VALDOSTA – Valdosta City Manager Mark Barber has appointed Human Resources Director Catherine Ammons and Public Works Director Richard Hardy as Valdosta’s new deputy city managers.
Ammons and Hardy maintain their respective director roles within their departments while providing leadership and oversight to city departments, city officials said in a statement.
“Catherine Ammons and Richard Hardy are dedicated public servants and leaders in every sense of the word,” Barber said. “Their accomplishments within their respective departments have made positive impacts on the City of Valdosta, and I’m excited to see what they each can do in other areas of the city organization.”
Ammons joined the city’s Human Resource Department in 2018. She served previously as the director of human resources at Wild Adventures Theme Park, where she focused on implementing human resources strategies by establishing department accountabilities, managing and developing human resources operations, and accomplishing special project results.
During her time with the city, Ammons has initiated the employee handbook’s revision process, improved employee communication and established new, effective policies and procedures for human resources and risk management, city officials said.
Ammons has accumulated more than 25 years of experience providing human resources for companies including General Electric, Jack Welch Management Institution, Wild Adventures and Ohio’s Department of Labor.
Ammons served as the former vice president of diversity and inclusion for the Cleveland Society for Human Resource Management.
She holds a bachelor of public administration from Fayetteville State University, a master’s of organizational leadership and development from Grand Canyon University, and a master’s of organizational and industrial psychology from Walden University. She is certified as a senior professional in human resources and speaks four languages.
She has lived in Valdosta for five years and said she is excited to work more closely with city departments.
“I am excited and thankful for the opportunity to be appointed to deputy city manager of administration. I love our city and am proud to take on this important job. We are in challenging times, but I want the community to know that we have an incredible team of dedicated, smart, and hard-working staff that will get us through this to continue to be the world-class city we all know and love well into the future," she said.
"I expect to continue offering strategic, collaborative and inclusive leadership to help advance the city’s priorities.”
Hardy has served as the director of public works since September 2014. He directly oversees nine divisions, including commercial and residential sanitation, recycling collection and distribution, right-of-way maintenance, Sunset Hills Cemetery, Mathis City Auditorium, fleet maintenance, facilities and ground Maintenance, and the roll-off division.
Hardy serves as a member of the American Public Works Association Small Cities and Rural Communities Committee and is an active member of Georgia’s APWA Southwest Branch. He is the vice chairman of Deep South Regional Municipal Solid Waste Management Authority, where he represents the city in sanitation, grant acquisition and landfill disposal requirements.
Hardy is a former APWA president for Georgia’s Southwest Branch. He is a 33-year Department of Defense veteran and a retired chief master sergeant of the Air Force.
Hardy holds a bachelor of science in occupational education from Wayland Baptist University, a master’s of science in information systems from American Sentinel University.
He received his certificate of local government management by completing the management development program from the University of Georgia, Carl Vinson Institute of Government. He has completed seven tiers of professional military education focused on leadership and management.
“I am grateful for this amazing opportunity and honored to be appointed to the deputy city manager of operations position. The City of Valdosta is incredible, and I look forward to continuing to work with the dedicated city employees, elected officials and citizens of this great community,” Hardy said.