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Posted on Wed. Nov. 07, 2012 - 12:47 am EDT

Brown seeks longer term at DID helm

FORT WAYNE — Five months after losing its president, the Downtown Improvement District is looking for a replacement.

Bill Brown was named interim president June 7 after the departure of Rich Davis.

Brown, who sought the job in 2005, said at the time he did not intend to just be there for the interim, and DID officials announced he is a candidate for the position. He will follow the same application process as other candidates.

“It was important to members of the board of directors that we not rush into anything, but instead establish a process for finding the next president of the organization,” said Zach Benedict, chairman of the DID Search Committee.

The Downtown Improvement District promotes downtown through marketing and programs.

The job description and application process for the president’s position can be found on the DID website at, which says its president should be a strategic thinker with operational and planning experience, who has the ability to build the teams needed to successfully implement a daunting list of projects from the DID’s key program areas.

“We are excited about the next phase of the Downtown Improvement District and look forward to working with the next president to achieve our vision for downtown Fort Wayne,” Benedict said.

The DID was criticized by City Council members in March, when they said the organization was slipping and that many business owners had no idea who the president was. Council President Tom Smith, R-1st, said at the time the organization’s website wasn’t complete and it was difficult to find when the district’s board meets.

The next week, when voting on whether to pay for the downtown group’s $150,000 contract for 2012, members warned there would be increased scrutiny in the future.

The group faces a vote in 2015 on whether it will continue.

That criticism ended with the departure of Davis.

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