Gonzales Main Street director Liz Reiley was terminated by the City of Gonzales on Tuesday afternoon, less than 48 hours after the completion of what she considered to be a successful Winterfest weekend event.
“I am pretty devastated by this and really shocked,” said Reiley, who was hired as the Main Street program manager after longtime director Barbara Freidrich retired in May 2020. “I have nothing bad to say about the city and I very much enjoyed my time working here.”
Efforts to reach City Manager Tim Patek for comment were unsuccessful before press time Wednesday, Dec. 8. As city manager, Patek is the chief administrative and executive officer of the city and may “appoint, and when necessary for the welfare of the city, remove any employee of the city, except as otherwise provided by the City Charter,” according to his job description.
Reiley said she was told Tuesday a written complaint had been filed against her for an incident that had happened during Winterfest, but she did not know who had initiated the complaint.
“I thought we had what was, for the most part, a very successful Winterfest event that was exponentially larger than any others we have held and it made a little money back for the Main Street Program,” Reiley said. “It was very chaotic as an event this large can be whenever there are a lot of volunteers and you have to be in more than one place at once as the person who knows what is going on. But this was a very good event.
“I was told the Lions’ CASI Chili Cookoff was the largest they have had. We had a great turnout for the Grinch movie on Friday and the parade went super smooth and Dan Blakemore was gracious and kind to play Santa for us. We even added a car show on Sunday that was really neat.”
Reiley, a Gonzales High School graduate, was hired by the city after four years as the administrative assistant for the Gonzales Chamber of Commerce and Agriculture. She said she is not sure what job she will seek next, but said “this may be a good time to do some ‘spring cleaning’ to get my house in order and then we will see what God has in store for me next.”
Gonzales Mayor Connie L. Kacir confirmed Reiley was no longer an employee of the city and was complimentary of her work in the Main Street program.
“Liz Riley was a lovely addition to our team,” Kacir said. “We were honored to have worked together during her employment tenure with the City of Gonzales. We wish her much success in seeking future career opportunities.
“I do not have any further comment regarding personnel matters,” Kacir added.