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New County Counsel Tapped by Board of Supervisors

Dennis Marshall, county counsel for Fresno County, will oversee 45 employees and a $7.7 million budget.

The Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday announced the appointment of Dennis Marshall as the new county counsel.

Marshall is the county counsel for Fresno County, a position he has held since 2004. Marshall will take over from Interim County Counsel Daniel Wallace effective July 1. Wallace succeeded County Counsel Shane Stark, who retired in January after 20 years in the department, the last 13 in the top job.

Marshall has been a public sector attorney since 1988, including 12 years of executive-level experience and four years as the Fresno County counsel, where he oversees 23 attorneys and 12 support staff with a $4 million annual department budget.

“We are delighted to have Mr. Marshall join our county family,” Fourth District Supervisor Joni Gray said. “Mr. Marshall was an outstanding candidate and emerged through the selection process as a great match for our legal needs.”

Gray, with Second District Supervisor Janet Wolf, headed the board’s subcommittee that completed the recruitment search for a new county counsel. Board chairman Salud Carbajal made the official announcement during the board’s regular meeting Tuesday in Santa Maria.

Janet Wolf

“Mr. Marshall’s public law experience is an excellent complement to an already outstanding county counsel staff that provides legal advice and services to the county on a wide array of complex issues,” Supervisor Wolf said.

From 1988 to 1996, Marshall was a deputy county counsel, and from 1996 to 2004 served as assistant county counsel in Fresno. His law degree is from the San Joaquin College of Law, and he has a bachelor’s degree from California State University, Fresno. He is a member of the California State Bar and has legal experience in land use, water law, the Brown Act, labor and employment law and transactions.

Marshall will oversee a staff of about 45 employees and an annual operating budget of about $7.7 million. Marshall’s annual salary will be about $190,000.

“Santa Barbara County is one of the nation’s premier counties, and I’m honored to have been selected as its chief legal counsel,” Marshall said.

William Boyer is Santa Barbara County‘s communications director.

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