Matthew Kriegl is leaving Main Street.
The 28-year-old was hired last March to be the manager of Havre de Grace Main Street LLC, a nonprofit promoting economic and cultural development in downtown Havre de Grace. In his role as manager, Kriegl helped with special events planning, the organization's website and many other initiatives to promote the business community in the downtown district of Havre de Grace.
After this week, Kriegl will be embarking on his next adventure, in Texas, where he will be working for Houston's planning department.
"It’s more in my field, which is historic preservation," Kriegl told Patch. "I’ll be a preservation planner there, working with the historic districts and historic buildings in Houston."
"I always was interested in historic things as I grew up," said Kriegl, who is a New Jersey native.
Moving from Havre de Grace, which was founded in 1782, to Houston, founded in the first half of the 19th century, will be a transition, he said.
Kriegl's last day with Main Street will be Jan. 17.
“We’re excited for him,” said Billee Smith, president of the board of directors for Main Street.
“This is a great opportunity for him to move forward. Realistically, when we hired him, we knew we probably wouldn’t have him long because of his talent and his education and his age,” Smith said.
Kriegl contributed to the evolution of the Main Street website and commemorative Graw Days festival, Smith said.
“He has been an asset to Main Street,” Smith said. She noted his personality as a key to his success in moving Main Street forward.
“He’s been able to talk to anybody, and he’s built a lot of relationships," Smith said. "People trust him. He’s been a real positive to Main Street.”
Kriegl said he tried to build efficiencies and create unity among the major stakeholders in downtown Havre de Grace.
"I try to bring a lot of people together," Kriegl said. "I brought a bunch of people together who had drifted apart."
He noted that he liked the proximity and walkability of things in Havre de Grace, where he resided on Union Avenue.
"I think I’ll miss its location," said Kriegl of Havre de Grace. "It’s quaint. I like walking everywhere."
He will be missed too, Smith said.
“He’s very community minded and we were lucky to have him,” Smith said. “We’re sad to see him go but so thrilled with this opportunity and everything that is going to come his way.”
His first day on the job with the city of Houston will be Feb. 4. In the meantime, Kriegl will be going back to New Jersey, where he used to live and where his girlfriend, Susan, is in school. She plans to move to Houston after she graduates in the summer.
"We grew up in small towns and we lived in small places," Kriegl said. "The fourth largest city in America is Houston. It's going to be a learning curve."