Pitt Meadows city hall loses senior staffer

Director engineering Forrest Smith leaving for PoCo

Forrest Smith

Forrest Smith

Pitt Meadows’ director of engineering and operations, Forrest Smith, is leaving the city for a new position in Port Coquitlam, beginning Sept. 1.

Smith has worked in Pitt Meadows, his hometown, since October 2015, after a long career in the private sector.

Mayor John Becker said Smith has been given a variety of jobs in Pitt Meadows, and “he has risen to the challenge in each instance.”

He added Smith has become an important advisor at city hall, as a senior member of the team.

Becker said as one of the smaller cities in the Metro regional district, Pitt Meadows has a challenge competing with larger cities in terms of compensation and career growth.

Port Coquitlam has a population of approximately 60,000, compared with some 19,000 residents in Pitt Meadows.

“It’s regrettable and perfectly understandable,” Becker said of Smith’s departure. “That’s the kind of go-getter we’re looking for, and we’ll have to go and get another one.”

Coun. Bill Dingwall, a mayoral candidate in the upcoming election, called Smith “a rock solid engineer and a nice guy.”

He has been involved with Pitt Meadows issues and decisions ranging from Lougheed Highway improvements to the Golden Ears Business Park development.

“That corporate knowledge is valuable,” said Dingwall. “It’s a big loss for Pitt Meadows.”

In January of this year, the city lost another senior staff member when Kate Zanon, director of community services, left for Port Moody.

Former CAO Kim Grout left in November 2015 and was replaced by Mark Roberts.