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Varghese promoted to chief of staff

Wednesday, May 18, 2016 by Jo Clifton

Mayor Steve Adler has announced the promotion of Lesley Varghese, who recently returned from maternity leave, to chief of staff. Her previous title was special assistant to the mayor. According to mayoral spokesman Jason Stanford, Varghese will continue to cover land use and zoning but will add other topics to her purview. The mayor’s former chief of staff, John-Michael Cortez, is now titled special assistant to the mayor and will be focusing on transportation and the rewrite of the city’s land development code, known as CodeNEXT. Jim Wick is now director of City Council affairs. Wick, who started his career with Adler during Adler’s successful campaign for mayor in 2014, was previously titled director of community engagement. Sly Majid will be handling veterans affairs, while Nancy Cardenas is in charge of constituent services and Barbara Shack continues to serve as the mayor’s executive assistant. Altogether, Adler has 15 staff members, full-time and part-time, including high-level volunteers Sherri Greenberg, Joene Grissom and Ashton Cumberbatch, as well as interns, Stanford said, pointing out that the changes will not add one penny to the overall cost of the mayor’s office.

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