The City Manager is appointed by the Mayor and City Council and, as the Chief Executive Officer of the City, is responsible to this governing body for the administration of all City affairs. The City Manager directs and supervises the administration of all departments, offices and agencies of the City.

The office of the City Manager serves as the focal point for executive leadership to ensure that programs and operations reflect the policy goals and objectives established by the Mayor and City Council.  This office holds the ultimate responsibility for the enforcement of all laws, provisions of the City Charter and City Council directives.

The City Manager develops, recommends and implements policies that guide the administrative and financial needs of the City with a focus on sustained fiscal health.  The City Manager is a moral representation of ethical behavior and understands that the City’s success depends on leadership’s ability to focus on excellence, set and achieve goals, serve others and to listen to the needs of the community.

James L. Gillis, Jr. is the City Manager for the City of South Daytona.  He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering and a Master of Science Degree in Engineering Management from the University of Central Florida.  He has worked for the City of South Daytona since 2003.  He started with the City as the Assistant Public Works Director and then held the Public Works Director position before being appointed City Manager in 2018.  He is a registered Professional Engineer in the State of Florida as well as an ICMA Credentialed City Manager.  

The City Manager can be reached by calling (386) 322-3014 or by email at