September 20, 2019

Town’s longtime finance director to retire

Susan Lamb

Susan Lamb

Susan Lamb leaving
after 20 years

By Jess Wisloski

Observer staff

A longtime member of the Williston administrative leadership announced her planned departure this week, according to a release from Town Manager Richard McGuire’s office.

Finance Director Susan Lamb will be retiring after more than 20 years of service to the community, the release stated, and will be leaving her role near the end of September.

“Susan Lamb is leaving large shoes to fill,” said McGuire, in the release. “Susan has an incredible wealth of institutional knowledge but more importantly, her compassion for employees and her attention to the financial details of the town is a mix that has been invaluable to our organization,” he said.

“I have enjoyed working with her and wish her the best,” he added.

Lamb started working for the town in 1995 as a part-time accountant and was eventually hired as the full-time finance director a year later, starting in 1996.

When asked about her time working for Williston, Lamb said she thought the town was well run and is on good financial footing, which should make the transition to a new finance director easier. The past year saw a budgetary surplus, with reserves exceeding the usual target of 10 to 20 percent, and rising to 23 percent (about $2.4 million in total) of the entire operating budget. This coming fiscal year’s $10.4 million budget boosted spending by 4.5 percent, to level out the “fund balance,” which is the term the town uses for the pool of reserves that provides a cushion against unexpected expenses. The balance largely came from rising revenue from the local option sales tax, a 1 percent levy the town tacks onto the state sales tax, the Observer reported in December.

Lamb said one of the more enjoyable parts of her service has been working with the staff and elected officials. She noted the town’s population has more than double in size since she began working in the town manager’s office and that the town’s staff and organization has grown in response.

Recruitment for the candidate to follow in her footsteps has already begun, McGuire said in the release. Deadline for applications is July 15.

“The plan is to have the new finance director on board before Susan leaves,” he said. Candidates must hold a bachelor’s degree in accounting, finance, business or other appropriate discipline and have at least three years of relevant technical and administrative experience ideally with advanced studies in business or public administration, or comparable experience. A job description, as well as a profile of the position and the desired characteristics, skills and abilities is available on the town’s website at town.williston.vt.us, under the General Information menu.

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