PHILADELPHIA — Mayor Jim Kenney and Commerce Director Anne K. Nadol announced today that Lynn T. Newsome will join the Department of Commerce as the Deputy Commerce Director for the Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) effective today, Monday, April 18. 

“With her experience, qualifications, and intimate knowledge of City government operations, Ms. Newsome is perfectly suited to take the helm at OEO at this critical time in our economic recovery from the pandemic,” said Mayor Jim Kenney. “In collaboration with our City departments and partner organizations, she’ll focus on increasing opportunities available for and building the capacity of minority-, women-, and disabled-owned business enterprises so they can grow and thrive in Philadelphia.”

As a Deputy Commerce Director for the Office of Economic Opportunity, Newsome will ensure that the City of Philadelphia works with diverse businesses to fulfill its needs for goods and services. OEO aims to reach 35 percent participation from minority-, women-, and disabled-owned enterprises (M/W/DSBEs) on its contracts.

Lynn T. Newsome joined the City of Philadelphia in 2009, serving as Director of Compliance at the Division of Housing and Community Development (DHDC), where she was responsible for assuring compliance with federal, state, and local requirements pertaining to equal employment opportunity and affirmative action programs for all contracted and subcontracted work under the DHCD, the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority (PRA), and the Philadelphia Housing Development Corporation (PHDC). The Division of Housing and Community Development is part of the Department of Planning and Development.

“I am excited for this incredibly rewarding opportunity to help drive an equitable recovery from the pandemic and continue to identify ways to cultivate and grow minority-, women-, and disabled-owned businesses that power our communities,” said Lynn Newsome. “The work and mission of the talented OEO team is a passion of mine and I look forward to working with them, the entire Department of Commerce, and all of our partner agencies to expand opportunity and level the playing field for all businesses while building capacity and expanding training and development programs that will support our diverse business community.”

In addition to her 13 years in City government Newsome has 10 years in state government, working in the Department of Labor and Industry, the Governor’s Office of Administration, Pennsylvania State Civil Service Commission, Department of Public Welfare, and the Department of Health. Newsome was also a certified Equal Opportunity trainer for eight of her ten years in state government. Prior to her state employment, she was a legislative Intern in the PA House of Representatives where she wrote a bill entitled, “Children’s Rights to a Stable Home.”  

Lynn is a former small business owner and holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Cheyney University, a master’s degree in Public Administration with certificates in Public Sector Budgeting and Human Resources from Penn State University, and an Executive Certified Master Compliance Administrator (ECMCA) Certificate in compliance administration from Morgan State University in Baltimore Maryland through the American Contract Compliance Association.

Newsome is a strong advocate for the education of compliance professionals and a member of the American Contract Compliance Association (ACCA) where she served both as a regional coordinator for the 11 states in the Northeast region from 2007 to 2010 and a member of their Board of Directors from 2010-2013. Ms. Newsome Chaired ACCA’s National Training Institute held in Philadelphia in 2012.

Newsome takes over the role of Deputy Commerce Director for the Office of Economic Opportunity after the departure of Iola Harper, who left the City last fall. 

Lynn T. Newsome’s headshot is available upon request.

The Office of Economic Opportunity promotes the economic development of M/W/DSBEs through its certification program, contract review and monitoring activities, as well as ongoing interaction with other City departments, quasi-public agencies and the local marketplace.

The mission of the Department of Commerce is to ensure that Philadelphia is a globally competitive city to which employers flock, entrepreneurs thrive and innovation abounds; to recruit and retain a diverse set of businesses; to foster economic opportunities for all Philadelphians in all neighborhoods; and to partner with workforce development programs and local businesses on talent development ensuring that all Philadelphians can find and retain living-wage jobs. For more information about the Department of Commerce, visit