Wharton appoints interim directors to replace Robert Lipscomb - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Wharton appoints interim directors to replace Robert Lipscomb

(Source: WMC Action News 5) (Source: WMC Action News 5)

Memphis Mayor A C Wharton appointed two new people to the city's Housing and Development agencies.

These people will assume the roles former Housing and Community Development Director Robert Lipscomb held before he resigned from the position on Monday night.

Deputy Director Debbie Singleton will now serve as interim Director of Housing and Community Development.

Deputy Chief Administrative Officer Maura Black Sullivan will become the interim Executive Director of Memphis Housing Authority.

In addition to the role of Memphis Housing and Community Development Director, Lipscomb served as Memphis Housing Authority Director. He has since been suspended with pay from that role. 

Deputy Director Maura Black Sullivan will fill his vacancy as Memphis Housing Authority Director throughout the course of the investigation.

"This is a high performing Authority, the second oldest authority in the United States of America,” Sullivan said.

Sullivan is a native Memphian. She graduated from Central High School and Memphis Law School. She worked in juvenile court, worked with Congressman Harold Ford, Jr., was an assistant superintendent for Shelby County Schools and was the city’s Deputy Chief Administrator.

When asked how long she planned to be in the role, Sullivan did not know.

“I don't know yet, we're just going to have to see with the board, but I'm really anxious to continue working at the Housing Authority now and get through this,” Sullivan said. “We have residents who need housing.”

Sullivan said she has known Lipscomb all of her professional career and was saddened to hear about the accusations. She plans to begin immediately at MHA full time and keep its goals and vision intact.

“We have big grants in our future. We have one, a jobs plus grant, that we are going to be moving forward with, and we have a choice grant. I know it's going to be favorable and positive for Memphis.”

The board will meet again in two weeks to discuss Lipscomb’s employment status.

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