Rachel Blakeman, spokeswoman for Mayor Tom Henry, is leaving the office for a planned career switch into law.
Blakeman, who has served as one of the city's public-information officers since a month after the mayor took office in January 2008, said she plans to begin classes toward a law degree at IUPUI on Aug. 19.
Blakeman will officially resign from her role Aug. 17.
“I've been thinking about going to law school since I was in fourth grade,” Blakeman said. “This is hardly a reaction to anything, but something that I have thought about for a long time.”
Blakeman is a 1999 Ball State University graduate. She handled marketing with Lancia Homes after working as a bureau reporter for The Journal Gazette. Blakeman said she hopes to practice civil law and wants to return to Fort Wayne following graduation.
Blakeman said she was honored to work with Henry, who she feels is making major strides for the city.
“He continues to take the city in the right direction,” Blakeman said. “We're starting to see some outcomes of some of the projects that he's been working on. Obviously we're seeing what I would consider positive things for downtown revitalization, some of the efforts in some of the neighborhoods, some of the more high-profile projects such as co-location and merging city and county 911. These are big projects that will pay off years to come.
“I've appreciated the opportunity to work for Mayor Henry. If only I could do both, but unfortunately that isn't an option.”
Henry did not return a request for comment.