GRAND RAPIDS — Kent County Administrator Wayman Britt has announced he is retiring in July 2021.
Britt has held top administrative positions with Kent County since March 2004 and was appointed to his executive position in January 2018.
“After 17 years serving Kent County, it will be hard to walk away from this job,” Britt said in his letter of resignation. “But I remind myself that I’m not walking away from this tremendous community. So many people have made an indelible mark on me — from our county team to those leading and making a difference out in our community.”
Britt’s employment agreement was set to expire Jan. 24, 2021, but was extended by six months after negotiations between Britt and Kent County Board of Commissioners Chair Mandy Bolter. The board will vote on Britt’s contract extension on Oct. 22.
“On behalf of the entire board of commissioners, I want to thank Wayman for his commitment, dedication, leadership and true public service to the people of Kent County over the past 17 years,” Bolter said in a statement. “I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to partner with him in service of our county and wish him the best on his well-deserved retirement.”
During Britt’s tenure as administrator, Kent County launched a strategic plan, modernized its IT infrastructure, created a funding source for early childhood services with First Steps Kent, helped launch the Kent County Population Consortium to address the need for a mental health crisis center in the community, and funded the new Kent County Parks Office.
Most recently, Britt has led the county’s public health and economic relief response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The county board’s approval of the contract extension includes provisions allowing for potential month to month extensions as needed to find Britt’s replacement.
The county board intends to conduct a national search for Britt’s replacement, but specific plans have not yet been announced.
Britt took on the role of interim county administrator/controller in July 2017 and was hired to fill the position after the board completed a national search in 2018. Prior to working at Kent County, he worked in operations and human resource management at Steelcase for 25 years.