The former mayor of Lebanon, Jackie Parker, has been named the director of community and economic development for Harrisburg, according to a news release from Mayor Eric Papenfuse's office.
Parker’s position will be underwritten for the first year by the Harrisburg Regional Chamber and Capital Region Economic Development Corp. CREDC has pledged to continue subsidizing the post at 50 percent in the second and third years, Papenfuse said.
The city will take over full funding in year four.
City and CREDC officials were not immediately available for comment on her salary.
Parker, who recently served as the executive director of the Chester Economic Development Authority, will supervise a team that includes Roy Christ as director of building and housing and Lenwood Sloan as director of arts, culture and tourism.
Sloan’s department will assume duties of the former Department of Parks and Recreation, Papenfuse said.
“Under Parker’s leadership, we will have a team of professionals dedicated to stimulating our economy, providing jobs for our citizens and restoring pride and prosperity to our capital city,” Papenfuse said. “I know Roy Christ and Lenwood Sloan will add considerable expertise, creativity and dynamism to our economic development team. They will ensure Harrisburg is on the move.”
The new mayor also cited Parker’s role in the creation of the Community Action Team while serving as deputy secretary of community affairs and development for the commonwealth under Gov. Ed Rendell.
Dave Black, president and CEO of the Harrisburg Regional Chamber and CREDC, said the collaboration will bring vital support for the new administration’s efforts to reinvigorate the city’s economy.
“It demonstrates regional support for the city, but more importantly it shares the optimism throughout the region for the city, as well supporting Eric’s shared vision for Harrisburg,” Black said in the statement. “We also believe Jackie Parker is exactly the right person to help Harrisburg for urban development and living for our state and nation.”
The new mayor rolled out his other cabinet members on Wednesday. They included:
• Neil Grover, city solicitor
• Karl Singleton, senior adviser for education and youth
• Bruce Weber, finance director
• Aaron Johnson, director of public works
• Catherine Stetler, special assistant to the mayor
• Joyce Davis, communications director
Papenfuse also announced the appointment of two members to the Capital Area Transit board: Lenora Smith, a Harrisburg attorney, and Kathy Possinger, executive director of Tri County Community Action.