City of Cleveland names interim city manager

Cleveland City Manager Bobby Pennington

Bobby Pennington is the interim city manager for the City of Cleveland, effective Wednesday, Sept. 16. He is stepping into the role created by the departure of retiring City Manager Kelly McDonald.

The decision to appoint Pennington as the interim city manager was made by the Cleveland City Council at the Sept. 15 meeting following a closed executive session. Council voted unanimously in favor of his appointment.

“Bobby, I hope you are happy. We are happy. I’m happy,” said Mayor Richard Boyett.

Pennington replied, “I hope you guys are happy. We are going to make you happy.”

For the last five years, Pennington has worked as the City of Cleveland’s finance director and assistant city manager. Since entering the field of city management after college, Pennington has worked for the cities of Deer Park, Jersey Village and Palestine.

For taking on the extra tasks of city manager, Pennington will be compensated an additional $500 per week until such time a new city manager is appointed by Council. He also will receive a car allowance equal to the amount currently being given to outgoing City Manager Kelly McDonald. The exact amount of that car allowance was not reported at the meeting.

A retirement party for McDonald will be held on Wednesday, from 4 to 7 p.m., at the Cleveland Civic Center. The event is open to all well-wishers who want to attend. Everyone will be required to wear a mask to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

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Before creating Bluebonnet News in 2018, Vanesa Brashier was a community editor for the Houston Chronicle/Houston Community Newspapers. During part of her 12 years at the newspapers, she was assigned as the digital editor and managing editor for the Humble Observer, Kingwood Observer, East Montgomery County Observer and the Lake Houston Observer, and the editor of the Dayton News, Cleveland Advocate and Eastex Advocate. Over the years, she has earned more than two dozen writing awards, including Journalist of the Year.


  1. Happy Retirement Kelly !!!!!
    Thank you for all of your years of service to the City of Cleveland.
    You will be greatly missed!!!

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