The search for a new president of the Center City Development Corporation (CCDC), the often-controversial quasi-public entity that oversees downtown redevelopment projects, has entered its final phase-its board of directors is scheduled to interview candidates this week.
The list of finalists is a closely guarded secret, but, according to insiders close to the selection process, it has been whittled down to nine candidates.
On Tuesday, Darren Pudgil, chief of staff for county Supervisor Ron Roberts, confirmed that his boss is one of the people being considered for the position. "Supervisor Roberts has been approached by CCDC and will be meeting with them in the near future," Pudgil said.
The news that Roberts is talking to CCDC has significant implications in city and county political spheres, although Pudgil said Roberts' decision to discuss the post would have no immediate impact on his upcoming race to defend his seat in the county's Fourth District. Roberts has already held several campaign events in anticipation of that race.
Deputy Mayor Tony Atkins, a possible challenger, supported Roberts' decision. "Given Supervisor Roberts' history with downtown and his experience there, he is a very appropriate candidate to be considered by the CCDC board," Atkins said in a written statement. "I wish him the best in the process." Atkins' partner, Jennifer LeSar, who sits on CCDC's board of directors, did not respond to CityBeat's request for comment.
City Manager Lamont Ewell, who announced last November that he would resign his post in June and later delayed his departure to December, is rumored to be one of the candidates on CCDC's short list.
As of press time, Ewell had not responded to CityBeat's request to comment on the rumor.
A CCDC spokesman said the compensation package for the president and COO position includes a $220,500 salary, a $500 monthly automobile allowance and the possibility of bonuses.Roberts or another one of the applicants will replace Peter Hall, who announced his retirement in January after a decade at the helm of the organization.