Miami's downtown authority looks to Virginia planner as new director
By Susan Stabley
Miami's Downtown Development Authority will consider on Friday hiring a Manassas, VA, planning consultant for its vacant executive director position.
Dana Nottingham of Nottingham & Associates is the finalist for the city development agency, according to Miami Commissioner Johnny Winton, who said he had met Mr. Nottingham four or five times, including with Miami Mayor Manny Diaz.
"I like him a lot," Mr. Winton said. "I get the impression that we're getting a person with a very substantial background in both development and urban planning."
Mr. Nottingham also has extensive experience in dealing with governments due to his consulting background, Mr. Winton said, and the kind of people skills and leadership that can "take the DDA to the next kind of heights people expect the DDA to achieve."
Before voting Friday, board members are to meet Mr. Nottingham this afternoon (12/19) at the Miami City Club.
Annapolis, MD-based Joan Jorgenson Consulting was hired early this summer to cull a short list of candidates. Since then the list of possible finalists has been whittled away to one candidate.
Loretta Cockrum, authority board member and chair of the search committee, would not discuss the candidate by name, saying she wanted to wait until the full board had been able to consider the person, but she did comment on the search. More than 100 resumes were considered and candidates from California, Texas, Illinois, Virginia and others were interviewed, she said.
"We really went coast to coast for this one," Ms. Cockrum said.
The authority has been without a leader since March, when former director Patti Allen, who led Miami's effort to promote economic development in its commercial business district for seven years, resigned just weeks after Commissioner Winton took over the agency's chairmanship.
Ms. Allen had been paid slightly more than $98,000 a year and left with a severance package worth $83,156. Temporarily filling the void is full-time chief of staff Alonso Menendez, who has since served as acting director.
During the authority's executive committee meeting Dec. 13, top board members discussed Mr. Nottingham's contract, which would have full benefits, membership to the Miami City Club and, possibly, performance-based incentives.