Frank Bottorff, a former base commanding officer at Cherry Point, has been hired as Havelock’s new city manager.
Mayor Jimmy Sanders made the announcement Tuesday morning.
“The board has worked hard on this for a number of months and I think they’ve done a good job,” Sanders said. “I’m pleased. We had some very good candidates and Frank prevailed.”
Bottorff, a retired colonel with 28 years in the Marine Corps, was chosen from a group of 51 applicants. Bottorff served as commanding officer at Cherry Point from 2006 to 2009.
“I’m extremely excited and honored to be a part of the team in Havelock,” Bottorff said. “We’ve been part of the community for a number of years now, and I certainly feel honored that the Board of Commissioners had enough faith in me to hire me for this position, and I’m really looking forward to it and can’t wait to get to work.”
Commissioners are expected to vote to officially hire Bottorff at their meeting on Monday.
“I think it was a very good selection,” Sanders said of Bottorff. “He’s not only familiar with Havelock, but probably more importantly he’s intimately familiar with the military and with the needs of the military and how the military functions.”
Sanders said that Bottorff’s knowledge in this area would be greatly beneficial to a city tied so closely with a military base.
“I certainly think that I bring a perspective that potentially a lot of other candidates did not bring,” Bottorff said. “I do think that the experience I had with installation management within the Marine Corps really forms nicely into the city management position in Havelock, but the experience I had with the military and understanding the importance of what Cherry Point and FRC East brings to the community, I think I’m in a good position to really focus our efforts to try to help sustain that in our community and then take the next steps that go beyond that and really help Havelock with economic development.”
Sanders said Bottorff would help the city in the nation’s capital.
“He just has far and away more contacts, friendships, relationships, throughout the military in D.C. and all those kinds of things with his background as a former base commander,” he said. “He understands what’s real and what’s not, and a lot of times when you are dealing with issues, that’s important.”
Bottorff said he has been working since his retirement in a consulting firm helping the Marine Corps improve installations.
“My hands have been in it. The company has treated me really well for the last year and a half,” he said. “This transition is not about the money, but having a job and really being able to provide for my family and doing it in a place that is our home is the best of all worlds.”
Bottorff has been working with Allies for Cherry Point’s Tomorrow and is a voting member of the North Carolina Military Advisory Council.
“From that perspective, he brings a wealth of experience to the table,” Sanders said. “He understands managing people and programs.”
Bottorff’s annual salary will be $111,808. He will be replacing Jim Freeman, who retired earlier this year but stayed on as interim manager until a new manager was hired. Bottorff will begin work on Nov. 12 and will work with Freeman during a transitional period.
“I look forward to the transition with Jim Freeman,” Bottorff said. “He’s done so much for this community and for the city of Havelock. My hat’s off to Jim on a tremendous career and I just look forward to a very smooth and transparent transition.”
Sanders said the transitional period would last at least through Dec. 2, saying there was no set date for Freeman’s last day.
According to a release from the city, Bottorff has years of experience with budgeting and fiscal planning, project management and strategic planning. He has a degree in business administration from LaSalle University and a Masters in Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College.
Bottorff is married and lives in Carolina Pines. He has a son that is a sophomore in engineering at N.C. State and a second son who is a junior at Havelock High School.