Anne Arundel personnel officer Wade resigns; Owens wants to put her 'stamp' on office


As one of a number of staff changes in the new Anne Arundel County administration, County Executive Janet S. Owens accepted yesterday the resignation of E. Hilton Wade Jr., the county personnel officer.

Wade, 63, a career human resources administrator from Savage, was appointed to the position in May 1995 by Republican John G. Gary, whom Owens, a Democrat, defeated in November.

"I like Hilton, but this will give me the opportunity to put my stamp on an office that affects the lives of every county employee," Owens said.

Wade helped Gary and the County Council reform what many criticized as an overly generous county pension plan created in the 1980s and helped install a "pay for performance" merit system.

The personnel officer proved an embarrassment for Owens shortly after she took office when he refused to release information on bonuses given out by the Gary administration, claiming that bonuses do not fall under the Maryland Public Information Act's definition of pay.

The state attorney general's office ruled that Wade, who said he was following the advice of the county's law office, was wrong.

Owens said yesterday that she will name Thomas W. Mullenix as interim personnel officer.

Mullenix, who worked for 17 years in the county's office of budget and finance and has been in the personnel office for 22 months, said his appointment is temporary and that he is not "interested in the job on a permanent basis."

Pub Date: 1/23/99

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