Yes, we unfortunately have yet another story involving close friends or relatives of New York City Mayor Eric Adams somehow winding up in some of the highest-paying jobs in the municipal government. (Also, I couldn’t resist the temptation of writing a headline with the phrase “gal pal” in it.) The latest lucky recipient of all of this taxpayer-funded largesse is Lisa White. She recently landed a job as the NYPD Commissioner for Employee Relations. That’s a pretty good gig to have in the Big Apple because it pays $241,000 per year. And that comes on top of a $30,000 pension she was already receiving after retiring from her old job. Since Adams used to be a police commissioner and Ms. White worked inside the NYPD, it is perhaps unsurprising that they might know each other, but their relationship runs far deeper than that. (Daily Mail)
A former 911 dispatcher and longtime friend of New York City Mayor Eric Adams currently holds one of the highest paying jobs in the city.
Lisa White was appointed commissioner for employee relations by the NYPD in May – a position which came with a $241,000 per year salary – after earning just $53,000 following a 24 years as a 911 operator.
In addition to her six-figure salary, White also brings in a $30,000 per year pension.
So how big of a step up was this for Lisa White? It’s more of an elevator than a “step.” She worked for more than twenty years as a 911 operator. That’s an important job to be sure, and she no doubt helped a lot of people over the years. But how does being a switchboard operator qualify someone to be the Commissioner for Employee Relations? It sounds like those two skill sets don’t match up all that well.
Ms. White also isn’t someone who only recently caught the Mayor’s attention because of her outstanding performance at her old job. The two have reportedly known each other for many years. In fact, they used to live together when Adams sublet a room in White’s Crown Heights apartment from 2013 to 2017. There hasn’t been any suggestion of any sort of romantic relationship between them, but they were definitely close friends at a minimum.
You might think that the Mayor would experience some feeling of embarrassment when plucking up one of his dear friends and placing her among the highest-paid people in the city government. But recent history shows us that you would be incorrect. Adams had barely found the locations of the rest rooms at City Hall before he started handing out lucrative jobs to people in his inner circle.
In March of this year, Edu Hermelyn, a donor and campaign consultant, was forced to resign as a Social Services “senior adviser for strategic initiatives” almost immediately after taking the job. He turned out to be ineligible for the position. That all took place after Adams attempted to hire his own brother to be the head of his security detail, a position that would have paid nearly a quarter million per year. The brother later took a position as an adviser.
The list doesn’t stop there. Adams already hired his longtime friend and former police colleague Timothy Pearson to be another “adviser.” Pearson is making more than $240,000 per year. In an even more clever move, Adams and the city Schools Chancellor managed to hire each other’s girlfriends for high-paying jobs earlier this year. The list goes on from there.
As I’ve written here before, I had actually entertained high hopes that Adams would turn out to be a breath of fresh air in New York City politics. As a former Republican and NYPD honcho, he promised to clean up the mess at City Hall. But as these stories of obvious nepotism and insider perks pile up, he’s turned out to be more of the same old business as usual.