Santa Rosa, CA – May 21, 2020 – County Administrator Sheryl Bratton today announced the appointment of Paul Gullixson, Associate Vice President of Strategic Communications at Sonoma State University and former Editorial Director for The Press Democrat, to serve as Communications Manager for Sonoma County, starting June 29. Mr. Gullixson’s appointment follows an extensive recruitment process, where his qualifications and experience in communications, public relations and leadership resulted in his selection as the successful candidate.
“We’re fortunate to appoint someone with Paul’s professional expertise, background in the community and team-building skills to assume the role as head of the County’s centralized Communications Department,” said Bratton. “We look forward to having him on board.”
As Associate Vice President of Strategic Communications, Mr. Gullixson has served as communications chief and public information officer for Sonoma State where he managed a staff of six including writers, graphic designers and digital specialists. Prior to joining the university in 2018, Mr. Gullixson worked for nearly 20 years at The Press Democrat as columnist and editorial writer including 10 years as Editorial Director, overseeing the newspaper’s Editorial Board and opinion pages.
Mr. Gullixson also has served as an adjunct faculty member at Sonoma State University, where he taught newspaper writing and editing and served as faculty adviser to the Sonoma State Star, the campus newspaper. He also taught courses in web and print journalism and media ethics and law. Before joining The Press Democrat, Mr. Gullixson was Peninsula Bureau Chief for the San Francisco Chronicle.
He has written two history books and received numerous journalism awards, including New York Times Co. Chairman’s Award for editorial writing and various honors from the California Newspaper Publishers Association. He also was recognized for his work covering the Sonoma Complex fires of October 2017.
“I’m truly honored to have received this appointment and look forward to getting started,” said Gullixson. “There’s so much communications work being done in this time of COVID19, and I’m eager to lend a hand as soon as possible.”
As Communications Manager, Mr. Gullixson will oversee a centralized communications team engaged in public information and communication activities within the County Administrator’s Office. Mr. Gullixson will serve as the official channel of communication between the County and the public. A primary area of responsibility will be ensuring information about the County's initiatives and programs reach Sonoma County's diverse communities. Mr. Gullixson’s starting annual salary will be $157,536.