City Names Beverly Mesa Zendt as Director of Planning and Development

November 17, 2021

City Manager Karen Conard is pleased to announce the selection of Beverly Mesa Zendt, AICP as the new City Planning and Development Director. She is expected to start work on January 10, 2022.

“I am delighted to announce that Beverly Mesa Zendt will join the City as Planning and Development Director, bringing the depth of knowledge and experience required to meet the demands of our extremely busy planning department,” said City Manager Karen Conard. “I deeply appreciate the efforts made by Interim Acting City Planning Director Peter Britz to fulfill the responsibilities of the post while managing his own as Senior Planner and Sustainability Coordinator, and to the entire Planning Department for their diligent service to the City’s planning boards and commissions while we conducted the search for a new Planning Director. Beverly is prepared to hit the ground running, in order to ensure the Planning Department experiences a seamless transition.”

Ms. Mesa Zendt brings 16 years of municipal planning department experience to the Portsmouth Planning Department. Most recently, she was Deputy Director of Planning and Community Development for the City of Redmond WA, where she managed the implementation of the Redmond 2050 Comprehensive Plan, the creation of a 2021 Housing Action Plan that secured a $100,000 Commerce Department grant, CDBG funding oversight and zoning code implementation.

Prior to that, she spent three years as Assistant Director of Planning and Community Development for Island County, Washington and three years as Assistant Director of Planning and Community Development for the City of Temple, Texas. She served as Senior Community Planner for the City of Killeen, Texas from 2007 to 2011 and began her career as Support Services Coordinator for the City of Belton, Texas.

“I am excited and grateful for the opportunity to be a part of the Portsmouth municipal team and look forward to returning to the seacoast region where I started my planning career,” said Mesa Zendt.

Ms. Mesa Zendt holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of New Hampshire, which included an internship with the City of Dover Planning Department. She graduated from the University of Texas at El Paso with a Bachelor’s degree cum laude in Political Science. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners.