NORTH SMITHFIELD – The woman who has led the town’s finance department for the past five years has resigned and will be moving on to a job with the state, but said this week that she plans to continue to help with town finances in a volunteer capacity.
Cynthia DeJesus turned in a letter of resignation on Monday, Jan. 9, and attended her final meeting with the Town Council as finance director this week. Her last day at Town Hall is Friday, Jan. 27 with a new job starting Monday, Jan. 30.
DeJesus, who holds a master’s in accounting from Johnson and Wales, was hired for the role by former Town Administrator Gary Ezovski in 2017. She came to North Smithfield from Central Falls, where she had previously spent four years in that finance department. Previously, DeJesus served as business manager for the Florida Department of Health.
In North Smithfield, DeJesus has been credited with streamlining the town’s budget process. Town Council President Kimberly Alves thanked her for that work, and her service at the meeting on Tuesday, Jan.17.
“You’ve done a great job and you’ve been instrumental with the Budget Committee,” Alves said. “Those are going to be hard shoes to fill, let me tell you. You’ve always made a point of making sure you were there to answer questions. and do whatever we’ve needed.”
“Thank you for everything you’ve done,” Alves said.
The news comes just as town councilors say they have nearly completed their goal of filling open positions on North Smithfield’s boards and commissions. NRI NOW reported in November that the town was expected to be short 32 volunteers after several planned to end their tenure.
This week, Councilor Paulette Hamilton pointed out that nearly all of those volunteer roles have now been filled since the new council convened last month.
“I think we’re doing a great job of getting people on these boards and commissions,” Hamilton said.
Councilor John Beauregard jokingly told DeJesus, “Since you’re not going to be working for the town anymore, if you want to get on any committees…”
DeJesus said she has already applied for a volunteer role on the town’s Budget Committee. Councilors are expected to confirm her for the role at their meeting next month after the resignation takes effect.
“I think you’d be great,” Beauregard said.
Town Administrator Paul Zwolenski said that to replace DeJesus, the town will look in house, accept applications and has taken out notice in various trade journals.
“She’s going to be sorely missed,” said Zwolenski. “She’s been phenomenal, dedicated employee who went above and beyond.”
“We look forward to her sharing her expertise on the Budget Committee when appointed,” he added.
A complete description of the job can be found here.