Don Griffin. Photo by Martin Boling

Editor’s note: The following is a press release from the City of Bloomington. Bloom has republished it here with minor edits for clarity and style.

Mayor John Hamilton has announced that he will appoint lifelong Bloomingtonian Donald C. Griffin Jr. as deputy mayor. Griffin will succeed Mick Renneisen, who has announced his retirement effective April 23.

Griffin is a Bloomington native with decades of community service and leadership. He founded, owns, and leads Griffin Realty Holdings. As deputy mayor, Griffin will coordinate and oversee 16 City departments and 850 employees working to implement the Hamilton administration’s policies and goals, including job creation, affordable housing, quality of life improvements, and efficient and transparent basic governmental services. 

“I am extremely pleased to welcome Don Griffin to the team,” says Mayor Hamilton. “Don’s personal energy and experience, his demonstrated commitment to the community, and his deep roots in neighborhoods and in so many civic institutions and efforts, all bode very well for our community’s future.”

During nearly three decades as a real estate professional and 18 years as a realty owner, Griffin has gained a deep understanding of Bloomington’s neighborhoods, residents, and wider community. Griffin’s professional work is complemented with a long and extensive record of civic engagement in the areas of racial justice, community development, and the arts. He currently serves as president of the City’s Redevelopment Commission (RDC) and president and co-founder of the Monroe County Black Democratic Caucus, and is past vice president of the Monroe County Branch of the NAACP.

Griffin has served on the boards of numerous local nonprofit organizations, including current appointments to the boards of the Indiana University Eskenazi Museum of Art, the Monroe County History Center, and The Project School. Past board service includes Habitat for Humanity of Monroe County, Lotus World Music Festival, and the Bloomington Board of Realtors, among many others.

Griffin also contributed to the development of the City’s Growth Policy Plan and has served on the Bloomington Hospital Revitalization Committee. Griffin is the recipient of the Indiana University Bicentennial Award (2020), the City’s Black History Month Visionary Award (2019), and the City’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Legacy Award (2017).

Griffin studied architecture and building construction management at Hampton University in Virginia. His family includes his wife, Nicole, who is the director of the Indiana University Visitor Information Center, and his son, Dexter, a sophomore studying classical voice performance at the IU Jacobs School of Music.  

“I love this community and I’m ready to be a part of the next chapter,” says Griffin. “I was raised here and have watched my community change and grow. I relish the challenge of helping steer our community forward while also acknowledging our great past. I would like to thank Mayor Hamilton and the rest of this incredible staff for inviting me to join the team. Let’s go!” 

Griffin will assume the office upon Renneisen’s departure and earn an annual salary of $112,073.