RITTMAN/NORTON – Rittman is looking for a new finance director, the current one moving to take over the job in nearby Norton.

Pam Keener took over Rittman’s books in 2013, coming from the state auditor’s office, where she’d been since graduating from National University in 1999. By 2005, she’d worked her way to management.

“Most of my career has been spent auditing local governments in Wayne County,” Keener said as she assumed her duties in Rittman.

This includes cities, villages and school districts. While she’s worked with Rittman schools, she has not audited Rittman. The city uses a private auditing firm that contracts with the state.

“Council was just informed (Feb. 6) of Pam’s resignation,” Rittman City Council President Leah Weirick told The Post. “She has put in a 60-day notice and will work until April 6. We posted an advertisement (Feb. 11) for her position with a deadline for resumes set for Feb 28. At that time we will begin the interview process.”

Keener will take over in Norton from Ron Messner, who has served Norton for a little over five years. Messner is retiring.

“After discussions with my wife and family over the holidays, I am alerting you that I would like to retire Friday, Feb. 28,” Messner wrote to Mayor Mike Zita on Jan. 13.

In Norton, the finance director is appointed by the mayor with council’s advice and consent.

“It has been my honor to serve with you in your administration, as well as city council and the citizens of Norton,” Messner said.

“We began a search to find a suitable replacement (after receiving his letter),” Zita told The Post. “Messrs. Messner, (law director Justin) Markey, (city administrator Robert) Fowler and I reached out to several individuals who had experience in local government finance to gauge interest in working for the city of Norton. Of these discussions, several interviews were held and ultimately Mrs. Pamela Keener, the current finance director in Rittman, was selected as the candidate I would recommend for hire to the Norton City Council. Her knowledge and experience, as well as prior employment at the state auditor’s office, make her an excellent fit for our needs. I introduced her to council in executive session on Monday, Feb. 10, with the hope of her confirmation this (Feb. 13). We are confident in her knowledge skills and abilities to perform the duties of the director of finance and she will be a welcomed asset to our team in the city of Norton. I want to thank Mr. Messner for his more than five years of service to the city of Norton. We appreciate all of his efforts to ensure compliance with the laws and for all of his accomplishments while serving in this capacity.”

Norton council had called a special meeting for Feb. 13 to consider Keener’s appointment but later canceled it for a lack of quorum.

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