Albemarle County Executive Tom Foley today announced his resignation from the County effective February 1, 2017, to assume the position of County Administrator for Stafford County. Foley makes his announcement after 17 and a half years of service with Albemarle, 11 as Deputy County Executive and the last six of those years as County Executive.
“It has been an honor to serve Albemarle County’s citizens for the past 17 years, and I am particularly grateful to the dedicated and professional county employees and members of the Board of Supervisors that I have worked with since 1999,” said Foley in announcing his resignation. “While I look forward to new opportunities and challenges in Stafford, I am proud of what we have accomplished together for our community and I appreciate the support and partnership I have received from a wide variety of colleagues during my tenure with the County.”
Mr. Foley has 28 years of local government experience. In addition to his tenure at Albemarle County, he also served eight years as a County Administrator in two other Virginia counties. In his new position, Foley will assume leadership of a $516M operation with approximately 900 employees.
During his tenure with the County, Foley led organizational change efforts to improve services and efficiency including, creation of the County’s Fire Rescue Department and Office of Economic Development and the consolidation of three departments into the current Department of Community Development. In addition, he led efforts to increase the organization’s focus on high performance principles through the initiation of strategic planning, multi-year financial planning and employee engagement and leadership development.
“We have been so fortunate to have Tom in key leadership roles for this organization over the last 17 years. His leadership style, raising the performance bar for county operations, coupled with support and training for staff have invigorated the County as One Organization. He embodies the County’s mission statement, to provide the highest service within prudent use of taxpayer dollars,” said Board of Supervisor member Ann Mallek, who has the longest tenure working with Foley as County Executive.
“Tom has guided the County through challenging economic times and helped the Board of Supervisors to understand how to operate in the “new Normal.” His comment, repeated over many years, that we need a new approach if we want a new result, has frequently come to mind as the Board wrestles with the evolution of government processes to benefit our citizens. He has skillfully managed a complex organization and met diverse community needs and challenges while continuing to encourage organizational excellence and efficiency. Tom’s leadership has helped to enable the County to become one of the most respected and financially sound governmental units in the country as evidenced by Albemarle’s rare triple, AAA bond rating. We wish him well and will endeavor to build on the legacy he has built in Albemarle”, said Mallek.
The Board of Supervisors is responsible for the hiring of Foley’s successor and will begin the process for procuring an executive search firm to conduct a national search immediately. The Board is pleased to announce the appointment of Doug Walker, Deputy County Executive, to serve as acting County Executive effective February 1, 2017. Prior to being hired by Albemarle in 2013, Walker served as County Administrator in Shenandoah County. He also served previously as the City Manager of Waynesboro and as Deputy County Administrator in Spotsylvania County.
“While we are very sorry for Tom’s departure and wish him the best in his new position, we feel extremely fortunate to have someone with Doug’s experience to serve as acting County Executive,” said Board Chair Liz Palmer. “We have the utmost confidence in Doug’s ability to lead the organization and continue our focus on strategic priorities during this time of transition.”