Mayor Newsom defends Conroy after demotion
Bay City News Service
October 5, 2006
SAN FRANCISCO (BCN) - San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom
is standing by Annemarie Conroy, one day after the Board of Supervisors
effectively demoted her in a re- arrangement of city emergency
Newsom appointed Conroy as executive director of the Office of
Emergency Services and Homeland Security, known at city hall as
OES/HS, in July 2005.
About six months ago, the mayor hired Laura Phillips to direct
the city's Emergency Communications Department.
The supervisors' action on Tuesday created an umbrella Department
of Emergency Management to oversee emergency services and communications,
with Phillips in charge. Conroy was to start her work day today
as the deputy director for emergency services, reporting to Phillips
instead of directly to the mayor.
Newsom spokeswoman Jennifer Petrucione said today it's not entirely
clear how the new management structure will shake out, but "by
any objective standard, Annemarie Conroy has done an excellent
job as director of OES/HS.''
"San Francisco has updated emergency plans for the first
time in a decade since Annemarie took over,'' Petrucione said.
Another Newsom appointee who was later elected, Supervisor Michela
Alioto-Pier, has been among those who have publicly scrutinized
Conroy's qualifications. Alioto-Pier told supervisors on Tuesday,
"This position requires someone who can do the job, not because
they're a quick study, but because it's a life they have lived.''
Tuesday's board action requires the director of emergency management
to have at least 10 years experience in emergency services and
five years experience in a management position. The vote to create
the Department of Emergency Management was unanimous, 11-0.
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