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City fends off job vacancies

Plans are underway to replace several key positions within the city of Albemarle, including its police chief.

Police Chief Danny Bowen is set to retire in five months, prompting the city to begin soliciting for applicants. The city just recently hired an assistant manager who begins employment next week. Along with Bowen’s impending retirement, the city is faced with searching for a new human resources manager and director of utilities.

“You hate to lose people, but you also have to look at it as an opportunity for new people, too,” said Michael Ferris, Albemarle city manager.

Ferris said he plans to assemble a panel of professionals to sift through chosen candidates for the position of police chief. Among those candidates could be a high ranking officer promoted from within the police department, as in the case for Bowen who first served as interim chief before getting the official promotion.

However, the city’s police department is braced to lose at least two other captains to retirement before Bowen’s departure. Capt. John Griffith retires in December and Capt. Kelly Williams retires in February.