Letter by Addison Resident to Todd Meier

April 22, 2015

Todd –

The dismissal of Lea Dunn as Addison’s City Manager at the special Council meeting on March 28, 2015, is “old” news, now.  But, I need to express a few of my thoughts about “all that”.  Towards the end of this special Council meeting, Chris DeFrancisco asked to be included in the search process for a new city manager for Addison, after you purposefully excluded him from those you appointed.  One of the reasons you told Chris why you did not select him was because he has been “disrespectful” to you.  You used this word toward him more than once, in that conversation.

I hardly think YOU should be “calling the kettle black”, Todd.  In describing the way you (and “your” Council members – Blake, Janelle, Mary, and David) treated Lea Dunn since she became City Manager, “disrespectful” would be one of the nicest words I could use!

You have done everything you could to make it uncomfortable and difficult for Lea to do the excellent job she is MORE than capable of, for the Town.  Including trying to block her from even assuming the job.  You turned this in to a personal and political attack on Lea.  The recent job performance rating of “Poor” you (and “your” Council members) gave Lea is laughable and, in my opinion, makes you all look pretty silly.  You and “yours” are entitled to your own opinions, but NOT to your own facts.  I do not know of an out pouring of dissatisfaction from Addison residents about Lea’s job performance over the past 18 years. Other than your personal and political desire to have your “own” City Manager, I am not aware of any valid reasons why Lea should have been given a “poor” job performance rating.

But, in looking back, I guess I shouldn’t be surprised.  The first time you were running for Mayor of Addison, you CALLED ME, looking for my support.  In telling me some of the things you would do if elected, you said you would replace Ron Whitehead.  As soon as I heard that, I told you I did NOT agree, and, thus, could not support you.  In your campaigning, I don’t remember you mentioning your position about Ron, directly.  After you were elected, any of the numerous times I heard you give a speech, you PRAISED Ron and our EXCELLENT Town staff.  I was appalled by your deceit, and knew I could not trust you.

This same public praise toward Lea was sickening to me, especially at Ron’s “appreciation/retirement” party.  It wasn’t long before you came up with every “reason” why “we” (you and “your” Council members) should do a “search” just to see if there was any one who could do a better job.  When that didn’t “fly” is when, in my opinion, you made it a personal vendetta to get rid of Lea – only because she was too much like Ron.  Bullying is not attractive in junior high, and certainly is even less so when used by an “adult”.  This behavior, by you and “your” Council members, is why I have lost all respect for all of you.  And, in my mind, your integrity has been destroyed.

I imagine when all of the people currently on the Addison City Council, including you, ran for election, they said they are “fiscally responsible”.  How can that be true when, by you and “your” Council members’ actions toward Lea, the Town had to pay Lea a significant amount of money to end her employment?  AND, you will likely spend tens of THOUSANDS more of MY dollars searching for a new city manager!  No matter how much money you spend in this search, it is my opinion that you will NOT find any one more TALENTED and DEDICATED to the “Addison Way” than Lea had been for all the years she worked for the Town.

Your duty as Mayor, as well as all the Council members, is to do what is BEST for the residents of Addison, in response to the recommendations of the City Manager.  It is NOT to do what YOU would like to have happen.  Just getting rid of the people who have different views and ideas than you can be never-ending, and certainly not fulfilling.

You may think you have “won”, Todd, by bullying Lea to resign.  But I remind you of a long-standing Truth – “what we sow IS what we will reap”.


Kathy Farrer