CARY — Old Cary will have a new czar soon: George “Ed” Gawf will leave his post at the end of May, and the search for a new downtown development manager is underway.
Gawf, 69, had a hand in The Cary, a new town-owned venue that’s set to open later this year, and he recruited businesses such as Café 121 and brought in Larry’s Beans and The Mayton Inn. He also inspired debate about the Opportunity Site, a central town-owned block where Gawf wants to invite private development.
Gawf was hired in 2011 at a salary of $85,000, carrying a 40-year resume and beating out hundreds of candidates for the new post. Previously, he was planning director in Boulder, Colo., and Palo Alto, Calif., and assistant city manager in Scottsdale, Ariz., where he also had a private practice.
Gawf will remain in the Triangle and work as a consultant. In that role, he may continue to work with the town while the new downtown manager gets settled in. Gawf’s last day is May 31, and the search for his replacement is expected to draw candidates from across the country.