This year, ACMA recognized John Holmes and Steve Peru as the recipients of the 2012 Life Member awards at the 2012 Winter
Conference in Sedona. John Holmes' career in local government spans nearly 40 years, with service in Arizona, California
and Ohio. Additionally, Mr. Holmes has been an active member of the ACMA for several years, serving as board president in
the early 1980s.
Holmes began his career in Sandusky, Ohio, before moving to Scottsdale, Arizona in 1972 to serve as an Assistant to the
City Manager. In 1977, Holmes became City Manager of Casa Grande, a position he held until 1983, when he was appointed
City Manager of Redlands, CA. From there, Holmes served as City Manager of Riverside, CA.; Interim Public Works Director
of Fresno, CA; County Manager of Coconino County, AZ.; and Interim City Manager of Flagstaff.
Throughout the span of his career, John led many successful economic development projects, including an effort that attracted
Ross Laboratories, Frito-Lay and three smaller manufacturing companies to Casa Grande, as well as a major downtown redevelopment
project in Redlands, CA, that included multi-million dollar water, sewer and storm drain improvements and 42 façade improvements
of historic structures. During his tenure in Coconino County, Holmes worked to improve the criminal justice system by establishing
the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council in the area. As County Manager, he also made strides in regional water issues and led
the county through the development of its first five-year Capital Improvement Program.
Holmes' contributions to the field of local government management are both lasting and many in number. In addition to his work as
a public servant, Holmes has been an active volunteer in the communities in which he has served.
Steve Peru retired this past fall from his position as County Manager of Coconino County. Steve has been an active member of ACMA
for more than 20 years, and served five years on the Board of Directors.
Peru has dedicated nearly his entire adult life to serving the citizens of Coconino County. He started his career in 1979 as a
program coordinator in the community services department, advancing six years later to Director of the Coconino County Career
and Training Center. In his 30 years of service, Steve also held assignments as Interim Facilities & Finance Director, Elections
Director, Assistant to the County Manager, and was twice named Interim County Manager, before being appointed County Manager in 2006.
A major factor in Steve's success has been his love of the community. A true "servant leader," Steve continues to serve on many
During his tenure with the county, Steve led several key initiatives, including the county's success in financial planning and its
ability to weather the worst downturn in the economy since the Great Depression. Peru also led efforts to ensure the county's investment
in key assets, including parks and open space, the restoration of the Coconino County Courthouse and the construction of a new jail.
Steve was also at the helm during the county's worst year of natural disasters, including a record-breaking snow storm, a large wildfire,
flooding and tornadoes. For his dedication to public service and demonstrated success in leading the county through some of its most
difficult challenges, Steve serves as an exemplary local government manager.