Andy McGovern, an administrator in Tucson’s traffic engineering department and the person heading up the search, said the city should make an announcement about the hiring soon.
“We interviewed five applicants and are in the process of making an offer and selecting somebody to fill the position,” he said. “I hope to be able to announce within the next two weeks.”
McGovern would not say who they were offering the position to, but did say the final five candidates were narrowed down by the human resources department from a larger pool of applicants and were a mix of local and national planners.
The position became available when Tom Thivener left to become the head of Calgary, Alberta’s bicycle program in early May.
Ian Johnson, the chair of the Tucson-Pima County Bicycle Committee, participated in the hiring process and is impressed with how fast the city worked to fill the vacant position.
“The speed with which they have been able to find a replacement for Tom and get it through the system — knowing that it isn’t quite done —really shows how high a priority biking and walking is for the current mayor and council,” Johnson said.
McGovern wasn’t sure what role the mayor and council played in getting the ball rolling, but said the process has been speedy.
“It’s been a faster process than I have ever dealt with in refilling a position,” McGovern said. “I don’t know how much influence the mayor has had, but we have cooperation from human resources and the city managers office.”
The hiring comes shortly after the city hired a new transportation director from El Paso, Texas.