Snow Hill, Maryland – (July 30, 2021): Worcester County Commissioners named Jennifer Keener as the new director of Development Review and Permitting (DRP). Keener joined DRP in 2006 and served as a DRP specialist until being promoted to zoning administrator in 2009 and deputy director in 2020.
“Growth isn’t a one and done effort, it is a process, and Keener is well-suited to lead her team, as they provide a range of services to assist the public with their planning needs,” Commission President Joe Mitrecic said. “As an expert planner, she brings the education, experience, and professional leadership skills necessary to lead her team in providing the planning support necessary to meet the challenges that come with growth throughout our diverse communities.”
Keener, a member of the American Planning Association and a certified planner (AICP), brings 16 years of planning and site plan review experience to this position. In her former roles, Keener oversaw the Technical Review Committee, Planning Commission, and Board of Zoning Appeals. She approved commercial site plans, reviewed and issued commercial and residential permits and conducted commercial zoning and nuisance inspections. She also develops the annual DRP budget and drafts local legislation in response to changes in state and local planning and zoning laws. Most recently she drafted Bill 21-3 Public Safety – Animal Control and Bill 21-4 Zoning – Commercial Kennel, which strengthened the animal protections in commercial kennel operations.
“I want to thank the commissioners for the opportunity to step into this leadership role,” Keener said. “And, I look forward to the collaborations that will be a part of our future planning efforts, our promotion of positive growth, and our protection of the natural beauty that Worcester County has to offer.”
She earned a Bachelor of Science in geography and environmental studies, with a minor in sociology and geology, from Gustavus Adolphus College in 2005. In 2008, she earned a Master of Science in environmental management from the University of Maryland University College, and in 2018 she earned AICP certification. Keener took over for former DRP Director Ed Tudor, who retired in July after 28 years of distinguished service to Worcester County.
“I’ve worked with Jennifer for 15 years and am pleased to see her assume this position,” Tudor said. “There is no one more qualified or prepared to take on the duties of this position.”
For additional information, contact Public Information Officer Kim Moses at (410) 632-1194.