Sandy Parker to delay retirement
Updated: Tuesday, October 22 2013, 05:53 AM EDT
Rochester, N.Y. - Rochester Business Alliance President Sandy Parker announced Monday she is going to delay her plans to retire and addressed speculation that her decision is related to rumors Lt. Governor Bob Duffy is interested in the job.
"I have not influenced any decision he makes on what he's going to do, if he's going to run or not." Parker said. "It was not pat of my decision to try to stay on."
Instead Parker called this a critical year of transition for the community of three fronts: a possible new mayor for Rochester, the growth of Eastman Business Park, and uncertainty as small businesses navagate health care in the wake of Obamacare.
"I've been with this community a long time and I've been in this job a long time," she said. "This organization means a lot to me and I want to make sure it stays healthy."
Parker has been RBA President since 2005 and announced her intentions to retire at the end of the year this past May. Now she says she will stay on onto 2014 but has not made a decision for how long.
More than 50 people have applied for her position, which pays $300,000 a year. Speculation surfaced earlier this year that Bob Duffy was among those interested. It has been fueled by his recent comments about his own future as an elected official.
At the opening of a new company in Lockport on Saturday, Duffy told reporters, "The governor's not even announced his own intentions yet...Once the governor announces what he is giong to do, I think it's going to be very clear in terms of our collective plans."
Parker admitts she and Duffy "have been friends for 20 years." But she makes one thing perfectly clear: "I am not part of this selection process. All I know is the selection committee had not made an offer to anybody."
She adds, "All the speculation about Bob has been generated by the media."
RBA Board Chairman Susan Holliday said, "Sandy has been an exemplary leader and we look forward to continuing to benefit from her expertise."
She declined to answer further questions about the process of selecting a new leader.