Brookfield’s community and economic development director, Nicholas Greifer, has resigned and no longer works for the village.
Village Manager Timothy Wiberg confirmed Monday that Greifer had submitted his letter of resignation on June 28. That came three days after Wiberg had placed Greifer on paid administrative leave.
Greifer attended the village board’s meeting on June 24, giving a report on the progress of amending the maps for the Eight Corners Tax Increment Financing (TIF) District and the proposed Grand Boulevard TIF.
The circumstances surrounding Greifer’s departure remain unclear. Wiberg declined to comment further on the move Monday. Reached on his cellphone last week, Greifer declined to talk about the matter and directed inquiries to Wiberg.
It remains to be seen whether Greifer and the village will negotiate a separation agreement, which is common when municipal employees are forced out of their positions.
The last employee to go on administrative leave prior to departing was Theresa Coady, whose job was eliminated this past spring to make way for Wiberg to hire an assistant village manager.
In her separation agreement with the village, Coady received $95,000, part of which went to pay attorneys’ fees. Coady’s situation was a bit different from Greifer’s, however, in that she also filed complaints with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunities Commission and Illinois Department of Human Rights as a result of the village’s action,
As part of the agreement with Coady, the village settled the EEOC case by awarding her about $38,000 in compensatory damages in addition to a $25,000 “settlement check.” The village also cut a $31,666 check to pay Coady’s legal fees.
In Greifer’s absence, Wiberg said he has taken the reins of the Department of Community and Economic Development, which oversees everything from building permit applications and inspections to working with real estate developers looking to pitch commercial and residential developments.
“There will be further information coming,” Wiberg said.
The 54-year-old Greifer was hired as community and economic development director in March 2015 by then-Village Manager Keith Sbiral, who was in the midst of reshaping the Department of Building and Planning into a unit that more actively took a role in economic development.
Soft-spoken and deliberate, Greifer didn’t come from a traditional building department background, but he did have experience working with the village of Brookfield. From 2005 until he was hired, Greifer was vice president of Kane McKenna and Associates, a consulting firm that had been hired to help create the Ogden Avenue and Congress Park TIF districts.
A graduate of the University of Michigan with a master’s degree in public policy, Greifer’s job prior to working at Kane McKenna was as a manager for the Government Finance Officers Association, where he edited a publication called Public Investor.
During his time as community and economic development director, Greifer presided over several developer and real estate broker events at village hall that sought to spur redevelopment of Ogden Avenue and the village’s other commercial areas.
While he could count some successes in the form of new residential projects in the downtown area and a mixed-use project slated for Grand Boulevard – all by the same developer – a couple of promising developments have fallen short.
A company selected to redevelop the former Brookfield Bowl into a multifamily building recently pulled out of that deal, and has halted progress on what was to have been a mixed use building in the 8900 block of Burlington Avenue.