Keit to Head Redevelopment Agency

Deciding to stay in house. the City Council, acting in its capacity as the Board of Directors of the San Jose Redevelopment Agency, announced its decision to appoint Richard Keit to serve as Managing Director of the Agency.

He is currently the Redevelopment Agency’s Director of Business Development and has held various positions in local government, including manager of the housing division, neighborhood business district coordinator and director of neighborhood and industrial development. Keit holds Masters degrees in Public Administration and Urban Planning from the University of Southern California and a B.A. in Sociology from the State University of New York at New Paltz.

“Richard’s twenty-five years of service and leadership to the Redevelopment Agency will provide continuity to the Agency during this period of transition,” Mayor Chuck Reed said.

Keit takes over the lead role after Harry Mavrogenes made an announcement late last month that the agency would be going down to a staff of eight and he would be resigning as Executive Director. Mavrogenes has held that title since late 2004.

In his previous roles, Keit has had to manage retention, expansion and attraction efforts in the city’s redevelopment project areas, which includes industrial areas, downtown and neighborhood business districts. Most recently he coordinated the capital equipment reimbursement agreements for local companies such as Maxim Integrated Products, SunPower, C8 MedisSensors, Intermolecular and SolFocus.

The appointment will be formally considered by the Agency Board at its June 21 Board meeting and is expected to take effect on June 27. If accepted, Keit will oversee a staff of seven with efforts focused on blight elimination, job-creation, economic development and tax-increment growth.

Keit lives in historic New Almaden with his wife, Ru Weerakoon, a senior policy advisor for economic development and land use for Mayor Reed. The couple has one son.

11 Comments

  1. With seven or eight employees, why do we need to fill the RDA chief position?  A bigger question – will the Council then hire another individual to replace Keit in his current job?

    All seems like a waste of money from my perspective.  If we must continue the existence of the RDA (beyond current bonding indebtedness management), why not have the headcount report to another overpaid manager within SJ’s employee base?

    Oh, one more thing, I see that both Keit and his wife work for SJ, is his son on the City payroll as well?

    • Yes, the Keit/Weerakoon family will spend many years riding in the opulent ‘Luxury Car’ on the Government Pension Gravy Train.

  2. Mayor Budget Message.  Take from Employees 15% and raid their solvent pension fund that paid out $250 million but made $400 million this year alone in investments not including massive contributions from employees own pay. By the way the pension fund is being sabotaged by the amount of people the management and council are prematurely chasing into retirement, they are purposely overloading the system.  All under the guise of an unfunded liability they want to fund an absolute unnecessary amount in 5 years.  There’s Billions in Retirement funds just sitting there in this fiscal crisis untouchable by politicians by design because they will squander if given the chance.  We have a crisis, but it’s not a fiscal crisis, it’s a management and leadership crisis. City Manager over 30 years on City payroll between Los Gatos and San Jose, started as a Recreation aid, huge annual salary, huge pensions form San Jose and Los Gatos go enjoy it. Time to retire your over your head and not qualified for this job. Same for ER Director and his Charlie’s Angels.  All promoted way above credentials and skill level because they do what their told not what is right. And where did they dig up this auditor, awful reports stretching data telling coincidently what the Mayor wants to hear?  Mayor no charisma, no leadership, no plan except steel from employees. Cannot close baseball deal, cannot close Tesla deal, and cannot close UPS deal. Now wants to battle employees over defined benefits that have years of case law clearly exhibiting its illegal. Spend tax payer’s money on ballot measure with legal consequences.  His own legal staff advising him it’s illegal.  Ostracized by the Democrat party for pulling the fiscal crisis card when there is none ($4 billion in revenue, fiscal crisis?), while at the same time entire mid-west towns flattened and people dying from real tornados.  When handed the reins San Jose it was the safest City in America, now we have more murders in 1/2 the year than we had all last year.  “Outsource specialist” with no credentials and no expertise in targeted programs.  Money squandered in loser programs like the Convention Center.  Lets face it San Jose is a great place to live and work, maybe the best, but clearly not a vacation and convention destination, please?  Lets be transparent and discuss in close session how we are going to try and rob the pension fund, How many more reasons do you need? Recall Reed, so we can be proud to live in San Jose again.  Gray Davis thought he was untouchable, its time for a ballot measure, it’s called a recall, time to move the stale politicians and their Busch league managers out.

  3. If Mayor Reed is correct in his thinking; with respect to his decisions that funding high priced personnel to solve economic problems will indeed improve the well being of San Jose, the structure of the RDA and all six (6) of his Senior Policy Advisors, the vaulted Office of Economic Development would be producing viable and sustainable economic results.

    Instead, San Jose’s current economic state and into the foreseeable future is likened to the swirling vortex often observed in a toilet bowl.

    However, one poignant issue in the promotion of the husband of one of his Honor’s Senior Policy Advisors
    is clear; there isn’t a conflict of interest that his Honor doesn’t like.

    David S. Wall