Red Bank starts city manager interviews today

Red Bank starts city manager interviews today

November 21st, 2011 by Kate Belz in News

Jim Folkner, 59

Jim Folkner, 59

Photo by Tim Barber /Times Free Press.


The first four interviews of candidates for Red Bank city manager will be held at Red Bank Fire Station 2 at 4851 Dayton Blvd.

Interview schedule:

• 1 p.m. - Randy Fairbanks

• 1:45 p.m. - Jim Folkner

• 2:30 p.m. - Marty Von Schaaf

• 3:15 p.m. - Mark Matthews

Four of the five Red Bank city manager candidates will be on the hot seat today as the city's Board of Commissioners begins job interviews for the post.

Mayor Monty Millard said commissioners have compiled a list of sample questions from the Tennessee Municipal League, but each commissioner also is coming up with a list of queries.

The commission seeks to replace Chris Dorsey, who was Red Bank's manager for six years until the commission abruptly voted him out 3-2 in early October.

Millard said he is looking for someone who can oversee the city's $5 million budget and its 75 employees. But he is especially keen to bring in someone with business savvy and marketing skills.

"I want to have someone who will actively and aggressively promote our city," he said. "I'm looking for someone who can convince me they are willing to do what's necessary to take our city to the next level."

Most candidates have more business experience than government experience, according to their resumes.

Jim Folkner, who spearheaded the effort to recall Chattanooga Mayor Ron Littlefield, highlighted 28 years in local real estate development and business.

Randy Fairbanks, a CPA who owns Fairbanks Bookkeeping & Tax Service, cited more than 20 years overseeing accounting in five companies before starting his own business. He previously ran for Hamilton County trustee.

Marty Von Schaaf, head of the Hamilton County Republican Party, attached reference letters from Hamilton County Mayor Jim Coppinger; state Sen. Bo Watson, R-Chattanooga; and County Commissioners Jim Fields and Joe Graham.

But his resume also lists no direct government experience; he currently works as a client adviser for BMW of Chattanooga after previously holding posts at Aflac Insurance as account executive and at Marshal Mize Ford as manager.

Of the four, veteran Red Bank Fire Chief Mark Matthews has racked up the most time - 36 years - serving in a municipal post. But the lifetime firefighter lists no business credentials.

The commission will interview its one nonlocal applicant, Randall Hemann, of Salisbury, N.C., Nov. 30.

Hemann has served 15 years as the executive director of Downtown Salisbury Inc., working to revitalize the town after serving in redevelopment posts with two other cities.