Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski today appointed Leonard Lightner interim director of the Department of Community & Economic Development.
Lightner was named DCED Operations Manager in February. He has been with the city since 2008 beginning as housing rehabilitation supervisor in the Bureau of Building Standards & Safety. He became risk and safety manager in the Human Resources Department in 2014 where he served until becoming operations manager.
“Leonard has been an outstanding leader, manager and organizer while obtaining positive results,” said Pawlowski. “As risk and safety manager he achieved a workers’ comp cost reduction of 45% in two years and cost reduction of 60% in two years with our motor vehicle accidents and liability incidents.”
As housing rehabilitation supervisor, Lightner managed, coached, mentored, evaluated and oversaw a team of 12 personnel. He also managed grants, special projects, investigations of citizen complaints, inspection teams, housing rehabilitation teams and an emergency housing team.
“I want to thank Mayor Pawlowski for this tremendous opportunity,” Lightner said. “The department is hard working. I am very proud to lead the team and to serve as the department’s representative across this city. DCED provides a number of key services for our residents and important functions from a planning and zoning perspective. We will continue to tackle those duties responsibly.”
Lightner is a retired Command Sergeant Major from the U.S. Army. His service record includes multiple combat tours in Operation Desert Storm, Iraq and Afghanistan.
Lightner holds a B.A. in Business Management from Muhlenberg College and is completing a Master of Theology program from Moravian Theological Seminary.
The director of DCED supervises a number of city bureaus, including planning, health, building standards and safety, economic development, community development and the city’s federal Community Development Block Grant program. Among other responsibilities, the director develops an annual operating and capital budget for the department and serves on various commissions, like Allentown Economic Development Corporation.
Lightner will earn $102,000 as interim director.