City of Charleston improves services and efficiency with organizational changes – marking the first update in almost 50 years

May 23, 2024

Mayor William Cogswell released the City of Charleston’s newly updated organizational structure aimed at enhancing efficiency and improving customer service for its residents. This initiative marks the first substantial update to the city’s organizational chart in nearly half a century, demonstrating the administration’s commitment to putting residents first and ensuring sound governance.

Previously, the city’s 26 departments and Offices of the Mayor operated independently. The updated structure consolidates these into four main sections: Facilities & Capital Projects; Community Services; Planning, Permitting & Engineering; and Public Works. This reorganization aims to streamline operations and cut through bureaucratic red tape.

The city welcomes back Tim Keane, who brings over two decades of urban planning expertise to his role, as the head of the Planning, Permitting, & Engineering Section. With a career spanning over 16 years with the city prior to 2015, Keane has since lent his expertise to guiding municipalities across North America in their city planning initiatives. This section will house Stormwater, Planning & Preservation, Housing & Community Development, as well as the Engineering, Permit Center, and Building Inspections divisions.

Dan Riccio, drawing from 37 years of experience with the City of Charleston, will lead the Community Services section. From patrol officer to SWAT team supervisor, Dan retired from the Charleston Police Department as a Lieutenant in 2010, subsequently becoming the Director of Livability. In his new role, Dan will continue prioritizing the needs of residents, while providing oversight and regulation to our city’s tourism industry. The Community Services Section will encompass the departments of Livability & Tourism and Recreation, as well as the Economic & Neighborhood Services division, Mayor’s Offices of Cultural Affairs, and Children, Youth, and Families.

Robert Somerville has been with the city since 2016 and will be elevated to head the city’s new Public Works section. Starting as a Signs and Marking Technician II, he pursued his passion for customer service and leadership, driven by his experience as a professional baseball player with the Baltimore Orioles minor league organization. Somerville’s dedication to excellence guides his approach to leading the Public Works section, which includes the Traffic & Transportation and Public Service departments.

Jason Kronsberg will lead the city’s Facilities & Capital Projects Section. Kronsberg has been with the city since 2010, initially as a Construction Project Manager. With a background as a licensed Landscape Architect and over a decade in private practice, he brings extensive experience in various aspects of design and development. Jason will guide the careful stewardship and enhancement of public parks and facilities, drawing on his deep-rooted connection to the city’s recreational programming and public realm.

“For the first time in nearly 50 years, our city’s organizational chart has been updated to make us more responsive for our residents,” said Mayor William Cogswell. “By breaking down silos and increasing communication across departments, we can increase the efficiency and effectiveness of our incredible staff. Here at the city, we aim to provide great service to our residents and this move helps us do just that.”

This updated organizational chart will be reflected on the city’s website in the coming months, making navigating city services easier for residents and business owners. This initiative is budget-neutral and was funded through surpluses and eliminated inefficiencies found in the city budget after staff analysis.