ALBEMARLE — Following a monthslong search and interview process, Stanly County officials announced on Jan. 29 that they had hired Candice Boyd Moffitt as the county’s new director of Economic Development. County manager Andy Lucas has served as the interim director and will continue to fill the role until Feb. 25, when Moffitt will assume her duties.
“The County interviewed several qualified candidates, but Candice’s ability to stay laser focused under pressure, proven ability to quickly grasp and address complex issues, demonstrated ability to build relationships and networks of support, outstanding customer service skills and passion for Stanly County stood out during the interview process,” Lucas said in a press release.
The vacancy was created after Michael Smith, who had accepted the director role the year prior, announced suddenly that he had accepted a role in another county closer to family. Lucas also served as interim director for a period before Smith was hired.
Joseph Burleson, who sits on the Economic Development Commission, told Stanly County Journal the county has been fortunate to have Lucas as county manager during these transitional periods.
“Andy has been very capable, and Stanly County is very blessed having someone like Andy who can handle dual roles this well,” Burleson said. “But we did need to free him up from serving in both these capacities.”
Moffitt currently serves Stanly County as the director of the county Transit Services Department, where she has been for more than two years. She also was the director of Stanly’s Agri-Civic Center for almost a decade and served on the Visitors Bureau board of directors.
“She has been promoted up in the ranks of Stanly County government,” said Burleson. “There’s a lot to learn, but she is definitely capable of learning it. I think we’re in good hands with Candice.”
The Riverstone Business Park continues to be a major focus for the economic future of the county, but there will be many opportunities they will be leaning on Moffitt to identify and take advantage of.
“The main thing is networking and with her past positions, she has a lot of contacts and can get going on that quickly,” said Burleson. “She’s very outgoing. She’ll have to get up to speed on some of the projects we’re working on, of course; the big project is obviously the Riverstone Business Park.”
Moffitt studied at Stanly County Community college and also has a BA from East Carolina University. Burleson said as a longtime dedicated member of the community, Moffitt will be a good fit as the county continues to seek new development projects.