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Chester County Press

Himes begins role as township manager for New Garden

01/23/2023 11:41AM ● By Richard Gaw

Courtesy photo           Chris Himes, former assistant city manager for Manassas Park, Va., began his new position as New Garden Township manager on Jan. 23.

By Richard L. Gaw, Staff Writer

The New Garden Township Board of Supervisors adopted Resolution 877 at their Jan. 17 meeting that formally approved the appointment of Chris Himes as the township’s new manager, a position he began on Jan. 23.

As part of his new job, Himes will also serve as the township’s open records manager, recycling coordinator and volunteer coordinator, as was approved at the meeting.

Himes replaces former township manager Ramsey Reiner, who left the township in September 2022.

Himes will begin at New Garden Township on the heels of his role as the assistant city manager for Manassas Park, Va., where he oversaw the city’s administrative functions of finance, IT and human resources. As the lead for enterprise technology planning and implementation, Himes supported the city’s economic development initiatives for small business development, and also oversaw Manassas Park’s community services in economic development, health, mental health and housing.

Himes also served as a member of the Board of Directors for the Prince William County Chamber of Commerce as well as the Northern Virginia Economic Development Alliance.

A graduate of Virginia Tech and the University of Southern California, Himes served as an officer in the U.S. Navy for ten years, primarily as a helicopter pilot, where he amassed over 2,000 flight hours.

New appointments

In other township business, the township’s Park and Recreation Board of Directors appointed Helen Doordan as chairperson for 2023, Sadaf Cheema as vice chair and Brianna Small as secretary. The Open Space Review Board of Directors appointed Chris Robinson as chairman for 2023, Randy Lieberman as vice chairman and Steve Dooley as secretary, and Lieberman and Dooley were reappointed to additional three-year terms.

In his report to the board, interim Police Chief Joseph Greenwalt of the Southern Chester County Regional Police Department (SCCRPD) said that as a result of the recent hiring process, the department has hired a new full-time police officer who had most recently served two years in Chester Township Police Department in Delaware County. He is scheduled to begin his new position at the SCCRPD on Jan. 23.  The department is also in the early stages of a promotion process for the position of Sergeant.

In addition, Greenwalt said that the department is waiting on the Kennett Consolidated School District to finalize a grant it had applied for to fund the appointment of a school resource officer, who would come from the SCCRPD and serve the district’s schools.

With conditions related to variances and future uses, the board approved the zoning application of the Ducklings Early Learning Center, which is projected to open a child care facility at the New Garden Professional Center, located at 385 Starr Road, beginning in September.

As spelled out in a presentation before the board, Ducklings will occupy the first level of the building and half of its second floor and share space on the second floor with New Garden Dentistry and Maternal and Child Health Consortium. It will serve more than 120 children, feature an indoor gymnasium and provide two gated outdoor play areas, one adjacent to the building and the other – a tricycle and scooter play area – off of the parking lot.  

The board also approved the purchase of 25 kiosks that will be installed throughout New Garden Township Park as part of a StoryWalk Solutions exhibit that will be unveiled on June 6 of this year. Created by Barking Dog Interpretive Design, Inc., each kiosk will hold pages from a children’s picture book for children and adults in the community to enjoy reading while walking in nature.

To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, email [email protected].