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Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway announced she is appointing Nan Fey to be the interim director of the Planning, Community & Economic Development. Former director Natalie Erdman recently retired, and her last day was April 26. 

Madison Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway is appointing former Plan Commission chair Nan Fey to serve as interim director of the Planning, Community & Economic Development department until the city finds a replacement for recently retired Natalie Erdman.

Fey will fill in for Erdman, who was appointed as director in July 2015 and retired after nearly four years in the role. Erdman’s last day in office was April 26.

Nan Fey (copy)

Nan Fey

Fey has served on numerous city committees, boards and commissions under three mayoral administrations. She served as the chair of the Plan Commission from 2005 to 2012 and is currently serving as the chair of the Madison Food Policy Council. However, Fey will cease serving on the committee when she starts the job May 20.

Rhodes-Conway said in a statement she is pleased Fey accepted the “challenge.”

“Nan’s committee experience provides her with a great background for this job,” Rhodes-Conway said in a statement. “She knows the people around the table, from city staff to interested residents and city partners.”

Fey is an attorney by training and became involved in city policy issues as a neighborhood advocate. She has been primarily interested in planning and development issues addressed by the Board of Public Works, Joint West Campus Area Committee, Inclusionary Zoning Advisory Committee and the Lamp House Block Plan.

Fey is also a previous recipient of the Jeffrey Clay Erlanger Civility in Government Award.

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The director’s role includes moving the city’s efforts in affordable housing, development and economic development forward. Additionally, the director leads the department’s management team.

As interim director, Fey will make $126,155 annually, according to the mayor's office. Erdman earned $157,482 annually as director.

The city will soon begin a nationwide search, required by city ordinance, to find a permanent replacement for the director’s role. 

Since taking office, Rhodes-Conway has hired chief of staff Mary Bottari and Leslie Orrantia, who is a deputy mayor overseeing aspects of economic development, public health and transportation.

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Abigail Becker joined The Capital Times in 2016, where she primarily covers city and county government. She previously worked for the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism and the Wisconsin State Journal.