The city of Spokane’s human resources director on Monday became the latest top official to resign.
Amber Richards did not indicate why she was leaving when she submitted her resignation to Mayor Nadine Woodward, according to Woodward. Richards’ last day will be July 9.
Richards is the second division head to resign this month.
Cupid Alexander, the city’s director of Neighborhoods, Housing and Human Services, left abruptly. He released a bundle of emails that documented his tense relationship with City Administrator Johnnie Perkins.
Alexander questioned whether he was treated differently because he is Black; the city has hired an outside investigator to look into the claims.
Prior to Alexander’s departure, two key figures in the city’s Community, Housing and Human Services department left. Tija Danzig, a senior manager, and Timothy Sigler, the department’s director, have both resigned this year.
Public Works Director Scott Simmons left this year to take a job as chief executive officer for Spokane County and has since been replaced by Marlene Feist.
Richards did not return a request for comment on Tuesday. She was hired by the city in 2018 and appointed as human resources director in July 2020.
Woodward praised Richards in an interview with The Spokesman-Review, saying she had worked to improve diversity in the city workforce and encouraged employee development.
“I’m sad to see her go,” Woodward said.
Woodward expressed concern that city employees were burning out after a long year of responding to the pandemic. Many of those in her immediate circle were working 80 hours a week or more, she added.
“People are tired,” Woodward said. “We really need to right the ship and get people healthy.”
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