Familiar face to run Public Works on temporary basis

Chris Warneford will oversee the Public Works Department in Covington on a part-time, temporary basis.

COVINGTON, Ky. - A familiar face will oversee Covington’s Public Works Department on a part-time temporary basis while the City searches for a permanent director. 

The City has hired Chris Warneford, who ran Kenton County’s Public Works Department from 1992-2001 and 2010-2015.
“Chris knows the job, the people, the region, and the mission, so he’s the perfect choice as an interim director,” City Manager David Johnston said. “We will greatly benefit from his regional knowledge, his relationships, and his experience.”
About 10 people applied for the position, which was posted after the retirement of Director Rick Davis and the departure of project engineer Chad Schneider left the Department and its 67employees in need of temporary leadership, Johnston said.
The City began interviews to hire a project engineer, and will soon do the same for the permanent director’s position.
“We’re making progress, but we don’t want to rush,” Johnston said. “With Chris here, we won’t have to.”
Warneford also was director of public works at the City of Bellevue in 2004-09, where he also was building inspector and worked in code enforcement.
He said he’s a “results-oriented” leader who prioritizes customer service.
“People don’t remember all the good work you do - they just remember that one time you didn’t do good work,” he said. “That’s why in Public Works you need to strive to be the best you can be, at all times.”
Working in local government, that mission is especially important, “since we’re answerable to a constituency,” Warneford said.
While at the County, Warneford said he worked on a number of collaborative projects in Covington, including laying the gravel pathway of the Licking River Greenway & Trail system, the renovation of the Kenton County Fire Training Facility on Boron Drive, and the rehab of Historic Linden Grove Cemetery & Arboretum.
He said it’s been a long time since he began his career operating a jack-hammer and tearing down the bridge columns on the 26th Street bridge in Covington, but he said he still gets excited by the work.
“I really like Public Works,” he said. “The people who work here are unsung heroes.”
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