Marysville News

Cunningham named county's first administrator


The first county administrator in Union County's history is taking a pay cut in accepting the job, but the commute will be a breeze.

John Cunningham lives about a block away from the county offices.

Union County commissioners chose him from an initial pool of 44 applicants.

Cunningham, 55, is currently chief financial officer for the Ohio Development Services Agency, where his annual salary is $98,009.

He will be paid a base salary of $95,000 in his new job, which he will start Dec. 9. As the county's first administrator, he will oversee a general-fund budget of $17.3 million.

Commissioner Gary Lee said the final selection came down to Cunningham and David Anderson, administrator for Delaware County's Liberty Township.

He said Cunningham's human-resources experience and training in data-driven analysis set him apart.

Commissioner Charles Hall said Cunningham's role won't be one of gatekeeper but will instead focus on day-to-day operations, allowing commissioners to refocus on big-picture issues.

Among the commissioners' top priorities for their new administrator are health-care changes, personnel issues, reviewing the policies for the rental of county office space and researching whether alcohol should be served on county property during special events.

Cunningham said he's eager to get started.

"I loved working for the state of Ohio, but here, at this level, you can make a difference and see it and feel it," he said.