By Janet Jacobs
William “Bill” King was officially hired as the economic development director for the City of Corsicana Tuesday night, by unanimous vote. King was the former CEO and president of the Nacogdoches economic development board. He resigned from the post this past May.
He’ll start work on Thursday in Corsicana. The position also is employed in a dual-role capacity by the county, but King has yet to be confirmed by Navarro County commissioners.
The city interviewed seven people for the post. Conducting the interviews was a committee made up of the Mayor Chuck McClanahan, City Manager Connie Standridge, City Councilman John McClung, County Judge H.M. Davenport, and County Commissioner Dick Martin.
“I thought he was an excellent candidate who brings substantial experience,” Standridge said.
McClanahan said he was impressed with King’s writing abilities — King was editor of a business magazine for 15 years before going to work in Nacogdoches — and the contacts he has in the business world.
“Just the way he presented himself in interviews, as well as his knowledge,” McClanahan said. “He was just an impressive candidate and had the qualities we were looking for.”
While the city of Nacogdoches has more people, 13,000 of them are students at Stephen F. Austin University, so the sizes of the permanent population are fairly close, King said.
One big advantage Corsicana has over Nacogdoches is the interstate, he said.
“Having an interstate is enormously important,” King said. “And proximity to Dallas, while not being in the Metroplex.”
The lower land prices while not being too far from major airports are a good selling point, he said.
King is married and has three children with his wife, Linda. His sons will graduate from SFA in December and May, while his daughter will graduate from high school in May and expects to attend Texas A&M University.
“Sometime next summer my wife will join me here,” he said.
Nacogdoches County Judge Joe English said the city and county did benefit while King was there.
He pointed to the retention and expansion of the Cooper industry, as well as the expansion of natural gas companies in the city which created 200 jobs.
“There were some good, positive things during that period of time,” English said.
King replaces Lee McCleary, who left in May to become economic development director in Red Oak.
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