Mayor Rogero Announces Changes in Public Works

Communications Director

Eric Vreeland
evreeland@knoxvilletn.gov
(865) 215-3480

400 Main St., Room 654A
Knoxville, TN 37902

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News item

Mayor Rogero Announces Changes in Public Works

Posted: 08/24/2015
David BraceWith major projects and initiatives underway in several departments, Mayor Madeline Rogero today announced leadership changes in City Public Works and Public Service.

David Brace, the City’s Director of Public Service, will be promoted to Senior Director of Public Works, starting Sept. 7. In that role, he will supervise five City departments: Engineering, Fleet Services, Parks and Recreation, Plans Review and Inspections, and Public Service. Those departments have 525 employees combined and more than $90 million in budgeted resources.

Brace will report to Christi Branscom, Deputy to the Mayor and Chief Operating Officer. The Public Works position was previously held by Branscom and has been vacant for the past two years, with all of the departments reporting directly to her. 

“David has done a great job modernizing our Public Service Department and making sure we are providing effective, efficient service to all of our customers,” Mayor Rogero said. “He will bring the same focus and energy to all of our Public Works departments, which will allow Christi to devote more time to our economic development efforts.”

Branscom will join Deputy to the Mayor and Chief Policy Officer Bill Lyons, incoming Director of Redevelopment Dawn Michelle Foster and incoming Deputy Director of Redevelopment Anne Wallace in a newly created Economic Development Team. This group will work with developers, City departments and other agencies to coordinate the creation and implementation of redevelopment projects. (Foster and Wallace will assume their new roles on Aug. 31, after the retirement of Redevelopment Director Bob Whetsel.)

To fill Brace’s position in the Public Service Department, Chad Weth will be promoted from Deputy Director to Director of Public Service. Sheryl Ely, a Senior Planner with the City of Oak Ridge, will join Weth as the new Deputy Director of Public Service. 
                
Among the major projects Brace will direct in his new role are: construction of the City’s new Public Works Complex on Loraine Street, which will house portions of the Engineering, Public Service and Fleet departments; the implementation of new, unified work-order technology, which will standardize work orders and communications across departments; the implementation of a new Automatic Vehicle Locator (AVL) system for city vehicles, which will improve accountability and service schedules; and the rebidding of the City’s solid waste contract in 2016.

Biographical information:

David Brace has an undergraduate degree in human ecology (community health) and a Master’s degree in planning, both from the University of Tennessee.  He started working for the City of Knoxville in 2002 in Community Development before moving to Public Service in 2004. After serving as Deputy Director, he was appointed Public Service Director by Mayor Rogero in 2011. Prior to joining the City of Knoxville, Brace was a firefighter/EMT in Knox County for Rural Metro Corp. and worked as a consultant in the industrial rescue and safety field. He is married to Gina Knapp Brace. They have three children and live in the Island Home neighborhood.
                                                     
Chad WethChad Weth has an undergraduate degree in psychology from the University of Tennessee and a Master’s degree in industrial/organizational psychology from University of Tennessee Chattanooga. He also has a certification as a Senior Professional in Human Resources.

Weth first worked for the City in the Civil Service Department before leaving to work for Covenant Health from 2007-2009. He returned to the City as a member of the Public Service Department administration. Weth was appointed Deputy Director of Public Service in 2012.

He is married to Nicki Weth and they have two children. 

Sheryl ElySheryl Ely, a native of Charlotte, N.C., holds an undergraduate degree in community health from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and a Master’s degree in planning from the University of Tennessee.

Her work experience includes nine years with the State of Tennessee’s Local Planning Assistance Office as a planner, including six years as the Regional Director. Ely also worked for the Knox County Health Department as a Public Health Educator, before joining the City of Oak Ridge as a Senior Planner.

She is married to Wendell Ely, and they have two children.