Marion Town Administrator finalist for job in Middleboro

Sep 24, 2022

Marion Town Administrator James McGrail is one of four finalists for the position of Town Manager for Middleboro.

McGrail has been Marion’s Town Administrator since 2019. Before that, he was the director of facilities for Sandwich schools from 2018 to 2019 and the executive director of South Shore Country Club in Hingham from 2010 to 2018.

In his letter of application, he spoke of his work during the Covid-19 pandemic. “Having the opportunity to manage Marion through the last three years has been the responsibility of a lifetime,’’ he wrote.

His letter stated that “when I look back on my career, I believe that this challenge will be some of my finest management. From preparing vaccination clinics for first responders to making almost daily decisions on staffing and building operations, I was constantly challenged. I am proud to have been in a high-level management role during this time in our world and feel I successfully led Marion residents and our stuff through this tumultuous time.’’

He wrote that through his experiences, “I have developed a strong commitment to recognizing and serving the needs of the community. My experience in human resource management, municipal finance, public works projects and problem solving are critical to the success I have had in each of the communities I have worked in.’’

Others vying for the position are: Gregory Enos, Avon Town Administrator; Keith Hickey, Kingston Town Administrator; and Michael McGovern, Shirley Town Administrator; and James McGrail, Marion Town Administrator.

The chosen candidate will replace the current Town Manager, Robert Nunes, who is retiring as of October.

Enos has served as Avon’s Town Administrator since 2018. He previously worked as human resources director for Ashland from 2016 to 2018 and as Assistant Town Administrator in Whitman from 2012 to 2016.

Hickey has been Kingston’s Town Manager since 2021. His prior experience includes serving as Town Manager in Winchendon from 2015 to 2021 and as Salem, N.H. Town Manager from 2011 to 2015. 

McGovern has served as Shirley’s Town Administrator since 2018. He previously served as the assistant city manager for Lowell from 2014 to 2018 and coordinator of school information and director of the school foundation at Greater Lowell Technical High School from 2003 to 2014. 

Interviews with candidates have not yet been conducted. The issue is scheduled to be discussed at the Sept. 26 Middleboro Select Board meeting. 

The select board hired Groux-White Consulting to oversee the search and bring the top contenders for the board’s consideration. 

Twenty-three individuals applied for the job, including town managers, town administrators, chief financial officers, senior level department heads, a state agency commissioner and a former mayor in the Midwest, Richard White from Groux-White Consulting wrote in a letter to the select board presenting the candidates. 

The pool is a strong one, White wrote.

“Each is on an upward trajectory professionally, have good solid experience as managers/leaders, are successful performers in their current communities and are well regarded in the field,’’ White wrote. “The four finalists provide the board with an excellent variety. ‘’

He wrote that “any one of the four will serve Middleboro well.’’