Executive / City Manager
William Whitson graduated from the University of West Florida with a BA in Political Science and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration. Upon graduation, William was selected as a Presidential Management Intern (PMI) by the US Office of Personnel Management, beginning more than 35 years of combined management experience at the federal, state, and local level.
William served in the US EPA from 1983 to 1993. He spent time at EPA Headquarters in Washington, D.C. working in grants, contracts, communications & legislative affairs. He then helped found and establish the Gulf of Mexico Program Office at Stennis Space Center in Mississippi. The Gulf Office was dedicated to protection of the Gulf of Mexico.
William has been a professional local government manager since 1993, serving in Milton, Pensacola, Port Orange and Panama City in Florida; Cairo and Hapeville in Georgia; and East Ridge in Tennessee. He has been an ICMA Local Government Credentialed Manager since 2002. He has served in an EOC Operations for seven (7) Hurricane events.
William was elected to be the president of the Florida City/County Manager’s Association for the 2005-2006 term. During his tenure he organized a coalition of local governments, involving twelve jurisdictions in Florida, to assist with the long-term recovery effort on the Mississippi Gulf Coast following Hurricane Katrina. He was selected as the ICMA representative to the National Emergency Management Network (NEMN) and served on the Post Katrina Action Report Committee. William was also selected as the Florida League of Cities Municipal Employee of the Year in 2006.
In his local government career, William has served as a City Manager, Assistant City Manager, Department Head, and management consultant. He most recently served as City Manager of Hapeville, Georgia, and a Senior Advisor for the Long-Term Recovery Team in Aransas County, Texas where the eyewall of Hurricane Harvey first impacted the US. He helped lead an effort to secure over $150M in federal/state resources for recovery operations.
Mr. Whitson now serves as City Manager of Flagler Beach, Florida where he resides. William has been married to his wife, Becky, for 42 years. They have three grown children and five grandchildren.