Apex Town Manager Heads to Duck, N.C.

Drew Havens, who has served as the Apex Town Manager since 2016, is moving on to a new assignment as manager for the Town of Duck, N.C. His last day on the job in Apex was Friday, Feb. 5.

“The past six and a half years working alongside the over 500 women and men who serve this community has been an incredible experience,” said Havens. “Our team, working with our elected officials, have accomplished some really great things to improve upon the services we provide.”

Drew Havens

Under Havens’ leadership, Apex moved forward with many initiatives including an organizational realignment, Downtown Plan & Parking Study, Vision Zero designation and associated roadway and pedestrian safety improvements, SolSmart Gold designation for solar power achievement, the first ever Citizen Satisfaction Survey, and first ever Community Branding Study.

He also facilitated capital projects including Public Safety Station 5, addition of large tracts of future parkland and upgrades to existing parks, and the construction of the Senior Center, Pleasant Park, and the Electric Operations Department.

“Apex has sustained its great quality of life while experiencing significant growth and demand since Mr. Havens’ appointment as manager,” said Apex Mayor Jacques Gilbert. “Through his commitment and dedication, we have been able to define a clear vision, identify strategic goals, and advance the mission of our town to better serve citizens.”

Even with an organization of Apex’s size, Havens made it a priority to spend time with every new hire as they entered the workforce. He was dedicated to fostering a positive work culture for town employees. Havens created the PEAK Principles, an internal pledge for all Apex employees to complete each day’s work with the values of Performance, Empowerment, Accountability, and Knowledge at the top of mind.

During his 20 years of municipal management experience, Havens also served in Glasgow, Virginia and River Bend, North Carolina. He holds a Masters in Public Administration, and maintains the Credentialed Manager designation from the International City and County Management Association.

Prior to management, Havens served for 12 years in local law enforcement, and has nearly 30 years of volunteer firefighter/EMT experience.

“As we move forward, our town is better positioned to provide more opportunity to many, thanks to his leadership. I wish Drew even more success as he transitions to his new assignment,” Gilbert said.

The town will bring in an Interim Town Manager, Ralph Clark, to fill the seat while a nationwide search is conducted. Clark is a retired manager who came highly recommended from both the North Carolina League of Municipalities and other Towns where he has previously served in interim roles.

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