Photo via Baltimore City Mayor’s Office
Photo via Baltimore City Mayor’s Office

Baltimore City Department General Services Director Steven Sharkey is the frontrunner to become the next head of Baltimore’s transportation department, according to multiple sources familiar with the matter at City Hall.

Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young should be submitting Sharkey’s nomination sometime this month, said a source who asked to remain anonymous because they are not authorized to speak publicly about the appointment.

Another City Hall source, who requested they not be named for the same reason, said they “strongly believe” Sharkey will be the nominee, and that his background is “well-suited for DOT.”

“He seems like a good pick,” they said. “He’s got a good reputation for management and leadership development. That’s what we need in DOT.”

Young’s spokesman James Bentley II said he was not sure whether Sharkey will be the pick: “I have no information on that announcement as of yet.”

If chosen and approved by the council’s Executive Appointments Committee, Sharkey would step in for Frank Murphy, who’s been serving as acting director of the troubled department since Pugh administration hire Michelle Pourciau resigned in April.

Pourciau stepped down after The Baltimore Sun reported the city’s inspector general had launched an investigation into the morale and operations of the department. The OIG has separately published other reports exposing wage theft and other misconduct within the department in recent months.

Reached by phone, DOT spokesman German Vigil said the agency had no comment.

A city bureaucrat of 14 years, Sharkey was appointed to the director position for DGS in 2013 during the Rawlings-Blake administration. He began his career in city government in 2005 as an intern for CitiStat, and went on to serve as an analyst and then deputy director. He also served in other roles, including division chief of special services and property management within the Baltimore City Department of Public Works, and director of special projects for the Baltimore Police Department, before Rawlings-Blake made him head of DGS.

Sharkey’s office said he had left for an appointment Tuesday afternoon and was unavailable to comment. We’ve also reached out to him via email.

Ethan McLeod is a freelance reporter in Baltimore. He previously worked as an editor for the Baltimore Business Journal and Baltimore Fishbowl. His work has appeared in Bloomberg CityLab, Next City and...