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Rod Brandon appointed Housing Operations Director

Brings extensive public administration experience from King County, Seattle

Rod Brandon

Rodrick Brandon

SEATTLE — January 5, 2010 — Rod Brandon has been hired to direct housing operations at the Seattle Housing Authority, replacing Don Ashlock, who will retire at the end of January after nearly ten years in this position.

"Rod Brandon brings a wealth of high level experience and a passion for public service," noted Executive Director Tom Tierney. "I am confident that he will contribute both vision and inspiring front-line leadership to our organization."

Brandon has held increasingly responsible leadership posts in the public sector for the past 25 years. He has been a top administrator and leader at both King County and the City of Seattle. As Assistant County Executive under Ron Sims, Brandon served as liaison between Sims and department heads, often managing complex and controversial issues within the departments.

Earlier in his career, as Deputy Chief of Staff under Mayor Norman Rice, Brandon managed and advised on a broad range of issues including public safety, human rights, business and economic development and regulatory reform. During his tenure with the City he also headed the Contracting Services Division, where he managed a staff of 75.

"I am excited at the quality of leadership and organizational wisdom Brandon offers," said Tierney. "I know we will benefit from his ability to work across organizational lines and listen carefully to employees and stakeholders alike."

Brandon most recently served under King County Executive Ron Sims as director of sustainability services. In this position, he implemented strategies for smart growth management, which included the acquisition of more than 160,000 acres of threatened land into King County ownership.

Brandon earned a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration from the University of Montana in Missoula and also attended the John F. Kennedy School of Government where he completed their summer program for senior executives in state and local government. Speaking of his own experience, he said, "With over twenty years experience in the public sector, and having lived in federal public housing, I am both proud and humbled to call myself a public servant. I consider the provision of affordable housing and healthy, supportive communities for local residents one of the most important functions of government."

Brandon will begin work with the Housing Authority on January 11, and will officially assume his responsibilities as Director of Housing Operations in late January when Ashlock retires.

Reflecting on how he will approach his new position, he said, "I know these transitions can be difficult. Early on, I will focus on building positive relationships, doing lots of listening and observing, and conveying my admiration for the work staff does. I will research the organization—its people, policies, practices, resources and challenges—and learn where the areas of strength lie and where there's work to be done.

"I will identify members of the team who are performing at high levels and possibly ready to take on more, and those who would benefit from additional development. I will share my passion for the important work of the Seattle Housing Authority and my vision for the organization, inviting staff to further shape this vision with their own ideas."

Housing Operations is the Housing Authority's largest department, employing more than 400 people out of the total workforce of 600. Staff members within this department include property managers, residential staff, trades people who help maintain properties and community services staff.