Edwards retires, honored by the city


Clinton City Mayor Lew Starling, left, and Pro Mayor Tem Marcus Becton, right, presented outgoing Police Chief Donald Edwards with retirement gifts.

CLINTON – Recently retired Clinton Police Chief Donald Edwards was honored by Clinton City Council upon his retirement, which took effect July 1.

City Manager Tom Hart shared his respect for the outgoing Chief.

“Donald has been a steadfast servant of the city for almost three decades,” Hart said. “Donald really put it on. Donald has always been quick to blame and give credit. I always thought that was the mark of good leadership.

Hart praised Edward’s passion for what he does. Edwards received some farewell gifts after they overdid his weapon and service badge.

“I appreciate the words and appreciate the support you have all shown, not just to me, but to the police department,” Edwards said.

Edwards said those who worked with him were what made his job enjoyable.

“They made my successes so great… successes that I was able to enjoy in my four years (as a chef),” he noted.

Edwards also praised the city’s department heads. He expressed his appreciation for his family, and their sacrifices too.

“I told someone a while ago that no matter what challenges we face, we always had a good time doing it.”

City officials have started the process to find his successor, hiring associates from the Mercer Group to help them find the next leader.

“We use a recruiting company that will help us actively recruit and screen potential candidates,” Hart said previously. “They’re actually the outfit the Council used to hire me.”

Hart arranged for Mercer to make a presentation to keep everyone updated on the process in June. The first step is a job analysis, during which Mercer will conduct interviews with stakeholders to determine the specific needs of the job.

Edwards started as a police officer in 1993 and rose through the ranks to captain in 2012. He received a Bachelor of Science degree from Mount Olive College and successfully completed numerous certification and application training courses. of the law, including the North Carolina Administrative Officer Management Program.

Edwards was appointed acting chief of police when he replaced Jay Tilley, who retired in April 2017.

Deputy Chief Anthony Davis now holds the interim Chief post following Edwards’ departure.

Davis is an 18-year veteran of the department, a graduate of the NC Justice Academy’s Management and Development program and director of the Basic Law Enforcement Training (BLET) program at Sampson Community College.

“We are fortunate to have such a strong command staff who I know can carry out the mission of the police service without wasting time during this transition,” said Edwards.

Edwards had been a chef since 2017 and with the department for over two decades before filling the position.

The cost of the hiring process can vary, Hart said, explaining that the price could range from $ 18,000 to $ 22,000, depending on certain out-of-pocket expenses.

“The cost includes advertising and some other expenses that the city would otherwise incur directly as part of this process,” Hart said. “The agreement is structured so that we pay as we go for the services provided. “

Once the publicity is over, they will begin to sift through applicants and identify the most promising applicants. Then a shortlist will be created, consisting of the five to seven most qualified applicants, with continuous selection and reduction.

This will include references, education level, criminal records, credit report, work history, and a social media and internet check. From there, the interviews will then be arranged by Mercer, whose staff will provide city officials with a file on each interviewee along with questions for the interview. Mercer can also help negotiate the employment contract.

“There are a lot of good people involved,” Hart said. “And that will give us more active recruiting. “

Lisa Ward of Mercer Group Associates will be the research project leader. She has a wide range of stories, including everything from military service to human resources. David Deutsch will act as a project consultant. Deutsch was a career city manager with over 40 years of experience. Ellis Hankins will serve as project advisor. He is a county and municipal attorney and a visiting professor at several colleges.

Contact Emily M. Williams at 910-590-9488. Follow her on Twitter at @NCNewsWriter. Follow us on Twitter at @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.


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