Tempe Public Works Director ousted in ongoing department turmoil

Tempe City Hall / KTAR


By Joseph Flaherty | Phoenix New Times

The Tempe city manager has removed the director of the Public Works Department after an investigation this summer found two of his top managers violated rules prohibiting “abusive” and disrespectful workplace conduct.

The change at the top of the department follows months of turmoil resulting from the joint diversity-human resources investigation, which Phoenix New Times has detailed in several articles.

Don Bessler will leave his job next week after eight years leading the Tempe Public Works Department. In an email obtained by New Times, Tempe City Manager Andrew Ching wrote to all Public Works employees on Friday to tell them that Bessler will leave city employment effective November 9.


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