Mayor Bowser’s Situational Briefing – Shake Up in Top Aides – COVID – Security

Mayor Bowser’s Situational Briefing – Shake Up in Top Aides – COVID – Security

By Larry Janezich

Posted January 28, 2021

Mayor Bowser announced personnel changes in the top levels of her administration. 

  • Kevin Donahue, interim City Administration, has been named City Administrator.
  • Roger Mitchell, interim Deputy Mayor for Safety and Justice and Chief Medical Examiner is leaving for an academic post at Howard University.
  • Christopher Geldhart, Director of DPW, has been named Deputy Mayor for Safety and Justice.
  • Christine Davis, General Counsel for the Department of Public Works, has been named Director of DPW.
  • Francisco Diaz, Chief Deputy Medical Examiner City, has been named Chief Medical Examiner.

Other takeaways from remarks by Mayor Bowser and by Dr. LaQuandra Nesbitt, DCDOH:

Bowser:  This week the Biden Administration committed to increasing DC’s vaccine allocation by 15% for the next three weeks.  The increase will be allocated according to the strategy currently in place. 

Bowser:  DC is now vaccinating:

  • Individuals who work in health care settings Members of the Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department
  • Residents of long-term and intermediate care facilities and residents of community residential facilities/group homes
  • DC residents who are 65 years old and older
  • Individuals experiencing homelessness
  • Members of the Metropolitan Police Department
  • Teachers and staff who are, or will be, working in person at a DCPS school or a DC public charter school
  • Department of Corrections employees
  • Continuity Government Operations personnel

Nesbitt: DC Department of Health remains opposed to creation of a waitlist because it makes it impossible to apply an equity model to insure people at highest risk get the vaccine. 

Nesbitt:  The perception that the most affluent neighborhoods are outpacing economic depressed neighborhoods regarding vaccinations does not take into account the distribution of residents over 65 who are found in greater numbers in affluent neighborhoods or the resistance to vaccination in some demographics.

Bowser:  The next group eligible for vaccinations is likely to be child care workers and a decision and announcement will be made soon.

Nesbitt: The rate of infection is dropping after a holiday surge.  Until we understand more about the virus variants and their increased rate of transmission, we are at risk for an accelerated rate of infection until we get to 10 cases per day or lower. 

Bowser:  Fencing around the White House and the US Capitol is temporary.  There are upcoming potentially volatile events requiring additional security.  We want the city and institutions to be safe but we don’t want fences or troops to be long term fixtures. 

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