CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – Mike Baker, Director of Clarksville Building & Codes, will retire June 30 after more than 20 years with the department, the past seven years as director.
Baker began with Building & Codes in 1999 as a building inspector, in part to help the City manage the impact of the January 1999 tornado that damaged or destroyed dozens of buildings across the city, especially downtown. In 2008 he was promoted to Building Official and was named Director in 2012, after serving as interim director for 14 months.
“My decision to retire was bittersweet,” Baker said. “I’ve always enjoyed my work, and I’ve been thankful for the opportunity to serve the citizens of Clarksville. But I’ll turn 62 this week, and I feel the time is right to turn over the department to the next generation.”
Managing the building boom driven by Clarksville’s rapid growth has been the big theme of Baker’s tenure at Building & Codes, which is responsible for quality construction and orderly development through code and zoning enforcement, inspections and abatement.
“Clarksville has been very lucky in terms of growth, and we’ve worked hard to expand the department, both in terms of manpower and services, to keep up with the building activity,” Baker said. “I was directly involved in tornado recovery, and helped oversee the Clarksville Marina and Liberty Park project. We’ve also been part of an era of tremendous growth in construction of homes and large multifamily apartment complexes.”
Building & Codes also saw upgrades in codes and services during Baker’s time with the department. For example, Clarksville upgraded from a system of regional codes and adopted the International Building Code as its standard in 2003. The department also expanded into managing electrical inspections in 2010 and added mechanical code enforcement and inspections in 2012, taking over responsibilities previously handled by the State of Tennessee.
Mayor Joe Pitts thanked Baker for his work to grow and improve Clarksville Building & Codes.
“Mike Baker deserves our gratitude for his dedicated and skillful leadership of Building & Codes for these many years,” Mayor Pitts said. “Mike has been a tough but fair enforcer of the rules, and he’s earned the respect of his colleagues within city government and his counterparts in the building industry. We’re going to miss him, but we wish him well as he moves into the next chapter of his life.”
Baker said he looks forward to an active retirement filled with family time and travel, especially to sporting events involving his beloved University of Kentucky Wildcats.
Mike Baker, Director of Clarksville Building & Codes, has announced he will retire on June 30, after 20 years with the department.