Norwalk is hiring a new communications director after four years

Photo of Abigail Brone
Norwalk Mayor Harry Rilling and Josh Morgan, city spokesman, discuss the new Mayor's Dashboard on Monday, August 19, 2019.

Norwalk Mayor Harry Rilling and Josh Morgan, city spokesman, discuss the new Mayor's Dashboard on Monday, August 19, 2019.

Kelly Kultys / Hearst Connecticut Media

NORWALK—Beginning in next month, the person behind the screen sharing updates and responding to questions on Norwalk’s social media pages will change, as the city hunts for a new director of communications.

Norwalk Communications Director Josh Morgan will resign his role of almost four years to act as a communications officer for a state agency. Morgan’s last day is Jan. 28.

Morgan was the first communications director for the city, after Mayor Harry Rilling developed the role in 2018.

The position for communications director, posted on the city’s website on Jan. 3, is open and accepting applications until Jan. 24.

The full-time position, which has an annual salary from $89,282 to $116,751, includes duties such as planning and implementing the city’s communication strategy to disseminate information to the public, writing press releases and running the city’s social media pages, according to the job description.

The purpose of the position is to ensure, “all citywide communications are strategically positioned, consistent, accurate, and represent the goals and objectives of the City of Norwalk.”

While Morgan did not specify which state agency he will work for, he said the move was unplanned.

“It’s sort of one of those weird things. Opportunities present themselves when you aren’t necessarily looking for them,” Morgan said. “I saw this opportunity and decided to throw my hat in the ring, not thinking much of it, and I was fortunate enough to get the position. It’s not like I was actively searching or hunting.”

Morgan has been with the city since May 2018 and previously worked as a communications manager for Planned Parenthood and a journalist, according to his LinkedIn profile.

“The mayor understands the importance of the position,” Morgan said.

Rilling will begin interviewing applicants to fill the vacancy as soon as possible once the application period closes, Morgan said.

Until a new communications director is chosen, Rilling’s Chief of Staff Laoise King will assume Morgan’s duties, he said.

“Four years ago I decided the city needed to do a better job communicating with our residents. I created the role of communications director and brought Josh (Morgan) on as the first person to hold that role,” Rilling said. “Josh has exceeded my expectations in every way. His contribution was never clearer than during the pandemic where he served the critical role of sharing information about case rates, guidance, vaccine clinics, testing opportunities, as well as directing residents to food and other resources.”

During his time in Norwalk, Morgan helped launch the city’s Instagram page and helped increase the city’s social media following by about 10,000 people from January 2018 to July 2020, according to city documents.

The number of impressions—or times content was displayed to a user—for Norwalk’s social media posts increased from about 65,000 to 391,000 in the same time frame.

He also helped make Norwalk’s content more accessible, ensuring ads for city events and new policies were displayed in Spanish, English and Haitian Creole, according to the documents.

“The city is better for his time here,” Rilling said.

abigail.brone@hearstmediact.com