City of Highland Park Appoints Ron Bannon as Director of Public Works
September 23, 2022 – The City of Highland Park is pleased to announce that Deputy Director of Public Works Ron Bannon will serve as Highland Park’s newest Director of Public Works, following the departure of longtime Director/Assistant City Manager Ramesh Kanapareddy.
As Deputy Director, Bannon was responsible for the day-to-day management of the Operations Division, with oversight of, Streets, Sewer, Water Distribution, Facilities, Fleet, and Forestry, where he implemented operational efficiencies, environmentally-friendly improvements, and other refinements. Bannon managed multiple large-scale initiatives, including the Citywide multi-year water meter replacement, three sanitary sewer lift station rehabilitation projects, and public-facing streetscape projects. Bannon assisted with the City’s flood mitigation planning and analysis alongside partners at the Lake County Stormwater Management Commission and the US Army Corps of Engineers, and developed the City’s sewer lateral cost share program, which provides partial reimbursement for homeowners’ mitigation of the private sewer lateral to help minimize house and property flooding. Bannon was also appointed lead negotiator for the Department during the three most recent union contract renewal negotiations.
Prior to his tenure in Highland Park, Bannon served as Director of Public Works for the Village of Lansing, where he implemented a complete restructuring of the Public Works Department, oversaw the staged privatization of refuse and yard waste collection, and initiated the development of the Department and the Village’s first true GIS system, as part of the South Suburban GIS Consortium. As Director of Public Works for the Village of Thornton, Bannon was responsible for managing the water and sewer systems, streets, trees, sidewalks, village buildings and recreational park maintenance. Bannon also served as the operator in charge of the water system, responsible for conducting and overseeing all required sampling, testing, and reporting.
“In his eight years with the City of Highland Park, Director Bannon has been integral to the success of numerous large-scale projects that directly impact the day-to-day quality of life for residents in our community,” said City Manager Ghida Neukirch. “In addition, he has truly distinguished himself as a leader, building strong relationships and managing the City’s public works operation effectively and in a fiscally responsible manner. I am confident that Director Bannon will continue to deliver the exceptionally high quality of service our community expects.”
Reflective of deep knowledge across multiple technical disciplines, Bannon has achieved a number of certifications and licensures within the provision of Public Works, including as an IEPA Class A Water Operator, an ISA Certified Arborist, multiple credentials from the National Association of Sewer Service Companies, and an ICC/AACE Certified Property Maintenance & Housing Inspector among others. Bannon is also a program graduate of the Illinois Public Services Institute and studied Business Administration at Indiana Wesleyan University. Within the profession, Bannon has served as Chairman/President of the South Suburban Water Works Association and as Deputy Zone Chief of the Suburban Public Works Directors Association.
“I am honored to lead the incredible team at Public Works,” said Bannon. “With more than 80 full- and part-time staff members across our four divisions, the Department of Public Works consistently delivers responsive and anticipatory service to Highland Park and to our water service subscribers in communities throughout the North Shore. I look forward to continuing our work to maintain and enhance the City’s critical infrastructure, provide high-quality potable water, offer reliable public transit, and invest in preserving Highland Park’s natural resources.”
Prior to his departure, Assistant City Manager/Director of Public Works Kanapareddy was recognized at the Monday, August 15 City Council meeting, where the Mayor, City Council and City Manager Neukirch remarked on achievements during his tenure and many contributions as a member of the City’s Senior Staff. Kanapareddy left Highland Park for an appointment as Executive Director of the Northwest Suburban Municipal Joint Action Water Agency.
For more information, please contact the City Manager’s Office at 847.926.1000.