Originally published Tuesday, August 13, 2019 at 09:26a.m.

WILLIAMS, Ariz. — After nearly a year and a half without a permanent city manager, Williams City Council hired Chase Waggoner to fill the position Aug. 8.

Following Bill Lee’s departure in March 2018, Williams City Finance Director Keith Buonocore acted as Interim City Manager. In July, Buonocore resigned as finance director and the search began for a new city manager and a new finance director.

According to Williams Mayor John Moore, the search for a city manager began with 109 candidates. City Council members conferred and narrowed the field to 12 individuals. After interviews, three candidates were called back for a second interview.

“It was a very strong field, probably stronger than I’ve ever seen,” Moore said.

Waggoner, a former city councilman in Lebanon, Missouri and city administrator in Vandalia, Missouri, came out on top.

Waggoner has 12 years’ experience in municipal and state government as well as non-profit management. He also served as fire chief and director of emergency management in Girard, Kansas.

Moore said Buonocore had been performing the duties of city manager along with the help of city councilmembers and Moore.

“I believe we’ve gotten a lot done this summer, however, it’s important for us to have a city manager to oversee the day to day operations,” Moore said.

According to Moore, Waggoner will officially begin Sept. 1, but will be in Williams Aug. 16-17 to assist with the interviewing of a new finance director.

“I think he will do well and I think people will really like him,” Moore said.

The city of Williams uses a council-manager form of government. The city is governed by a directly elected mayor and six city council members. The council sets policy and directly appoints several staff positions such as the city manager, police chief, finance director and city clerk.

The city manager supervises the administration, business and employment affairs of the city and coordinates operations of the various departments. The manager also represents the city in community and regional matters.

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