Denver Public Safety Director Murphy Robinson appointed deputy mayor

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock announced Friday that Public Safety Director Murphy Robinson will serve as the city’s deputy mayor next year.

Robinson will replace Don Mares, the city’s human services director, in the position. This will be his second term as deputy mayor, city spokesman Mike Strott said in a release. Robinson first served as deputy in 2019.

The position of deputy mayor is meant to perform the duties of the mayor whenever the city’s chief executive is unable to perform those duties themselves, Strott said. The position must be filled by a member of the mayor’s cabinet and each appointment lasts for one year.

Robinson has been front of mind for many this year, especially as the George Floyd protests erupted this summer and he has promised systemic change within the city’s police and sheriff’s departments.

A recent report from the city’s independent monitor slammed the police department’s handling of those protests, noting the department was plagued by poor communication, the use of excessive force and inadequate record-keeping. Police Chief Paul Pazen, who reports to Robinson, promised sweeping changes following the report.

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