Assistant Town Manager Nicole Ard has accepted a position as city manager in Sandusky, Ohio. Her last day with the Town of Hillsborough was Friday, Dec. 16.
“Not only have we lost a key position in the town due to the reduction of force that took place in the fiscal year 2012 budget, we’ve also lost an excellent assistant town manager who provided amazing customer service to the citizens of Hillsborough,” Town Manager Eric Peterson said. “There is no doubt that Hillsborough’s loss will be Sandusky’s gain as they have just hired an exceptionally dedicated, fair and professional person to be their new city manager.”
A farewell reception in Ard’s honor was held Friday, Dec. 16, in the Town Barn.
“I have appreciated the opportunity to serve Historic Hillsborough, a great town manager and Town Board, and a fantastic, hard-working staff,” Ard said. “Their support—as well as support from community members, businesses and nonprofits—made Hillsborough a wonderful place to call home”
Ard, who also served as Hillsborough’s public works director, began working for the town in October 2007. She supervises the planning, utilities, public works, fire inspections and fleet maintenance operations. In addition, she serves as the acting manager in the town manager’s absence.
Her position was slated to be eliminated in January due to budget cuts for the current fiscal year, which started in July. The town’s Reduction in Force Policy allows employees in good standing to serve an additional six months if a position is eliminated.
Effective at 5 p.m. Friday, Dec. 16, Public Works Supervisor Ken Hines began serving as interim Public Works director. Ard’s other supervisory duties will be reabsorbed by the town manager, with the exception of fire inspections, which will be supervised by the planning director.
Ard began work Tuesday, Dec. 27, in Sandusky, a Great Lakes port and tourism community of more than 25,000, with a population of 112,000 within a 15-mile radius. The city is located on the southern shore of Lake Erie, midway between Cleveland and Toledo. It has been ranked by Site Selection Magazine as the 25th best small town in the nation for corporate expansion activity and was on Fortune Magazine’s 2011 list of “100 Great Things about America” and Forbes’ 2011 list of affordable places to live.
“I am honored and excited to work with the City Commission, staff and community to help fulfill their goals and to continue to advance Sandusky, Ohio, as a great place to live, play and do business,” Ard said.
She will oversee Sandusky’s day-to-day city operations, including traditional municipal services; a utilities system; a 5-acre nursery and city greenhouse; more than 113 miles of city-owned and maintained streets; a nine-hole golf course; and more than 265 acres of parkland with waterfront parks, piers and a marina. There are 218 employees.