NAPLES — After months of searching and interviewing candidates, officials have named John Hawley as their new manager. He is slated to start work in late February.

Hawley, 49, of Oxford is director of operations for Regional School Unit 16, which encompasses Mechanic Falls, Minot and Poland. He previously served as the town manager in Mechanic Falls.

“I’m pretty excited to return to municipal administration,” Hawley said. “Naples seemed like it would be a really good fit.”

Naples Selectboard Chairman Jim Grattelo was impressed with Hawley’s resume.

Hawley was a firefighter, EMT, fire inspector and code inspector in Mechanic Falls before being manager there.

“This gentleman is going to take the town of Naples to the next level — where we need to be,” Grattelo said.

“We lucked out,” said Grattelo, noting that Hawley’s application came after the selectboard extended the deadline to late September to get more applicants.

The selectboard decided in July to hire the Maine Municipal Association to help conduct the manager search.

The board narrowed the pool of applicants down several times, and Grattelo said Hawley was the only candidate asked to interview a second time in the final round.

“He stood out so strong in the first interview,” Grattelo said, adding that there were “some (selectboard) members who wanted to hire him on the spot.”

Hawley said he knew that if he was going to make the move back to municipal government, he “really only wanted to work in smaller communities.”

He plans to commute 25 minutes to Naples from Oxford, where he lives with his wife and daughter. Another daughter lives out of state.

Interim Naples Town Manager Mitch Berkowitz will continue serving until Hawley arrives, with one transitional week of overlap between to the two, Grattelo said.

Hawley said one of his focuses will be capitalizing on growth that is “creeping up through Cumberland County,” and he sees “a lot of economic growth potential there.”

He said he hopes to “try to create more year-round opportunities” for local businesses.

John Hawley


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