By Kevin Kelley
The director and assistant director at the Westlake Recreation Department are swapping jobs.
At its regular meeting April 3, Westlake City Council unanimously confirmed Mayor Dennis Clough’s appointment of Bob DeMinico as director of recreation. DeMinico had been the department’s assistant director since 2005.
Clough said Mike Rump, who had led the department since 2003, will serve as assistant director.
“This is my choice,” the mayor said.
Several council members West Life spoke with confirmed that Clough decided on the change and that it was not a matter of Rump not having the support of council.
Rump had been serving under the title of acting director since Clough’s eighth term as mayor began in January. All department directors’ terms end at the conclusion of a mayor’s term.
Clough explained that at the start of his new term, both Rump and DeMinico asked to be considered for the top recreation post. DeMinico had sought the director’s job four years ago but later withdrew that request, Clough added.
“I felt this time, I think for the betterment of the entire operation, it was time to give Bob DeMinico an opportunity,” the mayor said.
Clough told West Life the switch was not related to current operations at the department or a master plan study of the city’s recreational needs now underway.
Asked if the promotion of DeMinico was made to prevent him from taking a job elsewhere, Clough declined to answer directly but said, “He’s an attractive candidate anywhere.”
Clough said both DeMinico and Rump had the credentials but that DeMinico is the best choice to lead the department. DeMinico has more than 30 years of experience in recreation, including service as the director of Euclid’s parks and recreation department from 1994 to 2003, the mayor noted. Rump is familiar with Westlake community organizations and participated in Westlake sports, Clough said.
Clough said his goal was to keep Rump as assistant director because he has done a good job at the department.
“We all agreed they complemented each other,” Clough said of the two.
From 1984 to 1998, Rump served as Westlake’s Ward 6 councilman. He succeeded Clough, who represented the ward from 1982 to 1983. Rump previously served as assistant recreation director from 1998 to 2003. His most recent salary as recreation director was $96,000, according to Westlake human resources Director Jazmyn Stover. However, an ordinance that would retroactively set his salary at $98,600 while he was acting director this year is now before City Council. His current salary as assistant recreation director is $85,400. DeMinico’s most recent salary as assistant director was $82,997.40. His salary as recreation director is $94,000, effective April 7.