Woodruff’s the one!

Published 1:22 am Wednesday, July 6, 2011

By a 6-1 vote, Randell K. Woodruff was hired as Beaufort County manager

The Beaufort County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday voted 6-1 to hire Randell K. Woodruff as the new manager of Beaufort County’s governmental operations effective Sept. 5.

Randell K. Woodruff

Jim Chrisman will continue to serve as assistant county manager until Woodruff takes control, board Chairman Jerry Langley announced.

Commissioner Jay McRoy cast the sole dissenting vote.

McRoy indicated he did not have a problem with Woodruff serving as county manager, but he preferred another candidate.
“I have no problem with this fellow,” McRoy said after the vote. “I just preferred one of the other candidates. I will work with him and do anything I can to make him successful.”

Woodruff is manager of Camden County.

“He has experience, a good personality, good interpersonal skills and, most of all, experience in eastern North Carolina,” said Commissioner Al Klemm in an interview after the vote. “I hope he’s very successful.”

As county manager, Woodruff will oversee a general-fund budget of approximately $50 million and, currently, 288 full-time employees along with a countywide water enterprise budget of approximately $5 million with 25 full-time employees.

A telephone call to Woodruff was not returned by deadline for today’s edition.

Woodruff succeeds former County Manager Paul Spruill, who resigned in April to accept a position with Tideland Electric Membership Corp. He began the new job Tuesday.

Under terms of Woodruff’s contract, approved by the commissioners as part of the vote to hire him, Woodruff will be paid an annual base salary of $110,000 or a monthly salary of $9,166.66 in installments at the same time other county employees are paid. When Woodruff earns a master’s degree in public administration, he will receive a salary increase of $5,000, according to the contract.

Spruill was paid an annual salary of $135,000 under terms of a contract approved in July 2009, up from the $103,604 he received in the final year of his previous contract.

Woodruff has served as Camden County manager since 2003.

With a population of 9,980, according to the 2010 census, Camden County’s population is about one-fourth that of Beaufort County.

Camden County is located in northeastern North Carolina about 40 minutes west of the Outer Banks and south of the Hampton Roads, Va., metropolitan area. The county is generally seen as a bedroom community for those neighboring areas.

The per-capita income for Camden County is listed at $24,639, slightly higher than the state average and slightly higher than that of Beaufort County.

Camden County is governed by a five-member Board of Commissioners.

There are no municipalities in Camden County although a small portion of Elizabeth City extends over the Pasquotank River onto the Camden Causeway, or U.S. Highway 158.

During his tenure in Camden County, Woodruff has focused on developing the county’s infrastructure, including construction of a new wastewater system, expansion of the capacity of the county’s sewage treatment plant and construction of a new elementary school, among other activities, according to a biography supplied by Beaufort County’s leaders.

He was also cited for being heavily involved in the county’s efforts to prevent the Navy from locating an outlying landing field, or OLF, in the county and the discussion leading to Camden County becoming a unified government in 2006. As a unified government, the county has some powers of a city.

Before accepting the post as Camden County manager, Woodruff worked in Sanford in Lee County, overseeing that county’s Department of Youth and Family Services and under the supervision of County Manager William Cowan, according to Woodruff’s biography.

Previously, he worked for the N.C. Division of Adult Probation and Parole in Lee County for about 12 years as the chief probation officer and an adult probation officer.

Woodruff earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Atlantic Christian College, now Barton College, in 1983. He is seeking a master’s degree in public administration at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Va., having completed seven of 13 required graduate courses in the program.

His biography lists his participation in the Camden Economic Development Commission, the Pasquotank-Camden EMS Board, the Pasquotank-Camden Solid Waste Commission, the Camden Senior Services Board and the Albemarle Regional Jail Commission. His biography also lists membership in the Rotary Club of Elizabeth City.