De Blasio’s sanitation commissioner tenders resignation
John Doherty will serve his last day as New York City's sanitation commissioner on March 28.
Then he will go to Aruba for vacation, according to a department spokesman.
Mayor Bill de Blasio's office had no immediate comment, but it's been a rocky snow season for the lifelong civil servant, who began his career in 1960 as a trash collector.
He ultimately rose to the position of commissioner, serving first under Rudy Giuliani and then under Michael Bloomberg. During the Bloomberg-to-de Blasio transition, Doherty agreed to stay on for one last snow season while the new mayor searched for his replacement.
He ended up leading the department through an unusually high number of blizzards, with an apparently suboptimal level of support from City Hall.
In January, new mayor criticized the sanitation department's efforts collecting snow on the Upper East Side.
After which, the New York Post ran a photo of Doherty sitting outside the mayor's offices like a schoolboy awaiting a principal's reprimand.
The New York Times, in a long article entitled, "A Rough Final Winter for New York’s Sanitation Chief," detailed a press conference during which, following a discussion about snowstorms, de Blasio thanks "his team" but "the commissioner’s name went conspicuously unmentioned."
The article earned the press an unusually energetic protest from the mayor.
"I extend my deepest gratitude to Commissioner Doherty – on behalf of all New Yorkers – for his decades of service at the Department of Sanitation," said de Blasio, in a statement. "He has exhibited leadership, competency and tenacity for New York City in the most challenging times. He has never failed to persevere in the most trying situations. He has always delivered for New Yorkers – when they needed it the most. I could not have been more fortunate to begin my term as mayor with a commissioner like that at my side, especially during my transition. Through his experience and skill at what he does, he shows us – every day – that New Yorkers never avert their eyes to adversity. And that’s in large part because of leaders like John."