To improve city’s resilience and racial equity
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (April 14, 2017) — Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer today appointed Eric Friedlander chief resilience officer and Kellie Watson chief equity officer with the aim of improving the city’s resilience and improving racial equity.
“Our city has been experiencing exceptional growth over the past seven years — $9 billion in investments, and tens of thousands of new jobs. But we have to make sure we’re growing the right way,” Fischer said. “Under Eric and Kellie, our resilience and equity efforts will collaborate — because we know our most vulnerable citizens are often the hardest hit by crises. Together, they will move forward to strengthen and better prepare our city for the big challenges of today and tomorrow.”
Friedlander will lead the city’s efforts to help prepare for, withstand, and bounce back from chronic stresses and acute shocks. Watson will lead the city’s bid to improve racial equity within Louisville Metro’s policies and practices.
Friedlander has served as director of the city’s Department of Community Services since December 2015. He previously served as deputy secretary of the state Cabinet for Health & Family Services and other agency leadership roles.
Watson spent nearly three years as the city’s general counsel. She was previously the city’s human resources director and the director of the Louisville Metro Human Relations Commission.
Her new assignment will focus on ensuring that policies and practices — on matters ranging from hiring and promotions to procurement procedures — throughout Louisville Metro Government align with Fischer’s goal of improving racial equity in the city. Both the Department of Human Resources and the Human Relations Commission will report to Watson.