Federal Way Mayor Jim Ferrell announced during Tuesday’s meeting that Human Services manager Jay Bennett and interim Finance director Bob Noland are moving on from Federal Way.
Bennett, who’s been with the city since 2012, is heading to Zanesville, Ohio, while Noland, who has been working interim positions for the past decade or so, will head home to Pasco, Wash. to begin his retirement.
“Thank you so much for all your efforts,” Ferrell said to Bennett. “I think our only concern is continuing those programs in the manner in which you’ve shepherded them.”
Bennett explained his reasons for taking a position across the country, saying family was a big motivating factor.
“It’s a town of about 28,000 residents, of which several are my brother, sister, family and life-long friends, and one 8-year-old who carries my name, my grandson,” he said. “The city has come at me a couple of times over the past couple of years, and this year they were able put a package together and, as the Mayor of Zanesville said, ‘I have your grandson.’ I get to go home and be with family and do good work as their public works and community development director.”
Ferrell also thanked Noland, who he said has “shepherded” the city’s finances since previous director Tho Krause left somewhat unexpectedly in October of last year.
Noland said it’s time to get back to Pasco.
“After living in a van down by the river for the last six months, it will be enjoyable to go back to our home in Pasco. The golf course is beckoning me,” he said to a round of laughter from Council members and those in attendance.
Council members thanked Bennett, agreeing that his work was instrumental in recent years as the city transitioned to a “direct entitlement” city in regards to federal Community Development Block Grant funds. All also agreed that Noland did an exemplary job getting a good impression of the city’s finances and what needed to be done during the time the city searched for the new finance director, Adé Ariwoola.