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Richland County names flood ‘recovery chief’

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Staff Report
Published Nov. 6

Richland County has named Michael King, assistant director of the Emergency Services Division, to lead the county government’s efforts to reestablish infrastructure and restore services following the October floods.

michael king headshot web
As the county’s recovery chief, King will coordinate all communication and disaster recovery efforts.

“Mr. King has a wealth of knowledge that will help in the recovery phase,” said Tony McDonald, county administrator. “In this new role, he will oversee and manage the county’s day-to-day recovery operations.”

King, who serves as assistant director for the Emergency Services Division, was a key figure in the county’s planning prior to and during the Oct. 4-5 rain event and the weeks since.

King along with a crew of county staff and representatives of various community organizations gathered in the county’s Emergency Operations Center to monitor weather and road conditions, assist first responders, field calls from the public and start laying the foundation for recovery efforts.

“This was an unprecedented event for our county,” said Michael Byrd, director of the county’s Emergency Services Division. “The team in the EOC did a great job behind the scenes to ensure the people out in the field had what they needed to respond and help disaster victims – and Mr. King will be working to ensure our recovery operations run just as smoothly.”

A retired Ohio State Highway Patrol trooper, King has also served as a 911 communications center director in Ohio and South Carolina, and assistant city manager for public safety for Columbia.

“Mr. King has shown a real commitment for helping people,” said Richland County Council Chairman Torrey Rush. “With his leadership, we’re getting things back on track for our residents.”

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