Mayor Brandon Scott’s chief of staff is leaving the administration later this summer for a new position, the latest in a series of departures from the mayor’s executive team during his second year in office.
Michael Huber, the mayor’s top assistant since he took office in December 2020, will take a new job as the director of Maryland state government affairs for Johns Hopkins University and Johns Hopkins Medicine. His replacement has not yet been selected.
Huber said he has been in the mayor’s office with Scott “since day one.” He joined Scott’s team in May 2019 as chief of staff when Scott was City Council President and continued in that role when Scott was elected mayor. Huber departs after two years in the position.
“As you can imagine [the role] is one that is nearly 24/7, very demanding and when I was presented with an opportunity to go to Hopkins, and work with the team over there and work at an institution that is so committed to the success of Baltimore and the success of this administration, I was really intrigued,” Huber said. “It became clear that a lot of the good work that we’ve been doing here in City Hall, I’m going to be able to continue in one capacity or another.”
Huber first started in city government in January 2015 and worked for then-City Council President Bernard “Jack” Young as his director of legislative affairs and as director of business and economic development. Before that, Huber worked on Anthony Brown’s unsuccessful gubernatorial campaign in 2014.
Huber forged a strong relationship with Scott while working in Young’s office by working on legislative issues with Scott when he was on the council’s public safety committee.
One of the highlights of Huber’s tenure in city government has been the opportunity to serve both Baltimore residents and “a new, young mayor trying to do things differently” by expanding opportunities into more neighborhoods to reach more city residents. Among the challenges of the job, Huber said, has been managing simultaneous crises and losing hundreds of residents to gun violence, including three Safe Streets workers and a city police officer. Three firefighters also died earlier this year in a building collapse.
“We’re working to identify a permanent successor,” said Huber, adding that “whoever that person is going to be, they’re going to need to be somebody who’s incredibly committed to the city and the people in the city. It just requires too much of you to not bring that kind of passion into the office every day.”
Scott’s executive team has transitioned in the last year with the departure of several top officials, some holdovers from a previous administration. Communications director Cal Harris left in February for a position in St. Louis. Deputy Mayor for Public Safety Sunny Schnitzer also left that month, as did Daniel Ramos, the city’s deputy city administrator. Ramos’ replacement, Chichi Nyagah-Nash, left in June after five months in the position.
“Michael has been a critical member of my staff both in the legislative branch and now the executive branch, helping us to implement a solid foundation for this Administration during the uncertainties of a pandemic,” Scott said in a statement. “His many contributions, counsel and commitment to the City of Baltimore will be missed, but I am confident that we have a strong leadership team that will keep things moving forward for the City.”