Don Borut, who has served as executive director of the National League of Cities since 1990, will retire at the end of the year, the organization announced this week.
The league will soon begin a national search for only its third executive director in 37 years. "My appreciation for those in local elected office is even stronger today than when I started,” Borut said in a statement. “The ability of local elected officials to address the unique challenges in their communities and find common ground to make decisions affecting the quality of life of their citizens reflects the fundamental strength of democratic local government." Borut became NLC’s executive director in 1990 after working as the deputy executive director of the International City Management Association. His predecessor at the head of NLC, Alan Beals, took the job in 1975, which means NLC will soon have only is third executive director in nearly four decades. Before entering associations community, Borut worked for the city of Ann Arbor, Mich. in the 1960s." NLC, which has a membership of more than 1,600 jurisdictions, advocates on behalf of cities and towns to the federal governments and also provides programs, workshops and training to local municipal leaders. "Under Don’s leadership over the past two decades, NLC has grown and flourished as the voice and resource for cities, towns and villages throughout the United States,” Bluffton, Ind. Mayor Ted Ellis, president of NLC, said in a statement. Borut is the the third “Big 7” leader to leave his position in recent months. Last year, National Governors Association Executive Director Raymond Scheppach left his post after leading the organization for 28 years. In 2010, Carl Tubbesing, the deputy executive director of the National Conference of State Legislatures, retired after 25 years with the organization. He led the Denver-based organization’s Washington office.