Appointment follows Page’s 6-months as Interim City Manager
The Durham City Council has named Interim City Manager Wanda Page to the permanent position, effective immediately. The announcement comes following an initial engagement with a firm to begin a national search last month.
"City Council members realized how fortunate the city is to already have someone who essentially has been preparing for this position for all of her 30-year career,” Durham Mayor Steve Schewel said. “Wanda is a consummate professional, with vast experience, rock-solid judgment, and a deep knowledge of local government and our community. Furthermore, she has earned the respect and support of the organization and community as a trusted leader, not just over the past six months, but during her entire tenure in City government."
Support for Page was unanimous added Mayor Pro Tem Jillian Johnson. “Wanda has clearly demonstrated that she understands the values of the Durham community, and will continue to work to carry out plans and initiatives that make Durham the special place that it is, always striving to be inclusive, innovative and community oriented, while being fiscally responsible,” she said.
“This is an opportunity of a lifetime -- to lead an organization that I truly love that serves the needs of a community that I truly love,” Page said. “While recovery from the economic and personal effects of the COVID-19 pandemic has been my strong focus over the past six months, other issues the city, like many other cities across the country, faces are just as complex. Creating a safer community continues to be high on my list, and effective solutions must involve constant innovation and a broad range of collaborators and partners.”
“Also, I believe that we as a local government must always consider the impact and persistence of inequitable systems that affect the quality of life of residents in our community, particularly in communities of color. These inequities have led to slower-than-desired progress in areas such as economic prosperity and safe, affordable housing options for all residents. Solutions will take creative, innovative thinking and consistent, sustainable, and equitable engagement to find solutions that lead to real progress,” Page said.
Page joined the City of Durham in 1987 as a senior staff accountant and then served as assistant finance director/controller from 1999 to 2002. From 2002 to 2006, she served as the internal audit director, and then as assistant city manager from 2006 to 2008, and was named deputy city manager later that year, with the arrival of the previous city manager.
Page is a 1982 graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. She later earned a master’s degree in Business Administration from North Carolina Central University in 1995. She has been an International City/County Management Association (ICMA) credentialed manager since 2010, and is also licensed by the North Carolina State Board Certified Public Accountant (CPA) Examiners and the Institute of Internal Auditors as a certified internal auditor.
Page currently serves on the executive board of the Lincoln Community Health Center Foundation and on the MPA Advisory Board of the Public Administration Department at North Carolina Central University.
Page was named Interim City Manager following former City Manager Tom Bonfield’s retirement on September 30, 2020.