City of Suffolk announces leadership overhaul
Appointments for acting deputy city manager, economic development director announced
Following the late September resignation of former Suffolk City Manager Patrick Roberts, interim City Manager Albert Moor on Monday made several appointments to the administrative staff, including an acting deputy city manager.
Suffolk City Council accepted Roberts’ resignation during a special meeting after a closed session. The reason for his resignation was not released. After Roberts’ contract renewal last year, Johnson said that “Roberts was a sought-after commodity in the Hampton Roads region,” according to reports.
Kevin Hughes, who has served as the director of economic development since February 2010, has been appointed as acting deputy city manager, effective Nov. 12. He first started working for Suffolk in 2005 as a senior business development manager and has since been involved with more than 500 projects totaling more than $1 billion in capital investment and more than 700 new jobs.
Hughes also supervises the Division of Tourism and the Suffolk Executive Airport and serves as the deputy secretary treasurer for the Suffolk Economic Development Authority. He earned his bachelor’s degree from James Madison University and completed the Economic Development Institute at the University of Oklahoma.
In Hughes’ place, Gregory Byrd (the current assistant director of economic development), will become acting director of economic development, effective Nov. 12. Byrd has been with the city’s economic development office since April 2007. He previously was the deputy executive director for nonprofit Empowerment 2010 Inc., which managed workforce business and community development programs in Norfolk and Portsmouth.
Byrd earned his bachelor’s degree from the U.S. Naval Academy and his master’s degree in systems management from the University of Southern California. Like Hughes, he is also a graduate of the Economic Development Institute at the University of Oklahoma. Byrd is also a member of the International Economic Development Council, the Virginia Economic Developers Association, the Hampton Roads Association for Commercial Real Estate, the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce and is a former member on the Board of Trustees for LEAD Hampton Roads.
The city of Suffolk also announced the retirement of Chief of Staff Debbie George, effective Dec. 31. Azeez Felder, the current director of social services, will take her place. Harry Cromer, the current assistant director of social services, has been appointed as acting director of social services, effective Jan. 1.