Higgins selected as city of Cumming administrator
Phil Higgins, who has worked for the city of Cumming since 1989, was selected as the new city administrator at a special called meeting on Tuesday. - photo by For the Forsyth County News

The city of Cumming has selected a new city administrator.

At a special called meeting Tuesday, Phil Higgins was named the new city administrator after the recent retirement of Gerald Blackburn. Higgins was approved by a unanimous vote from the council.

“It’s a tremendous honor,” Higgins said. “I’ve followed in the footsteps of Mr. Blackburn, who held this office for as long as he did. It was a great honor to work with him and for him. Now, it’s just great to be honored with this appointment.”

Higgins, a lifelong resident of the area, started working with the city’s water department in high school in 1989 and has been with the city since in a variety of roles. He was named the city’s first human resources manager in 2006 and selected as assistant city administrator in 2016.

He said there isn’t anything specific he wants to tackle but is ready for the opportunity. 

“[I’m] just excited about the future,” Higgins said. “There’s a lot of opportunity in Cumming, and I just can’t wait to see what the future holds for the city.”

Higgins isn’t the only new face in the city, as Tuesday’s meeting was the first for Mayor Troy Brumbalow and Councilmen Chad Crane and Jason Evans. 

“We’re all working together, me and the new board,” Higgins said. “We’re all getting to know each other, and I think it is going to be a great relationship going forward.”

At the meeting, councilmembers wished him well on his new duties.

“Good luck, Phil,” said Councilman Christopher Light. “There’s a long list of duties.” 

Higgins expressed gratitude to the mayor and council at the meeting.

“I appreciate all of you, and I look forward to working for you,” he said.

Councilman Lewis Ledbetter said city staff should help make it a smooth transition. 

“Phil’s got some good department heads in the city. Those people can make his job easy, or they can make it hard,” Ledbetter said. “They are doing all good jobs.”