Reading Mayor Vaughn Spencer announced that Lenin Agudo, the city’s director of community development, has stepped down after four years of spearheading much of the city’s downtown revitalization.
Serving as community development director since 2012, Agudo today begins a new career as director of the Widener University Small Business Development Center.
Agudo’s duties as Reading’s community development director included managing the Housing and Urban Development administration, codes, building and trades, and the bureau of Planning, Zoning and Preservation.
During his four years of service Agudo devoted himself to the city’s downtown revitalization movement to create a business-friendly city hall and worked on the city’s economic development investment map. These initiatives resulted in the city’s completion of financing for the DoubleTree by Hilton Reading, which tomorrow opens its doors for business; 27 Artist Housing apartments; and attracting the 46-unit Homes at Riverside housing development project.
Agudo also was the driving force behind obtaining Pennsylvania’s Keystone Community/Main Street designation, according to the mayor’s office, taking on the task of researching and evaluating all downtown initiatives and then authoring a five-year implementation strategy.
He also spearheaded the acquisition, developer selection and influenced redevelopment plans for the Penn Square properties at Fifth and Penn streets in the downtown.
In 2012, when Agudo began his post for the city, he inherited more than 78 monitoring and audit findings from the previous administration. The findings were a result of noncompliance with the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development and the office of Inspector General.
Under Agudo’s guidance, the community development department cleared all of the non-compliances and since then the department has operated with no audit and monitoring findings from the Federal Government.
“Lenin has been a high performance motivator, resolving long outstanding issues, and transforming his department to better serve the people of Reading,” Spencer said. “He has been a strategic relationship builder and connector and has been able to leverage relationships, federal and state funds to support economic development and housing development projects in our city.”