Mark Sweeney, an experienced planner from Austin, Texas, is making the move to Shreveport, having accepted the position of Executive Director of the Metropolitan Planning Commission of Caddo Parish.

The announcement came tfrom Lea Desmarteau, who chairs the MPC. The position was vacated in January when long-time executive director Charles Kirkland retired.Desmarteau said the MPC Board has great expectations for Sweeney.

Sweeney was one of four candidates the MPC Board interviewed at a public meeting held on July 23. He brings to Shreveport many years of experience in a variety of public and private-sector planning specialties.

 He begins working in Shreveport on October 1.

``We plan to take full advantage of his extensive work experience with elected officials, the business community, neighborhood groups and planning professionals,’’ Desmarteau said. 

During his interview, Sweeney emphasized the assets Shreveport has and how he considers this position to be a “professional challenge.”  He also said welcomed the opportunity to make a real difference and looks forward to helping implement elements of the still-new Master Plan as well as contributing to the ongoing work on the Unified Development Code.