Association and a Certified Public Funds Investment Manager credential from the Association of Public Treasurers of the United States and Canada. 

She is active in the Association of Public Treasurers of the United States and Canada, Ottawa County Treasurers Association and Michigan Government Finance Officers Association.

She has a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Ferris State University.

Garcia succeeds Tom Chase, who has served as the City of Kentwood’s finance director for nearly 30 years. Chase will stay on full-time to assist with the transition through the beginning of September. At that time, he will move into a part-time role as pension plan administrator.