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Wednesday, Apr 01, 2015

County administrator gets high marks from bosses

Published:   |   Updated: June 1, 2014 at 11:50 AM

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County Administrator Len Sossamon received high marks on his annual report card last week.

All five county commissioners indicated they were pleased with his performance the last 12 months. His average score was 4.43 on a scale of 5.

This was Sossamon’s second evaluation since he was hired in May 2012.

Commissioner Dave Russell said the administrator has “strong visioning” skills for enhancing quality-of-life initiatives.

“Len’s personal involvement in community functions reflects well,” Russell wrote.

Commissioner Diane Rowden said Sossamon “has brought back consistency in government.

“He respects the county employees as the backbone of the organization and values their input,” Rowden wrote. “(He) has gained the employees’ respect through his management style.”

Rowden called him a “breath of fresh air.”

As a suggestion, Rowden said Sossamon might want to delegate more responsibilities to his four assistant administrators.

“In doing so, his schedule, that is full of back-to-back meetings, should become less full, allowing him to focus on economic development,” Rowden wrote. “I would like to see more jobs for Hernando County so any changes the administrator can make to assist in accomplishing that goal would be welcomed.”

This past year, county commissioners expanded Sossamon’s duties by handing him the reins of economic development manager, a post made vacant with the resignation of former manager Mike McHugh.

Commission Chairman Wayne Dukes called Sossamon a good communicator who steps up to take on more responsibility and “thinks outside the box.”

Sossamon said he feels “truly blessed” to be the county administrator in Hernando County at a time when there is such great economic potential.

“I feel even more blessed to have a board that recognizes the unique set of skills and abilities needed to lead the county forward during this time of opportunities and challenges,” Sossamon wrote in an email to Hernando Today.

Sossamon, the county’s ninth administrator since 1990, said the focus on collaboration and cooperation with the Hernando County School District and City of Brooksville, “will create huge dividends for the citizens of Hernando County.”

Prior to working in Hernando, Sossamon was co-founder and owner of Cabernet Holdings in North Carolina. He was county administrator of Newberry, S.C., from 2004-06. He was city manager of Concord, N.C. from 1985-98.

Sossamon makes $128,750 annually and gets an additional $3,333 per month while he is responsible for economic development, county records show.

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