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Council names finalists for city manager
Decision expected at December meeting
2. City manager finalist Headley

Council members have named two finalists for Dawsonville's newly created city manager position.

The names of David Headley, Dawson County's former public works director, and Andrew Thompson, capital programs manager for the city of Sandy Springs, were released Monday afternoon.

Dawsonville Mayor James Grogan said a third candidate was initially considered as a finalist for the job but opted to withdraw his name, citing family responsibilities.

Of the more than 25 applicants, four men were interviewed by a committee made up of Grogan, Mayor Pro-tem Angie Smith and Councilman Caleb Phillips.

The four-member council interviewed Headley in the closed portion of Monday night's meeting.

Headley, a Forsyth County resident, previously served as Dawson County's director of public works from 2005 until earlier this summer. He also spent 22 years with Brevard County Government in various management positions and is a U.S. Marine Corps veteran.

He holds an associate's degree in civil engineering theory and principles from Ferrum College and a bachelor of science in civil engineering from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

Thompson, of Canton, has been Sandy Springs' capital programs manager since 2006. He also spent four years as a project manager-engineer with the Georgia Department of Transportation and is a 15-year state certified firefighter.

He holds a master's of public administration with an emphasis on government from Kennesaw State University and a bachelor of science in mechanical engineering technology from Southern Polytechnic State University.

Grogan said Thompson would be interviewed later this week.

According to the employment ad, the city sought applicants who possess a bachelor's degree in courses related to local government or extensive government experience, along with supervisory and management know-how.

Good interpersonal, oral and written communication skills are also required, as is thorough knowledge of state statutes and codes, federal guidelines and protocols and local ordinances related to municipalities.

Duties, according to the city's online job bank, show the manager as a liaison between the mayor and city council, city employees and citizens, who will manage daily operations of nine employees, oversee financial management and purchasing of a current $4.1 million budget, represent the city in intergovernmental relations that promote tourism and growth, assist with planning and zoning activities and oversee major projects.

The pay, commiserate with experience, will range from $60,000 to 90,000 annually.

Grogan said hiring a manager would free him up to concentrate on "bigger" city projects.

"With the ever changing climate of the business in Dawsonville and the need to try to get ahead of the game, I feel like we need to hire a city manager to help with the day-to-day activities," he said. "It's been increasingly harder to maintain all the projects that we have planned for the future."

The position was advertised across the state through the Georgia Municipal Association, ACCG, an organization for county government, and the Georgia Mountain Regional Commission.

The council is expected to vote on the matter during its Dec. 7 meeting.