After 15 months on the job, the “czar” overseeing White House efforts to revive communities hit by the automotive downturn is stepping down.
Ed Montgomery, who previously served as a dean at the University of Maryland, has been named the new dean of public policy at Georgetown University. His departure will put pressure on an administration struggling to soften the blow delivered when General Motors and Chrysler declared bankruptcy, last year, using court protection to close dozens of plants and assembly lines across the country.
In a statement from the White House, President Barack Obama praised Montgomery for his “tireless effort to cut through red tape and speed the economic recovery for those hit hardest by the auto industry’s struggles.”
After years of steady downsizing, GM and Chrysler cut even more plants during their brief runs through bankruptcy court, last year. Their shuttered factories now dot much of the country, and communities across the nation have been hammered by not only the loss of jobs but sharp declines in revenues from companies that often served as the biggest local taxpayers.