Joy Calloway has withdrawn from contract talks to lead the Detroit Wayne Mental Health Authority (DWMHA) as CEO.
The move came after Wayne County Executive Warren Evans, who appoints six members of the authority's board, wrote two letters to board chairman Herbert Smitherman asking that the offer to Calloway be rescinded, because of a conflict of interest.
Calloway is CEO of New Center Community Services, an agency that receives funds from the DWMHA. An audit recently found that New Center may have overbilled DWMHA by nearly two million dollars. But the board decided to settle the matter for $95,000, the amount found in a 5% sampling of New Center's claims.
Calloway wrote an impassioned letter to two members of the board on the search committee, in which she said she was retracting her acceptance because "it is abundantly clear that I am not the candidate the
County Executive wants to lead the Authority, for reasons that have absolutely nothing to do with me."
Calloway is the second CEO candidate to withdraw during contract talks; Willie Brooks was the board's first choice, but he chose to terminate negotiations in October.