GALAX, Va. (WFXR) — During a special meeting on Tuesday, the Galax City Council unanimously approved the appointment of Matthew Lee Settlemyer as the new city manager.
“We are glad to welcome Mr. Settlemyer to our community and look forward to his leadership of the City workforce and in the implementation of the Council’s vision for the community,” said Mayor Willie Greene. “City Council was impressed by his knowledge, experience, and demeanor and believes that Matt will be an excellent fit for Galax and the region. We are gaining a credentialed manager with a track record of achievement in community development, financial planning, grant writing and project management.”
This announcement comes after the Galax City Council — assisted by The Berkley Group out of Bridgewater — conducted a national search for a new city manager. City officials say The Berkley Group received 35 applications, interviewed 15 candidates, and then helped select five finalists for interviews with the city council.
Settlemyer — who has more than 25 years of experience working in local government — will replace Keith Barker, who is retiring after 29 years serving the City of Galax, including 12 years as city manager.
The City of Galax says Settlemyer received a Bachelor of Arts degree, with distinction, from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill in political science, as well as a Masters of Public Administration degree from Appalachian State University.
During the early part of his career, Settlemyer served as a solid waste/recycling director, public works director, and town manager in several communities in North Carolina. He also served as the Town Manager of Drexel, N.C. from 2003 to 2012; the Town Manager of Black Mountain, N.C. from 2012 to 2019; and and the Town Manager of Mocksville, N.C. from 2018 to 2020.
In addition, Settlemyer is not only a Credentialed Manager by the International City/County Management Association (ICMA), but he was active in community organizations in the towns where he previously served.
“I am honored to continue my career as a public servant in the beautiful City of Galax. I was attracted to the City by its record of good governance under the Council/Manager model and its commitment to regional collaboration, transparency, and citizen trust,” said Settlemyer about his appointment. “I appreciated the confidence that Council has shown in me. I am excited to collaborate with the City Council and employees to serve the citizens of Galax.”
Settlemyer is set to assume his duties as Galax City Manager on July 1.