George Shaw</I>

It didn't take long for George Shaw to land on his feet.

Sixteen days after he was fired as Salt Lake City's planning director, Shaw said Wednesday he has been hired as the new community development director in South Jordan, where he has lived since 1985.

"I am excited to be a part of a growing and dynamic city," Shaw said. "It's always nice to be wanted and to work with people that value your skills and abilities."

Shaw, a longtime Sandy city planner, worked for Salt Lake City for just a little more than a year before being forced to resign March 3. New Mayor Ralph Becker opted to shake up the planning department following a review of staff, land-use ordinances and planning policies within the city's community and economic development department.

Becker said the public's lack of confidence in the planning division and the reorganization of staff to solve ongoing problems necessitated the move.

Despite being forced out of the Salt Lake job, Shaw said he "will always have a soft spot" for Utah's capital city.

"It is a city of destiny, unlike any other in the world," he said. "I will follow with continued interest the ongoing development activities in the city."

John Geilmann, South Jordan's assistant city manager for operations, said city staff is excited to have Shaw join the team.

"We know he will be an asset to help our community," Geilmann said. "He brings a lot of experience."

Shaw will begin work in South Jordan March 31. His new duties will include working on a variety of planning issues, including transit-oriented development around new commuter- and light-rail lines and the Daybreak Town Center project.

"South Jordan is poised to take its place as one of the premier cities in Utah, and I am grateful to be a part of that," Shaw said.

Salt Lake City is conducting a nationwide search for a new planning director.

Becker has assembled a leadership team to lead the department during a reorganization period. The team includes Mary De La Mare-Schaefer, interim community and economic development director; Esther Hunter, senior adviser to the mayor; Orion Goff, building services and licensing director; and Lyn Creswell, chief administrative officer.

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