The Stanly News and Press (Albemarle, NC)

October 12, 2012

Board picks first female mayor

by Ian Faulkner

Friday, October 12, 2012 — Norwood’s Town Council met in a special session Tuesday night for the purpose of appointing a new mayor.

Former Mayor Harry Beeker stepped down at last Tuesday night’s meeting, citing personal reasons for his resignation.

As Tuesday’s meeting began, a motion was made to make Town Administra-tor Dwight Smith the acting chairman of the board of commissioners so that the board could move forward with appointing a new mayor. As acting chairman, Smith welcomed nominations to the position of mayor.

Commissioner Henry Thompson nominated Mayor Pro-Tem Beverly Johnson. Commissioner Darrell Almond seconded the motion.

With a unanimous vote, Johnson was appointed to the position of mayor of Norwood and subsequently swore in by a notary public.

“I would like to publicly thank Harry Beeker for all of the service he did,” Johnson said.

“His shoes will be hard to fill. I need the support of everyone here on the council. Our main concern is to work together for the people of this town. I will say that I will try and be available when the phone rings.”

Mayors resign so infrequently that Smith had to look up the procedure in a manual for the UNC School of Government. Typically, the board of commissioners makes nominations for a new mayor, and more often than not the mayor pro-tem is appointed to the office. However, the mayor pro-tem does not have to accept the appointment.

Johnson will serve in the capacity as mayor until the elections in November 2013.

Johnson was the first woman to serve on the Norwood Town Council. Additionally, Johnson is the first female to serve as mayor of Norwood.

“I’m just proud to represent Norwood. I’ve lived here my whole life. The position of mayor is not a man or a woman’s job, but rather a public servant. I appreciate the support and encouragement from board members and the citizens of Norwood,” Johnson said.

“I love Norwood and appreciate the opportunity to serve.”

At the next meeting, the council will discuss the appointment of another council member and another mayor pro-tem.

As the meeting came to a close, the council extended a special thanks to Finance Director Virgil Hinson for all of his hard work and dedication to his post.

The next regularly scheduled town meeting will be Nov. 5.

To submit story ideas, contact Ian Faulkner at or (704) 982-2121 ext. 21.