Simone McFarland, the current interim Public Information Officer (PIO) for the City of Burbank has been named as the permanent Communications Manager, additionally McFarland is to remain as the Assistant Community Development Director for Business and Economic Development.
McFarland has been acting PIO since July when Drew Sugars left for another position. “Simone’s background includes prior experience in both public information and economic development, which made it a logical decision to have her as the interim PIO,” said Burbank City Manager Ron Davis. “During these last few months, we have found synergies between the two roles and have leveraged both departments’ strengths by having them work together. By making this arrangement permanent, we can continue that work and include all of the departments throughout the City.”
The name change from PIO to Communications Manager reflects the changing duties of the Public Information Office to include communications and marketing as well as interacting with media outlets.
McFarland’s appointment will save the City money, as it works toward alleviating its future budget deficit. “This appointment will help with our budget concerns and at the same time will not reduce our ability to serve our residents and businesses. It’s a win-win,” stated Davis.
McFarland has served the City as an Assistant Community Development Director since January 2017.