The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

January 7, 2014

Beckley's mayor meeting employees

By Wendy Holdren
Register-Herald Reporter

BECKLEY — New Beckley mayor Bill O’Brien isn’t wasting any time — he’s already meeting with department heads and employees to decide on a plan of action for his next two and a half years in office.

“I’m trying to learn as much and see as much and ask as much as I can,” O’Brien said.

He spent his weekend with some city reading materials and he started his Monday at 7:30 a.m., first meeting with City of Beckley Director of Emergency Services Kevin Taylor to discuss the winter weather.

“He updated me on what the city is doing, just in case we need to have emergency shelter in place,” O’Brien said.

He continued his day, meeting with other city department heads, city employees, several members of Common Council, as well as CEO and President of the Beckley-Raleigh Chamber of Commerce Ellen Taylor.

“I’m finding out what they do and how they do it. I’m asking for input from employees on their opinion.”

O’Brien said as a talk show host, he learned it was better to listen first, then make a plan of action; he plans to follow that format for city planning as well.

As for any department head position changes, O’Bri-en said it’s too early to tell. He did say meetings have gone well so far, though.

“My goal is to be a quick learner and digest all the information. I’m a bit amazed at how much the city does and how good they are at what they do. As a citizen here all my life, you really take city services for granted.”

— E-mail: wholdren@register-herald.com