By Jeff Gallatin
A veteran safety and service professional with extensive Westshore experience will be starting as North Olmsted’s safety/service director Feb. 3.
Don Glauner, who spent nine years as the city of Westlake’s service director, as well as 14 years as a police officer and working as a property maintenance officer was picked Monday to replace Scott Thomas, who resigned in November to join the Bay Village service department, where he recently was named director.
“Don has the right experience in both safety and service to meet the incredible challenges that this job will bring,” Kennedy said.
Kennedy said Glauner had been high on the list of candidates since the beginning.
Kennedy said he interviewed 10 potential candidates for the job.
“There were some strong candidates out there since there are some changing administrations out there and I wanted to talk to several,” Kennedy said. “But, I stayed in touch with him (Glauner) and I know he’ll do a good job for the city.”
Glauner, has been serving as the facilities director for First Federal of Lakewood since leaving Westlake in 2010. Mayor Dennis Clough had initially moved Glauner to another position in the service department expressing concern about having Glauner in that position at the same time as Glauner’s wife Pam was serving as the mayor’s executive assistant. The Westlake charter had provisions for the service director serving as acting mayor when the mayor is out of town or incapacitated. Clough expressed concern about possible public perception of nepotism if Glauner had to be acting mayor at the same time his wife was executive assistant. The Ohio Ethics Commission later downplayed the concerns, but Clough moved ahead with seeking another director, then let Glauner go after another service director was hired. Ironically, Pam Glauner now serves as an administrative assistant in the North Olmsted Fire Department.
Glauner said he’s looking forward to the new job.
“We won’t have to reinvent the wheel here since North Olmsted has a strong service and safety department and staff,” he said. “Scott Thomas did a good job and left a strong organization in place. I’m looking forward to working with everybody in North Olmsted.”
Glauner said he thought his strong experience in both safety and service was a big part of Kennedy selecting him for the position. Early in his first term as mayor, Kennedy had spearheaded a proposal to get a charter amendment allowing mayors with council approval to restructure their departments. Voters approved it overwhelmingly which effectively allowed him to merge the safety and service director’s jobs into one position.