The boundary between public service and private enterprise in the District’s development world is a very porous one, crossed frequently by people hoping to get some experience in government who then become valuable to companies that do business with it. Just a couple examples from the days immediately following the election: former Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development-turned-City Administrator Neil Albert went to the law firm Holland & Knight, and development director David Jannarone joined Hunt Development. Yesterday, the Office of Zoning announced that its director Jamison Weinbaum had followed them through that revolving door, joining big-time area developer JBG.
Weinbaum had only been there for two years, after working on big projects with the deputy mayor’s office. He’s also no stranger to private development, having been employed by townhouse builder EYA before that. The OZ director, who makes $128,750 and is appointed by the Zoning Commission, is a purely administrative employee. But Weinbaum did give us the fabulous interactive zoning map, so vision still matters. Is his departure an example in the scandal-driven brain drain phenomenon that Loose Lips identified this week? Maybe, but I don’t really know enough to say.