A Burke County commissioner was recently sworn into a leadership position on the North Carolina Association of County Commissioners and received an award for his work on the opioid lawsuit settlement.
Burke County Commissioner Johnnie Carswell was sworn in as first vice president of the association during its annual conference in Wilmington on Aug. 14. Brunswick County Commissioner Frank Williams was sworn in as the association’s new president, and elected Tracey Johnson, Washington County commissioner, as president-elect, and Tare “T” Davis, chair of the Warren County Board of Commissioners, as the association’s next second vice president, according to a release from the association.
Carswell also was one of the commissioners in the state who received the Outstanding County Commissioner Award for their contributions as members of the opioid settlement working group, also known as the 555 committee. Other commissioners to receive the award were Buncombe County Commissioner Jasmine Beach-Ferrara, Orange County Commissioner Sally Greene, Rockingham County Commissioner Reece Pyrtle and Martin County Commissioner Ronnie Smith, the release said.
Their work was instrumental in developing the historic statewide Memorandum of Agreement on the use of opioid settlement funds. The award honors the recipients’ work on behalf of counties beyond their own county boundaries, according to the association release.
NCACC also honored the following individuals for their achievements in the opioid lawsuit settlement.
Catawba County Attorney Debra Bechtel (retired); Forsyth County Attorney Gordon Watkins; Ron Aycock, special counsel, Person County; Moore County Attorney Misty Leland; Guilford County Attorney Mark Payne; Graham County Manager Becky Garland; Mecklenburg County Manager Dena Diorio; Nash County Manager Zee Lamb; New Hanover County Manager Chris Coudriet; and Dare County Manager Bobby Outten received the Presidential Recognition Award for their contributions as members of the 555 committee. Their work was instrumental in developing the Memorandum of Agreement as well.
Another Burke County commissioner, Scott Mulwee, will serve on the NCACC Board of Directors for a two-year term as the District 13 representative.
NCACC organizes the state’s 100 counties into 18 multi-county districts, and commissioners in each district select a district director to serve as a key conduit for information sharing between the board of directors and their district, communicating local issues that need attention, according to the association. Mulwee, along with other district directors, will assume his role this fall when he is officially sworn in. Those other district directors are:
District 1: Bob Kirby, Chowan County Commissioner
District 3: Theron McCabe, Craven County Commissioner
District 5: Darrel Gibson, Scotland County Commissioner
District 7: Marcelle Smith, Halifax County Commissioner
District 9: Kirk Smith, Lee County Commissioner
District 11: David Allen, Randolph County Commissioner
District 15: Myron Yoder, Polk County Commissioner
District 17: Gayle Woody, Jackson County Commissioner
NCACC partnered with New Hanover County on this year’s conference, which was themed “Navigating the Current, Charting our Course” to recognize the historic challenges and opportunities all counties are facing. The conference, which is the year’s premier event for counties, provides a forum to conduct official Association business and offers educational and networking opportunities for commissioners and county staff, the release said.
The North Carolina Association of County Commissioners is a non-partisan organization representing the official voice of all 100 counties on issues considered by the General Assembly, Congress and federal and state agencies. The association provides expertise to counties in the areas of advocacy, research, risk management and education and leadership training.