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Franklin County Administrator Don L. Brown to Retire from County Service

Tuesday, July 15, 2014
Contact: Hanna M. Greer-Brown, Commissioners, 614/525-5848

Franklin County Administrator Don L. Brown (43220) has informed the Franklin County Board of Commissioners of his intention to resign on October 31, 2014 in order to preserve his eligibility for post-retirement health care benefits within the Ohio Public Employee Retirement System (OPERS).

“We’ve been so fortunate to have Don’s wealth of experience and depth of knowledge during such an incredible time of challenge and growth in Franklin County,” said Commission President Marilyn Brown.

In 2005, Brown was appointed as County Administrator following a long career as a certified public accountant and certified government financial manager working in both the public and private sectors.

Over the course of the past decade, Administrator Brown, under the leadership of the Board of Commissioners, improved the County’s finances and positioned the County to weather the economic downturn and fall of the housing market better than many other counties in Ohio and the country. As a result of this strong management, Franklin County has remained a leader among its government peers, adopting County Ethics, Environmental Sustainability and Financial Sustainability policies and maintaining the County’s double-Triple A bond ratings.

“As the longest serving commissioner, it was my pleasure to recruit Don to Franklin County when I was first elected in 2004,” Commissioner Brooks said. “Don’s crystal-clear fiscal advice has been a substantial reason why Franklin County weathered the Great Recession with a double AAA Bond Rating throughout, and remains as the only Ohio county with this high rating. As Don departs for his next chapter in life, we hope to recruit someone that, admittedly, will have very large shoes to fill. Luckily, Don is leaving our county in stellar shape, and with added resilience to whatever the future brings.”

During Brown’s tenure as Administrator, Franklin County has executed numerous public improvement projects totaling more than $200M and employing thousands in Central Ohio during their construction, including the 10,000-seat family-friendly Huntington Park, a new LEED-Gold certified Common Pleas Courthouse and LEED-Gold certified Dog Shelter and
Adoption Center, the renovation of the current Hall of Justice building, and a new Public Safety
Complex currently in the planning stages.

"Don Brown has forgotten more about local government than most people will learn in a
lifetime," said Commissioner John O’Grady. “His contributions to Franklin County will be sorely
missed but the talented team of professionals he’s cultivated will position the County to continue
to be a leader and innovator.”

Franklin County is now the fastest growing County in the state of Ohio and the 30th largest
County in the nation. The County’s growing population has meant an increase in the number of
residents utilizing County services. With Brown’s guidance, Franklin County structured a deal to
bring safe drinking water to hundreds of Township residents without requiring them to annex
into the City of Columbus, made annual investments totaling more than $300 million to support
our community’s youngest residents and has increased support for economic development and
job creation efforts including the creation of programs such as the Retail Incubation Supporting
Entrepreneurs (RISE), Workforce Innovation Training Grants (WIT-G), and strategic
partnerships with Columbus2020 and Experience Columbus to support Franklin County’s strong
local economy by attracting business to our region and increasing visitor spending which sustain
the delivery of County services supported by sales tax revenues.

In recent years, Franklin County has been a partner in attracting events like the EcoSummit, the
annual National Homeland Security Conference, the National Association of Counties (NACo)
Large Urban County Caucus (LUCC) conference and, in 2017, NACO’s annual meeting
contribute to strengthening the local economy and have grown our travel and tourism industry
from $5 billion in 2007 to $7.9 billion today which supports 63,000 jobs in our community.

“I am extremely grateful to the Commissioners for providing me the opportunity to lead their
team during the past 9 years,” said County Administrator Don Brown. “I have enjoyed this job
tremendously and am so proud of all that we’ve been able to accomplish as a community. I look
forward to remaining active and engaged in the Central Ohio community and am confident that
Franklin County is poised to be a leader for many years to come.”

The Franklin County Board of Commissioners anticipates engaging a professional search firm to
assist in an open, national search for a County Administrator.

Editor’s note: Download Administrator Brown’s bio here.

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