January 12, 2010 ? Mayor Jim Suttle today announced the appointments of Richard O?Gara and Melinda Pearson to the positions of Human Resources Director and Parks, Recreation and Public Property Department Director, respectively.
Richard O?Gara, Human Resources Director, brings nearly forty years of human resources experience to the City. A Nebraska native, he has strong ties to the Omaha community, having served as the Director of Human Resources at Peter Kiewit Sons, First Data, Mutual of Omaha and HDR. ?Richard brings a distinctive record of community service to this position,? Mayor Suttle said.
Richard O?Gara has served as President of the Heritage Joslyn Foundation, President of the Nebraska Humane Society and as a board member of the Omaha Community Playhouse. ?Richard?s extensive human resources experience will be a guiding force to evaluate and refine our Human Resources Department, to streamline hiring, institute an employee Wellness Program, and an OSHA compliant safety program. It is my goal and his to create the most responsive and responsible City government possible.?
Melinda Pearson, Parks, Recreation and Public Property Director, brings thirty years of architectural experience and fifteen years of experience managing her own business to the City of Omaha. She currently works in public service as the Executive Director of the State Board of Engineers and Architects. Pearson was instrumental in developing the Alexa Check initiative, a statewide public inspection process and public education campaign to improve the structural safety of park buildings statewide.
?Melinda?s vision and management skills will help continue the growth of Omaha?s park system, community centers and open spaces,? Mayor Suttle said. ?In addition, Melinda will play a key role in establishing an Omaha Parks Foundation. The Library Foundation is an instrumental part of the Omaha Public Library and such a public-private partnership must be extended to our Parks system, to create a sustainable source of funding that makes Omaha?s parks the treasures that our citizens deserve.?
?With these two appointments, I have now rounded out my cabinet and we are better positioned than ever before to meet the challenges facing our City head on,? Mayor Suttle said. Current Human Resources Director Tom Marfisi will continue his service to the City of Omaha as Labor Relations Director and current Acting Parks Director Steve Scarpello will return to his role as Parks Administrator.