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Muriel Bowser‘s hardhat says “mayor-elect,” and she means it. Bowser headed to Ward 8 this morning to announce the co-chairs of her mayoral transition committee, and asked the D.C. Council to let them do their jobs by holding off on approving many appointees from lame duck mayor Vince Gray.
Standing on the site of a future city office building in Anacostia, Bowser named her transition committee co-chairs: former Superior Court judge Mary Terrell, hotel union head John Boardman, former Pepco exec Beverly Perry, Mary’s Center CEO Maria Gomez, and former Office of Management and Budget director Alice Rivlin.
Former mayors Marion Barry, Sharon Pratt, Anthony Williams, and Adrian Fenty are honorary co-chairs. It’s not clear what role they’ll actually play, if any, although Bowser said Barry has already told her what he wants her administration to do for Ward 8.
Bowser’s co-chairs will each handle a subject area in the transition, which will be made up of eight committees. Bowser said it was too early to name most of the committees, but one of them will focus on economic development and jobs.
The new administration’s transition website has already received 400 resumes, according to Bowser. A similar rush for work hamstrung Gray’s early administration, when jobs were handed out to staffers’ relatives and fringe mayoral candidate Sulaimon Brown. Keeping the Gray administration’s brush with nepotism in mind, Bowser says her own transition committee staffers have to sign an ethics pledge.
While Bowser’s transition staffers sort through resumes, the mayor-elect wants the Council to leave spaces for her nominees by holding off voting on officials proposed by Gray in his final months. Bowser says she’ll meet with Council chairman Phil Mendelson to see which positions can be left open until she takes office, listing her criteria as whether a board or department could function with the spot vacant.
“I think that the voters decided in April that we would have a new mayor,” Bowser said.
Photo by Darrow Montgomery