By Carol McCracken (Post # 2,307)
Jon Jennings is a candidate for the position of city manager in Portland. Since March of 2013 he has served as assistant city manager for South Portland where his responsibilities have included economic development duties. The confirmation came this morning from South Portland city manager Jim Gailey.
The position became available because City Manager Mark Rees resigned in August of last year. It is widely believed that he was forced out of the job by a city council not happy with his performance. Rees was hired in 2011 to replace Joe Gray who had been city manager for years and retired from the position. Currently, MIchael Saushuck is acting city manager. The position is expected to be filled in July with an announcement coming in several weeks according to Council David Brenerman. A contract has been offered to the candidate of choice and terms of it are being worked out.
Jennings most recent (personal) accomplishment, among his many, was to compete in the Boston Marathon and complete it. Jennings who used to be a runner had not competed since hip surgery years ago. Five years ago, when the financing for the annual Fireworks Display on the Eastern Promenade was cut from the city’s budget,by Joe Gray Jennings stepped in and organized a group of businesses to finance the annual “Stars & Stripes Spectacular” to replace the cut tradition.
Prior to his employment with the City of South Portland, he was president and co-owner of the Maine Red Claws. He was a partner in the Thompson’s Point Development Co., which is an ongoing project in an undeveloped area along the Fore River.
Previously Jennings ran Senator John Kerry’s political campaigns In Massachusetts. He was an acting assistant US attorney general and an advisor in the White House under former President Bill Clincon.