Mayor-elect Andy Schor has announced the 12 members of his cabinet. Four are new faces to city government and eight are familiar ones. Here’s who’s who and what they’re doing.
New Linda Sanchez Gazella, chief of staff to former Mayor Tony Benavides, will return to City Hall to join the Schor team as director of human resources. Gazella is the executivedirector of the Retired Senior Volunteer Program of Ingham, Eaton and Clinton counties. She worked for the Lansing School District and former Mayor David Hollister. She replaces Mary Riley, a Bernero appoin tee.
Andrew Kilpatrick, the city’s transportation engineer, has been named public service director. The department oversees roads, sidewalks, snow plowing and city properties, among other things. During Kilpatrick’s 19 years with the city he has managed traffic engineering, parking operations and non-motorized transportation. He oversees transportation in his current post, including traffic engineering and operations, non-motorized planning and implementation, and intelligent transportation systems.
Kilpatrick will replace Chad Gamble, who served as both director of public service and chief operating officer for the city under Bernero.
Andrea Crawford will run the new Department of Neighborhoods and Citizen Engagement. She was hired by the city in 2014 to work with neighborhoods and neighborhood leaders. In 2016 she was appointed neighborhood resource coordinator. This work has garnered national recognition as part of the Cities of Service coalition and the Robert Wood Johnson Invest Health program.
Brian McGrain will be the director of economic development and planning. McGrain serves as the associate director/ chief operating officer of the Community Economic Development Association of Michigan, where he oversees budget and finances, fundraising, grants management, training, and communication efforts. He is serving his fifth term on the Ingham County Board of Commissioners He serves on the Tri-County Regional Planning Commission, the Ingham County Economic Development Corp, the Ingham County Land Bank and the Greater Lansing Convention and Visitors Bureau.
McGrain and Crawford will replace Bob Johnson, who has served as the director of planning and neighborhood development during Bernero’s 12 years in office.
Staying on Angela Bennett will continue to oversee the Finance Department. Bennett has 20 years of municipal finance experience, including 12 for the City of Lansing. Previously she worked for the City of Kalamazoo.
Collin Boyce will remain chief information officer. His primary responsibility include strategic technology issues: governance and policy, resource allocation, information security and assurance, and information technology services.
Tammy Good remains treasurer. She has worked for the City of Lansing for 22 years. She has been on the board of directors for the Michigan Municipal Treasurers Association since 2013 and is a Michigan certified public treasurer and certified public funds investment manager.
Joan Jackson-Johnson will continue to head the Human Relations and Community Services Department, its director since 2006. She is a clinical psychologist and principal owner of the East Lansing Center for the Family.
Brett Kaschinske will continue as director of parks and recreation. Kaschinske has worked for the Department since 1993 and has been director since 2011. He is serving as president of MParks, the parks and recreation association for Michigan.
Jim Smiertka will continue as city attorney. He has served as city attorney since July 2016 and previously held the position from 1994 to 2004. His prior municipal experience includes 11 years as deputy city attorney for Pontiac and assistant city attorney for Kalamazoo.
Randy Talifarro will continue as chief of the Lansing’s Fire Department. He has 34 years’ experience in fire services and has been with the City of Lansing since 2001.
He worked in Flint for 17 years. He is a certified professional emergency manager and fire inspector. This post will continue as a shared position between the Lansing and East Lansing.
Mike Yankowski will continue to run the Lansing Police Department. Yankowski has been with the LPD for 23 years. He has served the last four years as chief. He was instrumental in developing and executing the implementation of the Data Driven Approach to Crime and Traffic Safety, Gang Resistance Education and Training, Capitol Area Violent Crime Initiative , Crisis Intervention Teams, and the Body Worn Camera Program at the Lansing Police Department.