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The Indiana Daily Student

city politics

Mayor-elect Kerry Thomson announces leadership team

kerry thomson.jpeg

Bloomington mayor-elect Kerry Thomson announced Friday her appointees to lead the city’s various departments in an email to supporters. Elected after running unopposed in November 2023, Thomson and her newly appointed team will take office on Jan. 1, 2024. Here are her appointments: 

Deputy Mayor: Gretchen Knapp 

Thomson appointed Gretchen Knapp, the head of operations and marketing at the coworking space The Mill, as deputy mayor. According to her LinkedIn, Knapp has also served as vice president of marketing at Solution Tree, a Bloomington-based professional development company and educational material publisher.  

Jeffery Jones, the current CEO of Solution Tree, directly contributed a cumulative $7,000 to Thomson’s campaign, according to campaign finance documents. The listed contributor’s address on the form, 555 N. Morton St., is the same address as Solution Tree’s current address. 

City Controller: Jessica McClellan 

Current Monroe County Treasurer Jessica McClellan was appointed to City Controller, a position managing the city’s finances, budget and accounting systems. McClellan had previously run for state treasurer in 2022, losing to Republican Daniel Elliott. 

Deputy City Controller: Kurt Zorn 

Thomson appointed Kurt Zorn, an IU economist, professor and associate vice provost to Deputy City Controller, on an interim basis. The email states interim positions will be temporary as they conduct searches for full-time leadership. According to his IU webpage, Zorn is the president of the Bloomington Economic Development Commission and a member of the Indiana Finance Authority.  

Director of Community & Family Resources: Beverly Calender-Anderson 

Beverly Calender-Anderson has held this position since 2014 and announced her retirement earlier this year. However, she will be returning to serve on an interim basis. Calender-Anderson has previously served as the city’s Safe and Civil City Director, according to her LinkedIn profile.  

Corporation Counsel: Margie Rice  

Thomson appointed Margie Rice to serve as Corporation Counsel, leading the city’s legal department. According to her LinkedIn, Rice graduated from Butler University and received her law degree from the Indiana University Maurer School of Law. Rice currently works as an attorney for Dobbs & Folz, LLC, which specializes in wealth succession and transfers for farms and family businesses.  

“If you own a family farm or family business and haven’t yet implemented plans to pass your assets on to the next generation, a complicated and potentially explosive process awaits your heirs. Hurt feelings. Excessive taxes. Inadequate protection of assets,” the company’s description on LinkedIn reads. 

Director of Economic and Sustainable Development Department: Jane Kupersmith 

Jane Kupersmith, the current executive director at Community Development Financial Institutions Friendly Bloomington, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit granting loans to businesses and projects in Bloomington, was appointed as director of the city’s Economic and Sustainable Development Department. According to her LinkedIn, Kupersmith also served as Bloomington’s assistant director for Small Business Development from 2020-2022. 

City Engineer: Andrew Cibor 

Thomson reappointed Andrew Cibor as City Engineer. The city’s engineering department, starting in 2021, has largely focused on transportation and traffic in Bloomington. Cibor has also served as city traffic engineer for Ashville, North Carolina from 2018-2021, according to his Linkedin. 

Fire Chief: Jason Moore 

Jason Moore will be reappointed as Bloomington’s Fire Chief, having served in the position since 2016 according to his LinkedIn. Moore has also served in the Air Force and several fire departments in South Carolina. In a 2018 Indiana Daily Student feature, Moore described his focus on implementing support systems for firefighters and medical professionals, who often have extreme difficulty dealing with the stress and grief that comes with their jobs. 

Director of the Human Resources Department: Sharmaine Pechac 

Thomson appointed Sharmaine Pechac as director of the Human Resources Department. According to her LinkedIn profile, Pechac founded Greypoint Consulting, a consulting firm focused on operational efficiency and talent acquisition and is a senior certified professional by the Society for Human Resource Management. 

Director of Information and Technology Services: Rick Dietz 

Rick Dietz was reappointed to serve as Director of Information and Technology Services, having served in this position since 2004.  

Director of Parks and Recreation: Tim Street 

Current director of Operations and Development Tim Street was appointed to Parks and Recreation director. According to his LinkedIn, Street has served as an instructor for IU Outdoor Adventures since 2008 and was an associate director of Bradford Woods between 2010-2020. 

Police Chief: Mike Diekhoff 

Mike Diekhoff, who has served as Bloomington’s police chief since 2008 according to the email announcement, was reappointed to his position. Diekhoff has served on Bloomington’s police department since 1987 and studied criminal justice at IU according to his LinkedIn. 

Director of Public Works: Adam Wason 

Thomson reappointed Adam Wason as director of Bloomington’s Department of Public Works. According to the announcement, Wason has served in this position since 2016, and has previously served as deputy mayor and as the city’s communications director. 

Public Utilities Director: John Langley 

Thomson appointed John Langley, a retired deputy director of Public Utilities, as interim director of Public Utilities.  

Unfilled Roles 

The position of Deputy City Controller and departments of Planning, Housing and Neighborhood Development, Community and Family Resources and Utilities are currently without appointees or on an interim basis. However, the announcement said additional appointments will be announced later in December. 

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