The executive director of Pensacola’s Downtown Improvement Board has resigned effective September 30, according to a release from the agency.

Ron Butlin, the DIB’s executive director since 2013, said that family health issues prompted his decision to leave. “This was a difficult decision,” Butlin said Thursday, “but family health issues dictated this was the right time to transition. I’m proud of the progress we’ve made over the last three years and look forward to seeing what the future holds.”

The DIB is a city agency and special taxing district which manages a 40-block district in downtown Pensacola. Butlin joined the agency after previously serving as the executive director for the Downtown Partnership in Colorado Springs, Colo.

“We hate to see Ron go,” DIB Chairman John Peacock said Thursday, “but we have a lot of initiatives on the horizon and are excited to see what sort of new ideas these candidates bring to the table.”

Butlin’s departure has prompted the DIB to launch a search for a new executive, whom officials say they hope to have in place before the holiday shopping season. A search committee, chaired by DIB board member Jim Homyak, has been established to narrow the applicant pool down to a list of finalists which will be presented to the full board in October.

DIB assistant director Lissa Dees will helm the organization until the position is filled.

Peacock said the eventual director would have their hands full, with a number of new initiatives on the horizon. “They will have to be someone of strong vision,” Peacock said. “They’ll also need to have the will to push that vision forward and the ability to work collaboratively with other governmental entities. Most importantly, though, we want someone who sees the potential in this community and is passionate about moving it forward.”


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