Cuyahoga County’s former human resources chief, who pleaded guilty six months ago to misdemeanor charges as part of a corruption probe, is now working for Cleveland State University as a $140,000-a-year associate vice president of human resources.
Douglas Dykes started working at CSU on Dec. 14, while still on probation and seven months after the administration of County Executive Armond Budish filled Dykes’ vacant county position with CSU’s former chief of human resources, Jesse Drucker.
A Cleveland State spokeswoman has yet to respond to questions posed Thursday by The Plain Dealer and cleveland.com about whether the university advertised the position for which Dykes was hired and how many candidates in addition to Dykes applied.
The university hired Dykes as its number-two human resources position because he is a talented HR professional, with experience in talent development and management, said Alison Bibb-Carson, CSU’s executive director of marketing and communications. He’s also a CSU alum, she said.
Asked about his criminal record, Bibb-Carson said: “We believe in providing talented people second chances.”
Dykes resigned from the county in January 2020, days after he quietly repaid the county more than $10,000 he was accused of stealing as part of the corruption probe.
At the time, he was under indictment on a felony charge of theft-in-office, among other charges, related to his converting a $13,500 moving expense perk for a county IT official into a $15,000 signing bonus.
Last summer, prosecutors dropped the felony charge in exchange for Dykes pleading guilty to two misdemeanor counts of obstructing official business. He also vowed to cooperate in the ongoing criminal investigation of the Budish administration, which is now heavily centered on problems at the county jail.
Dykes was sentenced to 90 days in jail on each count, but the jail time was suspended and he was placed on probation for two years.
As second-in-command of CSU’s human resources, Dykes answers to chief human resources officer Jeanell Hughes, Bibb-Carson said.
Drucker held CSU’s top HR position, chief human resources officer, from September 2012 to December 2017. When he held that role, he also had the title of “associate vice president,” his resume states.
After leaving CSU, Drucker served as senior director for enterprise workforce relations at University of California, Irvine until May, when Budish appointed him as the county’s top HR official.
Drucker’s appointment filled the vacancy left open when Dykes resigned.
After he left the county, Dykes worked in 2020 for Cleveland health-care center Neighborhood Family Practice, as vice president of human resources and chief diversity officer, according to his resume, obtained by cleveland.com from CSU.