News Flash


Posted on: August 30, 2023

Director of Public Works Jacob Speer retires

jacob speer headshot

After serving the community for more than 24 years, Director of Public Works Jacob Speer is retiring. His last day with the City will be Friday, September 1.

Originally from Kansas, Jacob earned a Bachelor of Science in Public Affairs from Emporia State University in Emporia, Kansas. In 1999, as part of completing a Master of Public Administration in Local Government Management from the University of Kansas, he accepted an internship with the City of University Park in the City Manager’s Office. During the next two years, Jacob was assigned a variety of duties, including stints as acting purchasing manager and acting parks director.     

After his internship, Jacob’s titles and responsibilities with the City grew in scope and authority. Along the way he served as assistant to the director of public works, assistant director of public works, acting director of community development and deputy director of public works.  In 2015, Jacob was named director of public works. In that position, Jacob has had oversite of 91 employees with an operating budget of more than $14 million annually. Department personnel manage and maintain engineering, traffic signs, signals and pavement markings, streets, water, sanitary and storm sewer utilities, sanitation and City rights-of-way. In 2018, the department received accreditation from the American Public Works Association. Only 18 public works departments in Texas hold that certification. 

The duties that fall under the banner of public works are critically important to municipal operations, from the collection of trash and recycling, to the ongoing work to modernize all our traffic signals, and much more. Jacob’s efforts will continue to benefit the residents of University Park in the years ahead through his involvement in multiple complex projects.  These included the reconstruction of the McFarlin bridge and installation of a dam south of the bridge, the installation of new stormwater pipes to reduce street flooding along Hillcrest and Southwestern, the replacement of underground utilities in Snider Plaza and his collaboration with Dallas County to help fund planned reconstruction of the Miracle Mile.      

Ready to begin the next chapter of his life and career, along with his wife Kim and two sons, Mason and Max, Jacob is returning to Kansas to be closer to family. 

City Manager Robbie Corder and his team are developing a transition plan and recruitment strategy to successfully guide the department forward. Those details will be announced in the coming days.

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