Richard Kirby

Richard Kirby is the current City Manager of East Providence. He was appointed to the role in September of 2015.

Mr. Kirby has cited continued economic development, especially on the waterfront, as one of his top priorities as well as an infrastructure plan that avoids infrastructure collapse and doesn't rely on bonded debt.

Mr. Kirby currently earns $145,000 a year as part of his contract.

Controversies Edit

Appointment Edit

Mr. Kirby's first controversy started before he even took office. Mr. Kirby's selection was rumored before even the public interview sessions, rendering the public interview merely a dog-and-pony show. Many vocal community members felt the other candidate, James Cunha, did better in the interview.

A related controversy came up regarding Mr. Kirby's qualifications. Mr. Kirby does not possess an MBA or MPA as the City Charter requires, and the charter language left vague what constitutes an "equivalent" degree. City Council members relied on the word of the then Human Resource Director Kathleen Waterbury that Mr. Kirby was qualified.

Human Rights Commission Complaint Edit


Richard Kirby's public performance review.

More recently, Mr. Kirby was named in a Human Rights Commission complaint by HR Director Kathleen Waterbury for allegedly failing to respond to complaints of sexual harassment by former City Manager Paul Lemont who was still working at City Hall as a consultant. The City Council then held a job performance review of Mr. Kirby. Mr. Kirby chose to have the review in public session.

During the review, Mr. Kirby both denied Ms. Waterbury's allegations and made some allegations of his own. Mr. Kirby alleged that Mayor and Ward 3 Councilman Thomas Rose was coming into city hall on a regular basis to interfere with city business, which is explicitly not allowed under the City Charter. Rose denied the allegations and to date, those allegations have not been followed up on.

Mr. Kirby terminated Ms. Waterbury's services on performance grounds. The original Waterbury complaint and a counter-complaint against Ms. Waterbury by an HR Department staffer are still pending.

History Edit

Prior to becoming City Manager, Mr. Kirby was an attorney and partner at the law firm of Macktaz, Keefer & Kirby. Mr. Kirby served part time as Counsel to the state Senate Finance Committee.

Mr. Kirby also served as Chair of the Ethics Commission and a state overseer for Central Falls.

Mr. Kirby is a graduate of the The Catholic University of America's Columbus School of Law and a long-time resident of Rumford.

Preceded by
Paul Lemont (acting)
City Manager
2015 - Present
Succeeded by
Current Incumbent