Monday, July 4, 2022

City of Wilmington names new planning director

WILMINGTON —The City of Wilmington has named a new leader to guide the city’s growth.

Linda Painter will take on the role of planning and development director starting July 5. She comes from the Town of Mansfield, Connecticut, where she was also the planning director. Painter succeeds Glenn Harbeck, who retired at the end of September.

“I’m looking forward to helping the community meet the challenges of accommodating a growing population while maintaining the character and livability that made them want to call Wilmington home,” Painter said in a release. “The city has a talented team of planners who have a great deal to be proud of, and I am eager to have the opportunity to work with them. I am especially excited about the opportunity to advance the city’s commitment to equitable opportunities for all those who call Wilmington home to share in the city’s prosperity and quality of life.”

Painter earned her Master of Science Community and Regional Planning from the University of Texas at Austin in 1994 and went on to serve more than two decades as a planner in both the public and private sectors.

She began her career as a planner for the City of Orlando, Florida in 1995. Her resume also includes the positions of deputy director of planning and policy for the City of Providence, Rhode Island; chief planner and zoning official in Orlando and an urban Planner at Edaw Inc.

“While there are several major projects on the horizon that will have tremendous positive impact on the city, I’m also motivated to get started on the smaller, neighborhood scale projects that will make the city more connected and convenient and improve the day-to-day lives of residents,” Painter said.

Deputy City Manager Thom Moton helped lead the search and believes Painter is an ideal fit for Wilmington.

“Wilmington has an exceptional team of planners who have produced incredible work over the past several years, with a new Comprehensive Plan and wholesale rewrite of our Land Development Code,” Deputy City Manager Thom Moton, who led the search for Painter, said. “Linda’s broad experience in both larger and historic cities will provide a valuable leadership complement to our Planning and Development team, and we are excited to have her join the city.”

Painter will oversee a 24-person staff and guide urban planning, historic preservation, zoning administration and enforcement, current planning, and development review functions, according to the city’s announcement.

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Alexandria Sands
Alexandria Sands is a journalist covering New Hanover County and education. Before Port City Daily, she reported for the award-winning State Port Pilot in Southport. She graduated from UNC Charlotte and wrote for several Charlotte publications while there. When not writing, Williams is most likely in the gym, reading or spending time with her Golden Pyrenees. Reach her at or on Twitter @alexsands_

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