The City of Greeley welcomes Donald M. Tripp as a deputy city manager and Juliana Kitten as an assistant city manager. Both have prolific records of public service in municipal leadership positions.
Tripp replaces interim deputy city manager, Becky Safarik, whom Lee thanked for filling the role for the last 12 months. Safarik, a longtime city leader, rejoined the city during Lee’s appointment as interim city manager and now as city manager. Safarik will continue to serve as interim director of Community Development until that role is filled.
Kitten replaces former assistant city manager Abbie Poniatowski, who vacated the position in early 2021, and will take over the homelessness and housing responsibilities from interim chief resiliency officer Heather Balser
“These positions will help elevate our ability to provide service to Greeley residents with a greater emphasis on our most critical work, including infrastructure, homelessness and housing,” Lee said. “Juliana and Donald bring a wealth of experience with proven success developing and leading strategic initiatives across government sectors.”
As one of two deputy city managers, Tripp will lead the city’s community vitality efforts. He’ll oversee departments including Community Development; Culture, Parks and Recreation; and Public Works. Deputy City Manager Paul Fetherston will continue to oversee the city’s enterprise resources departments including Human Resources, Finance, Information Technology, and the City Clerk’s Office.
Tripp has over three decades of municipal government experience. He most recently served six years as city manager of Westminster. In addition to developing strategic planning efforts and implementing responsive strategies for the city, he led economic improvements that included redeveloping the former regional mall into a downtown, adding 5,000 new jobs and two corporate headquarters, and the opening of a passenger rail station.
“I am honored to join the Greeley team and Raymond’s leadership,” Tripp said. “It’s exciting to come on board and be part of helping shape the future of this community. This has been my life’s work, and I’ll do all I can to support the vision.”
Tripp earned a bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University. Among his professional service, he led Westminster to becoming a founding member of the Colorado Smart Cities Alliance.
With the city, he replaces interim deputy city manager Becky Safarik, whom Lee thanked for filling the role vacated when Lee became city manager. Safarik will continue to serve as interim director of Community Development until that role is filled.
As part of her assistant city manager responsibilities, Kitten will lead the city’s homelessness and housing initiatives.
Her 20 years of experience include leadership in local, state, and federal government in the areas of mental health, homelessness, community development, and medical center operations. Her accomplishments include reducing homelessness in multiple settings and sites in Oklahoma and Texas. That includes with the City of Amarillo, where a pilot program she led decreased chronic homelessness by 7% in 18 months. She currently is director of Management Support Services for the Tulsa Center for Behavioral Health and director of Housing First Training and Implementation for the Pathways Housing First Training Institute. She previously served as director of Community Development for the City of Amarillo.
"I’m excited and grateful to join the efforts aimed at making homelessness rare, brief and non-recurring in Greeley while also working to establish a continuum of housing to meet the needs of those who want to live in Greeley,” Kitten said. “I’m thrilled to join the leadership team to support their efforts as the city grows and expands. Most of all, I look forward to making Greeley my home and joining the community.”
She earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Albany and a master’s degree from the University of Chicago.
Tripp and Kitten’s first day with the city will be Sept. 19.