After over 6 years of service, the DDA and Executive Director Jonathan Greene are parting ways, though Greene is not actually leaving Jackson. In 2013, the City of Jackson approached the Downtown Development Authority (DDA) about sharing staff resources. Greene became the Economic Development Director for the City of Jackson while also maintaining Executive Director duties. In 2014, Greene was promoted to Assistant City Manager and continued his previous responsibilities as Economic Development Director and Executive Director of the DDA.
Arrangements to share staff are not new to the DDA and City of Jackson. Several times since the DDA’s inception in 1979, the Executive Director of the DDA has also been a City of Jackson employee with other responsibilities. All parties were happy to once again work together and maximize resources. From Greene’s perspective, the opportunity to advance his career and still serve the DDA was an opportunity he could not resist.
“I think it’s natural to want to advance and progress. In 2013, when the arrangement started, I felt it was a great opportunity to grow while still being part of downtown. The relationship between the DDA and the City of Jackson is great. We’ve really needed to be on the same page during the Dig Downtown Jackson project,” said Greene. In 2014, Greene was promoted again. This time, the role of Assistant City Manager was added to his already full plate. “Working in local government management has been a goal of mine since college. I couldn’t say no to the chance to serve Jackson as Assistant City Manager” said Greene.
Just as in 2013, the DDA Board was quick to support the arrangement. “Jonathan has been the Director of the DDA since 2009. He helped stabilize the organization, grow events, and the downtown. We are tremendously proud of Jonathan and have been happy to support him in his career. He and the DDA have grown together,” said DDA Chairman Bart Hawley.
In 2015, Greene and the DDA Board began strategizing a plan for the future. Nathan Mack, the current DDA Assistant took on extra responsibilities and impressed the DDA Board. Mack has been able to grow into the Executive Director role naturally as Greene prepared to exit the organization. The mission of the DDA is to promote a vibrant and diverse center of cultural, business, residential and recreational activities; Through a cooperative process, create and execute development plans that encourage economic growth; Strengthen Jackson’s downtown and, in turn, enhance the entire Jackson community.
For Greene, the end of his role at the DDA has been bittersweet. “I worked really hard to put myself in this position but it’s time to move on. The DDA has been great to me. I owe them a lot and I think everyone agrees they need staff solely dedicated to advancing the DDA and its mission.”