LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 17, 2013) — Stressing the importance of strong leadership for the city, Mayor Jim Gray on Thursday announced seven mid-term permanent and temporary staff appointments, moving a woman into Lexington’s top management position, a first for the city.
“This city needs and deserves exceptional, experienced leadership,” Gray said. “We’ve learned a lot in the past two years about the talents and abilities of these people. And what’s true for sports, is true for management … you gotta play to your strengths.
Gray said the recent departure of Finance and Administration Commissioner Jane Driskell, who is Gov. Steve Beshear’s State Budget Director, gave him an opportunity to “examine current roles, responsibilities, skill sets of staff members and make adjustments and realignments.”
The mayor announced these changes:
♦ Sally Hamilton will be the city’s Chief Administrative Officer (CAO). Hamilton, who has worked in a variety of key management positions in state government, is currently serving as Commissioner of the Department of General Services. Gray described her as a “utility in-fielder, a strong manager and a problem solver.” She becomes the first woman to serve as the city’s CAO. (Hamilton holds a Ph.D. in German from the University of Kentucky and she has completed post graduate work in public administration).
♦ Richard Moloney has been named Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Quality and Public Works. Moloney currently has a dual role as CAO and Department Commissioner. Gray said the Department needs a common-sense, hands-on manager.
“Richard’s experience leading the state’s Department of Housing, Buildings and Construction makes him well suited to lead this department,” Gray said.
♦ Geoff Reed will be the new Commissioner of General Services, returning to the Gray administration to replace Hamilton. Reed has considerable experience in government, at both the state and federal level. He left the Gray administration last spring to serve as senior advisor to former Congressman Ben Chandler.
♦ Bill O’Mara, Director of the Division of Revenue, will serve as acting Commissioner of Finance and Administration, while the search for Driskell’s replacement continues. O’Mara has said he is not interested in a permanent appointment.
♦ Glenn Brown has been named Deputy Chief Administrative Officer. Brown formerly served as the city’s Director of Community Corrections, the first African American to do so.
♦ Tom Blues, who stepped down this December as Second District Councilmember, will become an aide to the Mayor and will work on a variety of projects. Blues is a retired University of Kentucky professor.
♦ Melissa Lueker, a former assistant to the CAO, has been named acting director of the Division of Budgeting. Lueker has considerable experience in public finance. Before coming to the city she worked in Frankfort in the budget office of the Legislative Research Commission.