City Lights June

DeSoto City Lights June, 2019 A Publication of the City of DeSoto Community Relations Department DESOTO WELCOMES M. RENÉE JOHNSON AS INTERIM CITY MANAGER Longtime DeSoto Parks Chief Will Fill‐In Following Tarron Richardson’s Departure By Matt Smith, Communications Manager Mayor CurƟstene S. McCowan and the DeSoto City Council have selected M. Reneé Johnson to serve as the City of DeSoto’s Interim City Manager. Johnson has been serving as the City of DeSoto’s Managing Director of Parks & RecreaƟon and will fill the vacancy being created by the departure of long Ɵme City Manager Dr. Tarron J. Richardson, who is moving to CharloƩesville, Virginia, to be their next City Manager. “Anyone who knows Reneé is aware that she is a dynamic and creaƟve person who knows how to get things done in the most efficient and impressive way,” noted Mayor McCowan. “Her appointment as Interim City Manager is great news for the people of DeSoto, and Reneé and the enƟre DeSoto team are commiƩed to managing City business with a spirit of excellence.”

M. Reneé Johnson has spent nearly three decades leading parks and recreaƟonal operaƟons in four different ciƟes including Dallas. Johnson came to DeSoto in 2007 and during her tenure here has managed and leveraged her resources efficiently to allow for the expansion of cultural events, educaƟonal enrichment programs, community partnerships, targeted teen recreaƟon, increased volunteerism, and placing a major emphasis on programs and acƟviƟes for seniors. In 2016, Johnson led DeSoto’s Parks and RecreaƟon Department to the coveted accreditaƟon recogniƟon for excellence from the Commission for AccreditaƟon of Park and RecreaƟon Agencies (CAPRA).

“I’ve served as a director in DeSoto City Government since 2007, and in that Ɵme have built some very solid relaƟonships with all of our main stakeholders and, of course, DeSoto’s senior management team,” noted incoming Interim‐ City Manager Reneé Johnson. “We’ve accomplished a tremendous amount by working as a team on DeSoto’s behalf and we look forward to conƟnuing to work as a team to make a difference in our great city, block by block and day by day!” Johnson replaces Dr. Tarron Richardson, who served as DeSoto’s City Manager since 2011. He is credited with implemenƟng a major financial overhaul of City Government while strengthening DeSoto’s municipal work force and taking the lead on numerous successful economic development projects.

“DeSoto has been most fortunate to have Dr. Richardson as our City Manager for all these years and we wish him our best in his new role as the City Manager of CharloƩesville.” Mayor McCowan added “While he has set the bar high for his replacement, we are confident that as Interim City Manager, Reneé Johnson will conƟnue to move our city forward and maintain the growth and posiƟve momentum that DeSoto residents and visitors have come to expect.”

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