Derby Public Works Director Anthony DeFala will not hold the position under new Mayor Rich Dziekan’s administration, the mayor’s chief of staff confirmed.
DeFala was told of the decision Wednesday. His last day on the job is Dec. 31.
His replacement has not been officially named yet, said Andrew Baklik, Dziekan’s chief of staff, but an announcement could be coming shortly.
The new director will start work Jan. 1.
Changing the public works leader with incoming administrations is something of a tradition in Derby politics.
DeFala was elected to the Board of Aldermen in 2013 as a Democrat with Mayor Anita Dugatto. He resigned shortly after taking office to become public works director, replacing Ron Culmo, who held the job during Mayor Anthony Staffieri’s time in office.
DeFala and his employees were often praised at Derby Aldermen meetings for their efforts to beautify Derby.
Under DeFala’s leadership, public works installed a pedestrian bridge along with a number of other improvements to make Witek Park in east Derby more appealing; they took care of drainage and vehicular sight line problems on Derby Avenue; they made extensive improvements to the picnic grove and basketball courts off Nutmeg Avenue; they extended sidewalks up Chatfield Street to connect athletic fields with the high school/middle school campus, and they worked at a number of properties as part of the city’s “clean and lien” efforts.
“Mayor Dziekan thanked Mr. DeFala for his service and is going in a different direction with that department,” Baklik said in an email.
DeFala has offered to help with the transition to a new public works director, according to Baklik.
DeFala was a contractor and a police officer before becoming Derby’s public works director.
The Board of Aldermen is scheduled to meet 6 p.m. Thursday, but it is unclear whether the position or new appointment will be discussed.