Jason Perkins-Cohen. Photo via LinkedIn.

The director of the Mayor’s Office of Employment Development, Jason Perkins-Cohen, is resigning from his role after eight years, the mayor’s office announced Tuesday.

“It has been a tremendous honor to serve my hometown and work within the agency to bring truth to our shared value that ‘every resident deserves the opportunity for meaningful work and a hopeful future,” Perkins-Cohen said in a statement. “Thank you Mayor Scott for entrusting me and for your historic investment in the city’s workforce that is paying dividends now and for generations to come.”

Mackenzie Garvin, chief of staff in the employment development office, will serve as acting director after Perkins-Cohen’s resignation, effective March 21.

Garvin previously served as the director of workforce development projects in that same office for more than six years; as well as in the mayor’s office as the deputy director for minority and women-owned business development for more than a year and special assistant for economic and neighborhood development for three and a half years, according to her LinkedIn page.

Under Perkins-Cohen’s leadership, the employment development office has helped more than 30,000 city residents find a job. It also trained thousands of residents through its One Baltimore for Jobs, Grads2Careers, and Train Up initiatives.

The agency also expanded the city’s YouthWorks summer jobs program for young people by 60% in Perkins-Cohen’s first year as director.

The office has connected residents with paid public service opportunities through the development of the Baltimore Health Corps, Hire Up, and Clean Corps programs. It has also directed more job assistance services into historically underinvested neighborhoods, the mayor’s office said.

“For almost a decade, Jason Perkins-Cohen dedicated himself to serving Baltimoreans by connecting them to economic opportunities that set them on the path to financial freedom,” Mayor Brandon Scott said in a statement. “I wish Mr. Perkins-Cohen all of the best in his future endeavors, and it has been my honor and privilege to watch the transformation of this office over the years.”

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Marcus Dieterle

Marcus Dieterle is the managing editor of Baltimore Fishbowl. He returned to Baltimore in 2020 after working as the deputy editor of the Cecil Whig newspaper in Elkton, Md. He can be reached at marcus@baltimorefishbowl.com...

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