The North Wilkesboro Board of Commissioners unanimously voted Thursday night to hire Wilson Hooper of Charlotte as the town’s new town manager.
Also, Interim Town Manager Ed Evans announced the hiring of Meredith Honeycutt Detsch of Charleston, S.C., as the new town planner.
Hooper is expected to start in his new position on July 29 and Detsch on Aug. 1. Details on their compensation weren’t immediately available.
Rockingham County native
A native of Rockingham County, Hooper has worked for the City of Charlotte for a little over 12 years, including the first 10 as assistant to the city manager/business manager.
Hooper has been visitor information specialist with the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority, a division of the City of Charlotte, since May. He worked in the city’s Finance department/Charlotte Procurement Division for nearly two years starting in April 2017.
He has a bachelor of arts degree in political science and history from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a master’s degree in public administration from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.
Hooper said Thursday that he wanted to be a town manager in western North Carolina, where his wife is from.
“She had me scouring the listings for one in this area. I was very fortunate that the North Wilkesboro opportunity came up and you all chose me. I look forward to being here,” said Hooper, who attended the town board meeting Thursday night.
He said North Wilkesboro has two things that people in his profession look for: a thoughtful board and an engaged and loyal staff. “With hard work and a little moxie, we can accomplish great things together,” he added.
Hooper is married and has two children, ages 6 and 1.
Evans has been interim town manager since March 1. Larry South resigned as manager on Feb. 19.
Evans announced that Meredith Detsch of Charleston, S.C., had accepted the town’s offer for the position of North Wilkesboro town planner. He called Detsch “the best candidate I ever interviewed for any position.”
Detsch, currently the town planner in Summerville, S.C., didn’t attend the town board meeting Thursday night. According to her LinkedIn page, Detsch has been employed by Summerville since 2017. Prior to that, she was a planner for the City of Gastonia starting in 2013.
Detsch has a bachelor of science degree in geography and planning and a master of public administration degree in public management from Appalachian State University. She is a North Carolina native and graduated from Rocky Mount High School. She is married.
Samuel G. “Sam” Hinnant resigned as the town’s director of planning and community development on Nov. 1, 2018. Kelly Coffey of the High Country Council of Governments has served as interim planning director, working about two days a week, since then.