Newton’s Cowan named finalist for Monticello City Manager

MONTICELLO, Ga. –Newton County Commissioner Ronnie Cowan is one of three finalists for the position of City Manager of Monticello.

Monticello City Council recently made their choices for their position as the city’s top government official and are expected to meet on June 30 to announce their final choice, News from Monticello reported.

Cowan, a Social Circle resident, joins fellow Newton Countian Brenda Jacobs and Lithonia City Administrator LaThaydra Sands, a Jasper County resident, as finalists for the city’s top staff position, reported the newspaper.

The county commissioner confirmed Friday that he was a finalist for the job. He is serving his second term in the District 5 headquarters of the Newton County Board of Commissioners following his election in 2016 and re-election in 2020.

Cowan said The Covington News he wanted to work again in such a high administrative position in a municipal government.

“I saw this opening and thought maybe I could help them,” he said.

He also said he does not foresee any conflict between his elected county commission position and the appointed city position if Monticello Council hires him.

Cowan said the two councils meet regularly on different days of the week and he does not anticipate Newton County entering into intergovernmental agreements with Monticello, which is the county seat of Jasper.

He also said he had no plans to move to Monticello if hired – forcing him to resign from his elected office in Newton County due to residency requirements.

The veteran attorney and government administrator began his career as an officer with the Covington Police Department in 1979, according to information on the county’s website.

He was promoted to lieutenant and served as shift supervisor and the department’s first accreditation project manager where he managed CPD’s first two accreditations by the Commission on Accreditation of Law Enforcement Agencies Inc. (CALEA) in 1985 and 1990.

In 1990, Cowan was appointed human resources (HR) manager for the town of Covington and later worked as the town’s director of administrative services from 2007 to 2016.

Cowan earned a BS from the College of Public and Urban Affairs and a JD degree, both from Georgia State University, and was called to the Georgia State Bar in 1993.

He is also a member of the County Solid Waste Management Authority.

Jacobs is a Covington resident and works as the manager of the Jasper County Senior Center. She holds a BA from Allen University and an MA from Ashley University and Webster University.

Monticello City Council met the last two Saturdays to conduct interviews and reach consensus on the top three picks, News from Monticello reported.

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