David M. Smitherman will assume the role of permanent Onslow County Manager. The Onslow County Board of Commissioners appointed Mr. Smitherman to serve as County Manager during a special meeting on November 7, 2023. Mr. Smitherman was initially selected for the Interim County Manager role on September 6 and was sworn in on October 4.
Tim Foster, Chairman of the Onslow County Board of Commissioners, says Mr. Smitherman is the right candidate to lead Onslow County into the future. “David Smitherman brings to this role a wealth of knowledge, experience, and most importantly a love of service. We are excited about this new chapter in the leadership of our wonderful County and look forward to working with him to make Onslow County an even greater place to live, work, and play.”
David Smitherman most recently served as County Manager in Pittsylvania County, Virginia from 2016-2022 and was previously the County Manager for Lee County, North Carolina. Mr. Smitherman has experience in Onslow County as he served as Interim Onslow County Manager in 2009. For 15 years he worked with Bear Strategies as a Senior Consultant and was previously the CEO of Orthovative Technologies, a company he co-founded that managed intellectual property originating from Wake Forest Baptist Health’s Orthopeadic Surgery Department.
Mr. Smitherman says he is ready to make great things happen in Onslow County. “Our employees are exactly the way I remember them fifteen years ago, extremely hard working and wanting to do good things. Onslow County government is in a terrific place because the Board of Commissioners have provided the tools and resources we need for our organization to achieve excellence and I look forward to working with staff at all levels to make that happen.”
Robin Knapp, Vice Chairman of the Onslow County Board of Commissioners, says Mr. Smitherman has already made an impact on the organization during the brief interim period. “It is good to have Mr. Smitherman on board. He has a great handle on things and I look forward to working with him in a team environment to solve any issues that may come forth in our County.”
The position of Onslow County Manager serves as the chief administrator of county government and is responsible for administering all departments. The seven-member Board of Commissioners is responsible for choosing the individual to fill this role. The County Manager’s work includes developing Onslow County’s annual budget and management of nearly 1,300 employees.