The City of Ashland Accepts Resignation of Administrative Services/Finance Director, Mark Welch
After two years with the City, Mark Welch has been recruited by OpenGov to become a Solutions Engineer. In his new position, he will work directly with local government to improve efficiency and access to public financial information. This move is a departure from his career in public sector finance, but one that is a natural fit for him. Since starting work for the City in May 2017, Mark has been a strong advocate for utilizing technology to improve service delivery and provide transparency.
Welch arrived in Ashland in the middle of a challenging budget process already underway. Mark made it his mission to make financial details more accessible. Mark introduced the City to OpenGov software, a web-based portal that provides citizens direct access to real-time financial details of the City. Not only have members of the City Council and Budget Committee had unprecedented access to the City’s financials, citizens and staff also have information at their fingertips.
Mark and his family chose Ashland from a short-list of places they wanted to live and raise their young family. The new post with OpenGov will allow his family to remain in Ashland while he is able to work remotely to help other local governments make the shift to a more open government. According to Welch, “Despite the difficult budget challenges, my time with the City overall has been a great experience; it was a difficult decision to leave.”
While it is hard to lose a talented member of the Executive team, the City Council, staff and City Administrator are supportive of this professional move for Mark. Councilor Dennis Slattery shared his appreciation for Mark’s work "I am disappointed that I will not get to continue to work with Mark, but excited for him that he has this wonderful opportunity that came from his great work with us over the past two years. While we face great financial challenges as we go forward, Mark has helped build and establish a much better process to address those challenges.” According to City Administrator, Kelly Madding, the City is not in a rush to replace Welch. “We have extremely competent staff in Finance, so the City is in great shape. We can take our time to determine our needs and find another great fit for the Community, and one who shares Mark’s desire for fiscal stability and transparency.” Mark is committed to helping the City through the current budget process and will finish sometime in May.