New town manager selected

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John D. Ward of Vernon has been appointed as Granby’s new town manager, effective July 13. Ward will replace William F. Smith, Jr. who retired after 39 years.
Ward has served as chief administrative officer for the Town of Vernon since January 2009. His responsibilities were very much the same as a town manager except he reported to the mayor and not a council or board of selectmen. He previously served on the Vernon Town Council and Board of Education. He was a practicing attorney from 1992 to 2008, specializing in labor relations and worker compensation law. He received his J.D. from Western New England College School of Law and is currently working on his master in public administration degree from the University of Connecticut.
Some of Ward’s accomplishments include: overseeing the renovation of old mills for reuse in Vernon, renovations of a new senior center, administration of many grants and municipal bonds for capital improvement, and implementation of the merger of the Town and Board of Education IT departments.
First Selectman B. Scott Kuhnly and the Board of Selectmen were impressed with Ward’s experience in Connecticut municipal government, his knowledge of contract administration, human resources, risk management and purchasing experience as a chief administrative officer, and his effort to consolidate services with the board of education to improve efficiencies such as facility and IT services. He is also very active in regional organizations such as the Capitol Region Council of Governments (CRCOG), Council of Small Towns (COST), Connecticut Conference of Municipalities (CCM) and serves as the President of the Connecticut Town and City Manager Association.
The executive search firm of Randi Frank Consulting, LLC assisted with the recruitment process, winnowing the field of 24 candidates to nine that the Board of Selectmen reviewed. The Board then interviewed the top three,  unanimously selecting Ward to proceed in the process.