Gigi Decavalles-Hughes has been appointed as the new director of finance for the city of Santa Monica.

Decavalles-Hughes, who served as acting director of finance since September, will replace Carol Swindell, who resigned for family reasons, Deputy City Manager Kate Vernez said.

“Gigi has proven skill in all aspects of financial management and budgeting. Her strategic thinking has served the city well in maintaining and strengthening the city’s fiscal position,” City Manager Rod Gould said. “Under Gigi’s leadership, the department will continue to provide the highest level of financial accountability to the Santa Monica community.”

As director of finance, Decavalles-Hughes will be responsible for preparation of an operating budget of over $596 million. The department’s operating budget is $25 million with approximately 86 employees.

“It is an honor to lead the finance department and continue the tradition of strong fiscal management that has enabled the city of Santa Monica to maintain its excellent financial standing,” said Decavalles-Hughes. “I am proud to lead a group of highly talented and dedicated individuals.”

From October 2009 to September 2011, Decavalles-Hughes served as administrative services officer for the Housing and Economic Development Department, where she led a team in completion of over $100 million in redevelopment financing through a bank loan and a bond issuance.

She also previously served as senior administrative analyst for the Community and Cultural Services Department, where she was responsible for financial forecasts, operating and capital budgets, and for developing financial structures for new programs including the Annenberg Community Beach House.

Among other budget positions for the finance department, Decavalles-Hughes served as budget manager from February 1997 until May 2001.