SLO County department head resigns amid sexual harassment complaints

Daniel Colt Esenwein


Daniel Colt Esenwein resigned as director of the San Luis Obispo County Public Works Department following an investigation into allegations of sexual harassment made by several female employees, according to county sources.

During the investigation, Esenwein spent approximately a month on paid administrative leave. Esenwein submitted his resignation last week.

After former public works director Wade Horton became SLO County’s chief administrative officer in 2017, the county had a vacancy to fill. Following a lengthy selection process, in April 2018, the SLO County Board of Supervisors approved a contract that provided Esenwein $272,950 a year in total compensation.

Like Horton, Esenwein is a United States Navy veteran, having served in the Navy from 1990 to 1994. Esenwein also previously worked as the deputy public works director of Stanislaus County.

Cal Coast Times has submitted requests, under the Public Records Act, for records of the allegations and the investigation into sexual harassment.