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MEN OF NEWTON 2021: John King
John King
John King - photo by Special to The News

John King is a lifelong citizen of Covington where he was born and raised. He is currently the assistant city manager for the city of Covington where he proudly serves his home community. 

It was a long, winding road that began when King was home visiting from the Navy. He was close to finishing six years with the Navy when he and his family were eating at El Charro.

Frank Turner Sr., the city manager at the time and one of King’s role models approached the table.  

King gave a joking declaration that day that has become more of a prophecy as the years have passed. 

“I always admired Mr. Turner,” King recalled. “He came and asked me, ‘What are you going to do when you get out?’ I responded, ‘I think I’ll come back and be city manager.’ I wasn’t really serious at the time but, as you get older you look at things differently.” 

King’s time with the city began back in 2011. 

He started working part-time at the airport as well as the fire department. King was then promoted to Airport Manager in 2017. In 2020, King was named the Street Department manager in addition to managing the airport. 

Throughout all of his positions, King has abided by a famous quote he considers his professional philosophy. 

“A lot of people think the customer is No. 1, but it’s your people who are No. 1. If you take care of them, they’ll take care of the customer.” 

As a Covington native, King graduated from Newton County Comprehensive High School in 1991. He then went on to finish two years at Georgia College in Milledgeville and served in the Navy for six years. 

After his stint in the Navy, King went to Eastman in 2004 and received his commercial pilot’s license. He’s also earned a B.S. in Aeronautical Science and M.S. in Management

In addition to his time working for the city, King has been involved in other ways. 

He’s been the chairman for Leadership Newton County as well as past president of the Rotary Club of Newton County. 

King currently resides in Covington with his wife and best friend, Katy. King considers investing in the community the same as investing in himself and the residents who live here. 

And, being from here and still living here with his family, King appreciates what Covington still stands for today. 

“I think we’ve maintained that small town feel,” King said. “But we’ve added more retail, restaurants and entertainment. I think that’s great because it’s bringing people to Covington to see, not just the fun part, but our history as well.”