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The shuffle on the city org chart caused by the resignation of Department of Employment Services chief Summer Spencer earlier this week has now shaken out a little more completely. On Tuesday, Mayor Adrian M. Fenty announced his current chief of staff, Tene Dolphin, will replace Spencer at DOES; communications chief Carrie S. Brooks takes over for Dolphin as chief of staff.
In a late press release, the mayor’s office announced that Mafara Hobson, who had been press chief for schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee, will replace Brooks as director of communications.
Taking Hobson’s spot at 825 North Capitol will be Dena Iverson, who has been press secretary in the mayor’s office. Says Iverson, “I’m really excited that the mayor has allowed me to take on this important role of speaking for the most important agency in the District government,” Iverson says. (“Most important,” eh? Aggrieved employees of other departments, please vent in the comments.)
Iverson became press secretary in January, taking over as the primary media contact for the Fenty administration, allowing Brooks to focus on strategic and policymaking concerns. Whether someone will fill the “press secretary” role is “to be determined,” says Iverson.
All the shuffling takes place after Labor Day. Full release after jump.
Government of the District of Columbia
Executive Office of the Mayor
For Immediate Release
August 15, 2008
Fenty Announces Two New Communications Appointments
Washington, DC – Mayor Adrian M. Fenty announced the appointment of Mafara Hobson as his director of communications and Dena Iverson as the press secretary for District of Columbia Public Schools. Hobson and Iverson have been with the Fenty Administration’s communications team since the Mayor took office in January 2007. They will start their new positions in September.
Mafara L. Hobson
Director of Communications, Executive Office of the Mayor
Since graduating from Howard University’s School of Communications in 1998, Mafara Hobson has enjoyed nearly 10 years of hands-on experience in the field of public relations and communications.
Hobson joined the Fenty administration in fall 2007 as deputy communications director of Mayor-elect Fenty’s transition team, and continued as the Mayor’s deputy communications director after his inauguration, serving as the point of contact for all local and national media. Shortly after the Mayor successfully secured oversight of the city’s troubled public school system, Hobson transitioned from the Executive Office of the Mayor to serve as the press secretary for the newly appointed District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) Chancellor Michelle Rhee.
Her career in the District of Columbia began at the Coalition for Nonprofit Housing and Economic Development (CNHED), a local association that supports and drives affordable housing and economic development in DC, where she was communications director. In addition, she’s served as the communications manager for the National Capital Revitalization Corporation (NCRC), a now defunct, quasi- government organization charged with spurring neighborhood economic development and revitalization.
Press Secretary, District of Columbia Public Schools
Dena Iverson began her service in District Government with the start of the Fenty administration in January 2007 as a communications specialist in the Executive Office of the Mayor. She was named press secretary in January 2008, serving as the primary point of contact within the Mayor’s office for all local and national media and working with public safety agencies and agencies dealing with crises to coordinate messaging and media relations. Prior to joining the Fenty administration, Iverson was the director of communications for New York City Councilmember James Gennaro, chair of the Council’s Environmental Protection Committee, executing all media relations and outreach for the Councilmember on legislative and district issues. In 2004, Iverson was the deputy communications director for Jamie Metzl, a Democratic candidate for Congress in Kansas City, Mo.
Iverson started her political career with the State Public Interest Research Groups (PIRG) serving as chair of Ohio PIRG Student Board of Directors for two years as well as serving on the Board of Directors for the US PIRG Education Fund. She was also an assistant director for a grassroots campaign office in Columbus, Ohio for the Fund for Public Interest Research, the fundraising arm of the State PIRGs. A native of New York City, Iverson graduated from New York City Public Schools and received her bachelor’s degree in politics from Oberlin College in Ohio.