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September 23, 2020, 12:39:29 pm
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Author Topic: Downtown Coordinating Council - New Director with Urban Planning experience  (Read 1189 times)
Civic Leader
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« on: August 13, 2018, 11:11:47 am »


In a few days, Brian Kurtz and his wife, Becky, will pack up their small, young family and leave Pittsburgh for Tulsa.

It’s a big move for Kurtz, who was raised in the Steel City. But it’s a big job he’s coming to town to do — serve as executive director of the Downtown Coordinating Council. He will begin work Aug. 20, succeeding Tom Baker.

“The things that really matter to me and my wife, Becky, are that any place that we’re looking be a family-friendly place and really have that kind of vision for a community that we have here in Pittsburgh that we’re really interested in continuing elsewhere,” Kurtz said Tuesday. “And we have absolutely found that in Tulsa.”

The Downtown Coordinating Council is an advisory board made up of downtown property owners, government officials and business owners who provide support and advice for the planning, maintenance and marketing of downtown Tulsa.

Kurtz, 32, was selected from a field of 97 people nationwide contacted by HRS Inc., a firm specializing in recruiting economic and downtown development professionals. Most recently he worked as director of economic development for the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership. The partnership is a nonprofit business improvement district that works with the public and private sectors to improve downtown Pittsburgh.

Kurtz said part of the appeal of the DCC job is the vision for the city presented to him by Mayor G.T. Bynum and other city leaders as well as the large investments made downtown over the last decade.

“The opportunity to come here and lead an organization like the DCC in to what downtown Tulsa should be going forward is really exciting for me,” Kurtz said.

Bynum said Kurtz’s hiring provides the city with “a combination of local passion and national expertise necessary to make downtown Tulsa the best it can be.”

Kurtz will be paid $110,00 annually, and ultimately will report to the mayor. Applicants for the job were reviewed and recommended to the mayor by a hiring committee made up of representatives of the DCC, the City Council, the Tulsa Regional Chamber and other organizations affiliated with downtown development.

Libby Billings, a downtown business owner and the DCC chairwoman, said she was thrilled to have Kurtz in town.

“His data-driven, yet innovative development style and his hands-on experience in downtown Pittsburgh are going to be valuable assets to the future of downtown Tulsa,” Billings said.
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