Baltimore CitiStat Director Resigns

Under Sidh, the agency tracked varied functions of city government, including blight, business climate and homelessness.

by Luke Broadwater, The Baltimore Sun / August 4, 2017
The former CitiStat director will serve as chief of staff under the president of Towson University. Shutterstock

(TNS) -- Sameer Sidh, the director of Baltimore's government accountability agency CitiStat, has resigned to join the administration at Towson University.

Sidh, who worked for two years under former Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, will now serve as chief of staff under Towson President Kim Schatzel.

“It’s been an absolute honor to serve the City I call home for the past two and a half years, and to lead a program like CitiStat that has won awards and served as a model for local governments across the country," he said in an email. “However, the opportunity to join a growing, emerging institution like Towson University was too good to pass up. I am excited by the vision that President Kim Schatzel has for Towson and look forward to contributing to that vision.”

Mayor Catherine Pugh said Wednesday that she plans to revamp the once-vaunted data-tracking agency created when Martin O’Malley was mayor.

“We’ve been looking at CitiStat,” she told a crowd gathered at the CityLab Baltimore conference this week. “We need to rebrand CitiStat. What was interesting to find out is cities around the nation come to Baltimore because there was a time when we used CitiStat in such a way that we were able to measure what we were doing day in and day out. We should not just be measuring the crime."

Sidh was hired after a period of turmoil in the agency. Rawlings-Blake removed the previous director, saying she was dissatisfied with the agency’s performance.

CitiStat was a source of pride for O’Malley. Other cities adopted the process, and O'Malley still points to the agency's creation as a signature accomplishment of his administration.

Under Sidh, the agency tracked varied functions of city government, including blight, business climate and homelessness.

©2017 The Baltimore Sun Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.