Rodney Newton to serve as interim Victoria town manager

Published 6:08 pm Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Rodney Newton will begin a six-month stint as interim Victoria town manager effective Feb. 1.

After that, “We’ll see,” he said.

Until then, Newton will learn the ropes and work with the current interim manager, J.A. Dayton, who came out of retirement to assume the position.

Word of Newton’s hiring drew immediate praise.

“He is a remarkable individual, full of accomplishments, abilities and energy,” said Robert Clement, Lunenburg County commonwealth’s attorney and the Victoria town attorney.

“Victoria can expect great things from him. We are very lucky to get him.”

A look at Rodney Newton

Rodney Newton is chief of the Victoria Fire and Rescue Department and administrator of the Kenbridge Rescue Squad.

He was hired in September to oversee a reorganization of the Kenbridge squad. A joint statement by the Kenbridge Town Council and Lunenburg County Board of Supervisors announcing the move said Newton’s duties include reinstatement of its 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status, revision of its by-laws, increasing membership, improving call response times, implementing financial policies and retaining grants from the state.

“Most of the big stuff has been taken care of,” Newton recently said. “It’s just the day-to-day operation.”

In November, Victoria Town Council voted following a closed session to offer the position of town manager to its top candidate and charged member Greg Elam to negotiate the contract, but that apparently fell through.

Former Town Manager Ken Patterson gave the town 15 years, serving first as a police officer before becoming town manager. He left his position as town manager in August.

Patterson and Donnie Neblett, the recently retired Kenbridge Town Manager, were co-grand marshals of the Lunenburg Christmas Parade, with organizers noting, “the committee felt that these men deserved this recognition for their commitment and dedication to their towns and Lunenburg County.”