Andrew H. Sargent has been hired by the City of Hagerstown as the new downtown manager, a city official said Wednesday.
Jill Estavillo, the city’s economic development manager, said Sargent was hired to replace Christy Blake, who had worked as the city’s downtown business retention and recruitment before leaving her post “recently.”
The job title was streamlined after Blake’s departure, but the work responsibilities — leading downtown business recruitment and retention as well as monitoring incentive programs — are essentially the same, Estavillo said.
Sargent, who comes from a real estate background, was selected from a field of about 90 applicants, and 17 were brought in for interviews, Estavillo said.
With experience working with the Hagerstown-Washington County Chamber of Commerce and Washington County Economic Development Commission, Sargent’s relevant range of skills and history of building relationships within the business community made him attractive for the position, Estavillo said.
“The skillset of having a broad real estate and economic development background is going to be an asset to our downtown,” she said.
Previously employed by Trust Development & Management LLC in Hagerstown, Sargent’s first day on the job was Wednesday.
He will oversee the continuation and refinement of the city’s economic development programs, such as Partners in Economic Progress and incentives for women- and minority-owned businesses, Estavillo said.
— C.J. Lovelace