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Posted: August 7, 2013 11:47 a.m.

Covington hires new finance director

Covington has hired a new finance director to replace Leigh Anne Knight, who was appointed city manager earlier this year.

William Randall "Randy" Smith comes from Peachtree City, where he was the city’s accounting manager, and has the governmental finance and accounting background the city was seeking, according to Personnel Director Ronnie Cowan.

"He has previous work experience in banking, finance and auditing. Mr. Smith possesses the demeanor, character, and prior experience that the city was seeking in filling the responsibilities (of finance director)," Cowan said in an email.

The salary range for this position is $66,706 -$98,675, Cowan said, and Smith will make $93,912 based on his education, experience and credentials. His first day will be Aug. 26.

"After several interviews with Mr. Smith, his willingness to work and do whatever was necessary was apparent, and those qualities are much needed in our government today," Knight said in an email.

Having served in the position for nearly four years, Knight knows the finance director position well.

"I believe the most important duty of the finance director is the fiduciary responsibility to customers and citizens for the finances of the government. This is a rather broad duty, but if someone understands and upholds their fiduciary responsibility for the finances, the other daily, weekly and monthly tasks seem to fall into place," Knight said. "Obviously attention to detail, trustworthiness and (being a) hard worker are character traits that I believe are vital to the successful candidate."

The city received 15 total applications, and seven candidates met the minimum job qualifications, Cowan said. The city ended up interviewing six of them and selected two finalists. One finalist withdrew his/her name from consideration, and the city selected Smith, Cowan said. Smith has a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Georgia and is a certified public accountant.

He had worked in Peachtree City since April 2012, where he managed the accounting department and worked with payroll, utility billing and the city’s annual audit, according to his city application.

“Randy is very knowledgeable, very competent. He gets along really well with the other folks in the office; we’ll really miss him,” said Paul Salvatore, financial services director for Peachtree City. “He was nominated supervisor of the quarter by his peers, the other director and chiefs, who recognized his talent and abilities. We’re happy for him; he deserves this career advancement but will be a real loss for us. Covington made an excellent choice in offering him that position up there.”

Smith previously worked as the chief financial officer at Enterprise Banking Co. in McDonough for nearly four years, as a senior accountant with the accounting firm Land and Associates in Ellijay for two years, and as a senior auditor with accounting firm Moore and Cubbedge in Marietta for three years. He frequently worked on government audits at previous jobs.

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