Halifax has hired a new executive director of planning and development, bringing a former employee back from Saint John, N.B.

Jacqueline Hamilton starts on Aug. 14. She takes over the job from Kelly Denty, who retired last month after working for HRM since amalgamation in 1996.

Hamilton was Commissioner of Growth and Community Development in Saint John, and worked in that city for 14 years. Before that, according to LinkedIn, Hamilton worked as a planner and then manager at HRM from 1995 to 2009. Hamilton has a master’s degree in planning from Dalhousie and completed NSCAD’s Environmental Planning and Design program.

“Jacqueline is an accomplished urban planner with a career spanning 30 years in the municipal sector,” chief administrative officer Cathie O’Toole wrote in an email to staff last week.

“In fact, she’s previously held senior positions right here at the municipality, where she led transformational urban planning and downtown projects, launching urban design and streetscape programs that continue to shape Halifax’s urban core.”

O’Toole said HRM “is currently undergoing some of the most transformative development in our region’s history.”

“With her experience, leadership skills and track record of delivering on innovative planning projects, I am confident that Jacqueline will thrive in her new role,” O’Toole wrote.

Paul MacKinnon, chief executive officer at the Downtown Halifax Business Association, praised the hire on Twitter.

“I could not be more pleased. I had the opportunity to work with her for many years. She not only gets downtowns/main streets, but the fundamentals of suburban and rural development as well,” MacKinnon wrote.

Zane Woodford is the Halifax Examiner’s municipal reporter. He covers Halifax City Hall and contributes to our ongoing PRICED OUT housing series. Twitter @zwoodford

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  1. Great to see Jacqueline is coming back to HRM. She is an exceptional planner and manager.