KINGSPORT — The Board of Mayor and Aldermen got its first chance to interact with two of the three candidates vying to be Kingsport's next city manager, gaining some insight into their respective management styles, work experience and noteworthy accomplishments during their careers.
During a special called meeting Thursday afternoon, the entire BMA held hourlong interview sessions with two city manager finalists — Sue McLaughlin (the interim city administrator of Lincoln, Ill.) and Russell Hawes (the former city administrator of Simpsonville, S.C.). Each session was followed by a reception with city employees and the public.
Kingsport has been in the midst of finding its next city manager since John Campbell announced his retirement in December. Campbell, who has been in local government for more than 30 years, will retire effective June 30.
McLaughlin has just over a decade of experience in government management, serving as the interim city administrator of Lincoln, Ill., (pop 14,500) since February 2013. Previously, McLaughlin has been the administrator of Mattoon, North Aurora and Byron, Ill.
According to her cover letter and resume, McLaughlin has a master's of public administration from Northern Illinois University and a bachelor of science from Illinois State University. Her master's thesis was on the cost revenue analysis of annexation.
Following a short reception, the BMA then moved on to the second interview of the evening — Russell Hawes.
According to his resume and cover letter, Hawes holds a master's degree in regional planning and a bachelor's in geography from UNC Chapel Hill and an associate degree in business administration from Lees McRae College. Hawes has 13 years experience in municipal government, most recently in Simpsonville, S.C. (pop 19,000).
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