- The Washington Times - Monday, November 13, 2006

D.C. Mayor-elect Adrian M. Fenty yesterday picked Neil O. Albert to be his deputy mayor for planning and economic development and announced he would eliminate the three other deputy mayor positions.

Mr. Albert, 46, served as deputy mayor for children, youth, families and elders from June 2004 to September 2005 under Mayor Anthony A. Williams.

“It’s an honor to be named by the new mayor to this position,” Mr. Albert said yesterday.

He said he planned to draw on his experience in city government, in which he also served as director of the Department of Parks and Recreation from April 2001 to June 2004.

He said he was “extremely excited” to be a part of Mr. Fenty’s administration and looked forward to engaging the community and creating a business-friendly environment within the District.

Mr. Albert currently serves as president and chief executive officer of EdBuild, a D.C. nonprofit that partners with public schools to provide facility development services and education support. He holds a master’s degree in business from the New York Institute of Technology.

Mr. Williams last month nominated Mr. Albert for a seat on the D.C. Sports and Entertainment Commission, one of more than two dozen nominations that the outgoing mayor withdrew earlier this month.

Mr. Fenty called Mr. Albert a “star from the Williams administration.”

“I want people who don’t have their own agenda, just the agenda of the city’s best interest. And that’s transparent when someone knows their craft, is willing to listen to other people and has the ability to make a decision also,” Mr. Fenty said.

The mayor-elect said he had spoken with some council members about Mr. Albert’s appointment and that they were “effusive” in their praise and expressed confidence that lawmakers could work with him.

Mr. Fenty also said that he would provide oversight of agencies that formerly answered to a deputy mayor, such as the police and fire departments.

“That’s what I was elected to do,” he said during an interview with editors and reporters at The Washington Times.

Mr. Williams implemented the deputy mayor system in December 1999.

Mr. Albert will replace Stanley Jackson, who has worked as the deputy mayor of planning and economic development since July 2001.

The other slots are currently vacant.

Herbert R. Tillery, the deputy mayor for operations, resigned last week.

Brenda Donald-Walker, who replaced Mr. Albert as deputy mayor for children, youth, families and elders, has also submitted her resignation.

Ed Reiskin, deputy mayor for public safety and justice, has been serving since September as the interim city administrator.

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