Department of Metropolitan Development director Carr takes job with Parks Alliance

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Rusty Carr

Rusty Carr is stepping down from his role as director of the Indianapolis Department of Metropolitan Development next month to join The Parks Alliance of Indianapolis.

Carr will succeed interim CEO Greg Fennig, who has held the post since the departure of previous CEO Lori Hazlett in June 2022. His final day with the city will be Dec. 29 and he will begin at The Parks Alliance on  Jan. 2.

The not-for-profit Parks Alliance is part of the Central Indiana Community Foundation and oversees philanthropic efforts for the improvements to facilities in the Indianapolis Department of Parks and Recreation system.

“Public parks are the foundation of thriving neighborhoods and a high quality of life, and I am eager to collaborate with the dedicated team at Indy Parks and Recreation to raise and provide support for parks,” Carr said in written remarks. “Together, we will work toward a more vibrant and playful Indianapolis.”

In his role as DMD director, Carr has been responsible for overseeing all city planning and historic preservation efforts including large-scale redevelopment projects, economic development and incentives, real estate transactions, the city’s land bank, and distribution of grants from the U.S. Dept. of Housing & Urban Development.

He was hired to the post in December 2022 after two separate stints as interim director following the departures of his predecessors: Emily Mack, who accepted a job in Tennessee; and Scarlett Andrews, who is now a deputy mayor.

During his time at the helm, Carr was involved in the creation of the Spark on the Circle pedestrian area on Monument Circle, as well as negotiations for several high-profile projects including the redevelopments of City Market and Old City Hall, along with ongoing discussions for the Eleven Park development.

He previously worked for the city as a revenue/budget analyst in the controller’s office focusing on primary revenue streams and tax increment financing.

“From his visionary work leading [Spark] in the heart of our city to prioritizing quality of place in our neighborhoods, Rusty’s leadership has been an integral part of accelerating our housing and development progress,” Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett said in written remarks. “I am ecstatic to have him at the helm of the Parks Alliance as a true ally at a time when transformative work is being done to strengthen Indy’s 214 parks.”

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