As St. Mary’s County Commissioners President Jack Russell [D] explained it, a nationwide search for a new director of Land Use and Growth Management (LUGM) determined the county already had its best choice on the job. During their Tuesday, Jan. 3 meeting the commissioners unanimously approved an employment contract for Phil Shire as the new LUGM director. The recommendation for Shire’s appointment was made by County Administrator John Savich.

Russell commended Shire “on a job well done” as acting director of the department.

In a county government press release, Russell stated the board conducted “an exhaustive search and two rounds of interviews” after the LUGM director’s post was vacated earlier this year. “It became quite apparent that Phil was the best qualified person to permanently fill the position.”

Shire, who has previously served in numerous positions for St. Mary’s County Government, stated he was “honored by the confidence others have shown in my abilities.”

Among the posts Shire has held are two stints as LUGM’s acting director, caretaker of the St. Clement’s Island Museum and zoning inspector.

Shire’s appointment to the LUGM director’s post takes effect immediately.

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