04/05/06 — New Pikeville administrator taking over April 17

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New Pikeville administrator taking over April 17

By Turner Walston
Published in News on April 5, 2006 1:54 PM

PIKEVILLE -- Pikeville's new administrator will begin work April 17.

Robert Buchanan replaces Lonnie Graves, who had been the town's administrator since December 2002. Graves stepped down Jan. 27.

Buchanan had been working in Guatemala City, Guatemala, as the vice president of Technical Services for Koramsa SA, a clothing manufacturer.

Buchanan's brother, William, is a Wayne County magistrate.

"He has deep ties with Wayne County, and that's the only reason we were able to get him," Pikeville Mayor Herb Sieger said.

A U.S. Navy veteran, Buchanan earned a bachelor's degree in industrial technology from Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, Tenn., in 1971.

Buchanan served as city manager in Shelbyville, Tenn., until 2000.

"We just think we're very fortunate to get a man of his qualifications to come to our town," Sieger said.

When Buchanan arrives, he will find a new office at Town Hall.

"We're renovating the office to give him some privacy," Sieger said. "His office and mine will be in the same office, and we just felt that he needed a place where if he needed to talk to someone privately, or anyone could talk with him privately without people walking back and forth, that he could do that."

Sieger said the town reviewed applications from about 25 people, "all of whom were very well-qualified." Five applicants were selected for face-to-face interviews with the mayor and commissioners, although one was not able to attend.

"We had four people that we physically interviewed," Sieger said. "We selected two of the four that we thought could do an exceptional job. Mr. Buchanan was one of the two."

After additional information on the final two candidates was gathered, Buchanan was selected.

"We expect after talking with him, that he'll be with us for quite a few years," Sieger said. "He's not in it for the money, he's in it for what service he can provide for us."

Sieger said Buchanan's qualifications will help him especially contribute to the town's sewer project.

"Everyone in the town and the community that knows him and knows of him, and the staff and commissioners are expectedly looking forward to working with him," Sieger added.