WESTBROOK — The city’s economic and community development director, who vacated his post Saturday, is one of two department heads to resign in recent weeks.
Keith Luke, who was hired in 2008, submitted his resignation letter on Dec. 14, the same day as Chief Financial Officer Dawn Ouellette.
In his letter, Luke wrote that he is resigning “at this point to allow Mayor (Colleen) Hilton time to match skills with the priorities of her management team during her second term in office.”
Hilton will be inaugurated to her second term as mayor on Monday. One of the duties of the Westbrook mayor is to reappoint department heads at the inauguration.
At her first inauguration in 2010, Hilton created a stir when she announced she would not be reappointing the city’s fire chief, finance director or recreation director.
Hilton said today that there is no connection between the departure of Luke and Ouellette and the upcoming reappointments. She said she plans to reappoint all department heads.
Luke, who was hired in 2008 after holding a similar position in the town of Windham, said today that he resigned to pursue other job opportunities.
Ouellette was hired in 2010 as the first joint finance director for the city and school department – a position created by Hilton.
In her resignation letter, Ouellette cited recent health problems and the upcoming birth of her child, in conjunction with the demands of the job, as her reasons for leaving.
Ouellette’s last day of work is Feb. 3, the start of her planned maternity leave. She will be paid through the end of June.
Hilton said the city will begin looking for replacements immediately.