Galax City Council Appoints a New City Manager

The Mayor and City Council of Galax are pleased to announce the appointment of Mr. Matthew Lee Settlemyer as its new City Manager. Mr. Settlemyer, who has worked for over 25 years in local government, most recently as the Town Manager of Mocksville, North Carolina, will replace Keith Barker who is retiring after 12 years of service as the City Manager and 29 years of service to the City of Galax. During a special called meeting on Tuesday, June 1st, the City Council unanimously approved an employment agreement with Mr. Settlemyer.
Mayor Willie Greene said, “We are glad to welcome Mr. Settlemyer to our community and look forward to his leadership of the City workforce and in the implementation of the Council’s vision for the community. City Council was impressed by his knowledge, experience, and demeanor and believes that Matt will be an excellent fit for Galax and the region. We are gaining a credentialed manager with a track record of achievement in community development, financial planning, grant writing and project management.”
The City Council conducted a national search for the new City Manager, assisted by The Berkley Group, of Bridgewater, Virginia. The Berkley Group received 35 applications and interviewed fifteen candidates. It then assisted the Council in selecting five finalists for interviews with the City Council.
Mr. Settlemyer received a Bachelor of Arts degree, with distinction, in political science from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill and a Masters of Public Administration degree from Appalachian State University. Early in his career, Mr. Settlemyer was a Solid Waste/Recycling Director, Public Works Director, and Town Manager in several North Carolina communities. He served as the Town Manager of Drexel, North Carolina from 2003 to 2012, as the Town Manager of Black Mountain, North Carolina, from 2012-2018, and as the Town Manager of Mocksville, North Carolina, from 2018 to 2020. Mr. Settlemyer is a Credentialed Manager by the International City/County Management Association (ICMA) and was active in community organizations in the towns where he served.
Mr. Settlemyer shared these thoughts about his appointment, “I am honored to continue my career as a public servant in the beautiful City of Galax. I was attracted to the City by its record of good governance under the Council/Manager model and its commitment to regional collaboration, transparency, and citizen trust. I appreciate the confidence that Council has shown in me. I am excited to collaborate with the City Council and employees to serve the citizens of Galax.”
Mr. Settlemyer will assume his duties as Galax City Manager on July 1st.