Mayor's policy director leaves City Hall

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake's policy director said Friday he is resigning from his post at City Hall to take a job in the private sector. 

Ryan O'Doherty has served as Rawlings-Blake's chief spokesman for five years, since her time as City Council president.

O'Doherty, 35, has accepted a job as the director of external affairs and strategic communications at Mercy Health Services. His last day at City Hall will be July 30.

O'Doherty was a key adviser to Rawlings-Blake and helped craft the administration's agenda, including the goal of growing Baltimore by 10,000 families, an increase in the bottle tax to help fund school construction and cuts to the property tax.

A fierce defender of the mayor's policies, O'Doherty sometimes clashed with members of the news media and elected officials.

"In politics you have no permanent friends and no permanent enemies," said City Council President Bernard C. "Jack" Young, who has sparred with O'Doherty in the past. "We didn't see eye to eye on some things. The administration didn't like it that I spoke out about some issues, but he was just doing his job. I wish him the best." 

In a statement, Rawlings-Blake said O'Doherty has been a "diligent public servant."

“He’s a very talented, hardworking individual," said Deputy Mayor Robert Maloney. "The entire time I worked with him, he never lost focus of supporting the mayor’s efforts and doing everything he could to make the people around him better.”

In the interim, Travis Tazelaar, Rawlings-Blake's campaign director, will handle press inquires.

"To me, Ryan was always helpful and always forthcoming with information," said City Council member Brandon Scott.

O'Doherty's annual salary was $107,000.


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