Pamela Witty-Oakland, who has helped spearhead the city’s fight to reduce homelessness, has stepped down from her position as director of the city’s Department of Community Services. It’s not clear if Mayor Kirk Caldwell has chosen her replacement. 

Witty-Oakland’s last day was a week and a half ago, according to the community services department. 

Pamela Witty-Oakland, director of the Department of Community Services answers questions from the Honolulu City Council on June 4, 2014.

Pamela Witty-Oakland, director of the Department of Community Services, answers questions from the City Council earlier this year.

PF Bentley/Civil Beat

Earlier this month, Civil Beat asked the mayor’s office about talk that Witty-Oakland would soon be leaving her position.  Jay Parasco, a spokesman for the mayor, said that he was not aware of any such pending departure. “Sorry, I don’t have more to report,” he told Civil Beat.

UPDATE: The mayor’s office confirmed on Friday that Witty-Oakland had resigned, but declined to comment on the reasons why. Parasco said that Caldwell was currently looking for a replacement. 

Prior to serving as director of the community services department, Witty-Oakland was vice president of asset management at St. Francis Healthcare System of Hawaii, where she managed leasing and property management teams for a $78 million real estate portfolio and worked on programs for fixed income seniors, according to a December 2012 press release issued by the mayor’s office at the time of her appointment.

In Caldwell’s 2013 State of the City address, he highlighted Witty-Oakland’s efforts to tackle Oahu’s homeless issues.

“The task of addressing homelessness now and in the future is daunting. I’m proud to have Jun Yang as my newly appointed Director of Housing –to be our agent of change,” the mayor said.  “Jun has been working closely with our Director of Department of Community Services, Pam Witty-Oakland and her staff, and with Hawaii’s State Coordinator on Homelessness Colin Kippen, to develop immediate, mid-range and long-term plans for combating homelessness.”

Some of the Caldwell administration’s strategies for dealing with the homeless have attracted controversy, including a recently passed law that bans sitting and lying on Waikiki sidewalks and a plan by the mayor to relocate homeless to a plot of land on Sand Island.

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