Matier & Ross: Mayor Ed Lee pushed Nat Ford out
Photo by Brian Kusler
[Lee] wanted someone with a “150 percent commitment” to running Muni – and that Ford, with his constant job hunting, wasn’t cutting it.
Matier and Ross also report that Department of Public Works Director Ed Reiskin maybe a likely replacement, though it’s uncertain whether Reiskin will actually be taking Ford’s place.
Read the rest of the story at SFGate.
One more reason to love Ed Lee. I appreciate his not wanting the Mayoral job, but I sure wish he’d run. He seems to be all about making the City run, without all the flash of Gavin Newsome or Willie Brown. I love that we are not constantly reading about his haircut or his hats or how he dresses. Run Ed Run!
Oh how I love the smell of astroturf (that bogus ‘run ed run crap’ is getting plastered all over D4) in the morning.
Ed Lee firing Nat Ford only to replace him with some guy that Ed already hired is in the same vein as every other cronyastic action that Newsom or Brown has ever done. Considering that Brown and Pak are pulling Ed Lee’s strings, it really is change you can believe in. None.
As Tom Radulovich put it:
“Is Nat the fall guy for an administration that never really supported what the MTA was doing? Yeah. It’s unrealistic to expect much more of Nat’s successor until the political calculus changes.”
Ed Lee just cost us $400,000 unnecessarily, and has left the MTA without even the facade of leadership that Ford provided as they head towards a number of critical moments. Great job, Ed
I think Nat Ford was more than just the fall guy. It’s certainly not fair to lay all the blame for Muni’s woes on Ford, and the political administration certainly didn’t help, but Ford’s utter lack of leadership and common-sense are a big part of Muni’s dysfunction under his leadership. Ford has always maintained an incredibly combative and defensive attitude. His approach to problems has typically involved shouting and blaming others, rather than collaboratively developing solutions. He’s leaving the agency in far worse shape than when he arrived, with worse performance, spiraling costs, morale at new lows, and saddled with massive operating expenses for poorly planned capital projects that greatly increase costs while providing little to no improvements in service or revenue. Spending substantial amounts of time off looking for a better job didn’t exactly gain him respect as a leader, nor did his failure to pay his taxes and his trips and parties on the Atlanta taxpayer’s dime.
It’s telling that Ford was considered such an effective urban transit agency head that he was being seriously considered to run a major airport authority despite having absolutely no aviation experience. Perhaps that’s anyone who actually runs buses and trains knows he can’t handle that job.
Ford didn’t have the support he needed from the mayor’s office or anywhere else for that matter, but he’s no scapegoat and was a net negative compared to having no leadership whatsoever.