Bowser withdraws embattled nominee to run DC 911 center

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser is withdrawing the nominee she wanted to run the city’s 911 call center, prompting a nationwide search for a new director.

Karima Holmes was the nominee to lead the Office of Unified Communications until Bowser pulled her from consideration on Monday.

Bowser, calling Holmes a nationally recognized 911 expert, said in a statement she regrets pulling the nomination.

“It is with regret that we are withdrawing her nomination and will begin a nationwide search for a new director. As we conduct that search, Director Holmes will continue to lead OUC in an interim capacity for the next 60 days,” Bowser said.

It became clear the city council was not going to approve Holmes after members expressed several concerns, including errors that lead to delays in emergency services and loss of life.

Just last week D.C. Councilman, Charles Allen, who chairs the council’s public safety committee, warned that the nomination would likely fail.

“The public and many members of the Council have had concerns about the leadership and operations of the Office of Unified Communications for some time,” Allen said.

An audit that year blamed the agency’s problems on leadership. Holmes recently said, “we get it right the majority of the time,” emphasizing a reported agency error rate below .001%.

Holmes has run the agency since 2015 and resigned in January 2021 — she had been running the agency on an interim basis.

Kyle Cooper

Weekend and fill-in anchor Kyle Cooper has been with WTOP since 1992. Over those 25 years, Kyle has worked as a street reporter, editor and anchor. Prior to WTOP, Kyle worked at several radio stations in Indiana and at the Indianapolis Star Newspaper.

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