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Dominick E. Murray (The Daily Record/Maximilian Franz)

Murray resigns from DBED

Dominick E. Murray has resigned his position as the secretary of the Department of Business and Economic Development.

The resignation, which is effective at the close of business Tuesday, was announced in an email to department employees Monday afternoon.

“Given the last-minute nature of the resignation coming on the heels of Dominick’s departure for Ireland, he did not have a chance to inform everyone at that time as he had wanted,” Deputy Secretary Robert L. Walker wrote in the email announcement.

Walker was not available. Maureen Kilkullen, a spokeswoman for the department, confirmed the authenticity of the email.

Murray is currently out of the country and expected to return on Jan. 8, according to the email.

Murray’s departure from the agency was not completely unexpected given the election of an incoming Republican governor.

Murray was appointed to the position in January 2013 by Democratic Gov. Martin J. O’Malley. Prior to that, Murray served four years as deputy secretary of the agency and two additional years as an assistant secretary for regional development.

Gov.-Elect Larry Hogan, who ran a campaign focused on improving the state’s business climate, has not yet announced his choice for the position. Hogan in 2013 expressed concern about Murray’s appointment.

“I am concerned that Mr. Murray’s marketing background in the media industry signals an intent to continue to focus more on press releases, slide shows and videos that only promote the governor’s national political aspirations,” Hogan said in a statement at the time.

“Job creation is too important for Marylanders to let this agency devolve into an advertising agency for Martin O’Malley,” Hogan wrote. “For this department to be relevant will require tremendous leadership, and the new secretary must assert his independence from day one. Marylanders interested in jobs and economic opportunity can’t afford our state’s lead agency attracting businesses to be a pawn on the Governor’s chessboard.”

Walker, in his email, said he will serve as acting secretary for the agency until noon on Jan. 21, when Hogan takes the oath of office.