Covington has hired a new city manager and when Leigh Anne Knight officially takes over, she’ll be the first female city manager in Covington’s history.
We’re proud to see Covington and Newton County continue to take steps forward in diversifying its workforce and leadership, and we’re proud to see solid leaders step up to the forefront.
There was a lot of discussion leading up to Knight’s appointment, but at the end of the day, none of the council members seemed to have serious concerns about her ability to do the job of city manager.
Knight has served as the city’s finance director for nearly four years and during that time, has gradually increased her responsibilities to the point where she oversaw 21 employees across four different departments. She obviously knows the ins and outs of the city’s $120-million-plus budget, which will come in handy as this area continues to pull out of the mire that is the current economy.
In the end, council members got over any perceived conflict of interest issues. While it’s far from a scientific study, based on our online poll, a slight majority of readers did not think there were serious conflict of interest issues (237 votes compared to 219).
We think Knight was a solid choice, and she’ll surely benefit from former city manager Steve Horton’s willingness to help her (or any other candidate who had been chosen) transition into the job during the next 12-18 months. Horton served as police chief and public works director in addition to city manager and should be a great resource for Knight.
She’s got a big learning curve and a tough task ahead of her, but, as for all of us, if she’s willing to put in the time and effort, she can succeed in the job.
We wish her nothing but the best and hope that she’ll be just the latest Covington city manager to have a long-tenured career full of success.