Greenfield City Manager Ron Coffey spent his final day on the job receiving the well-wishes of Greenfield residents, as well as village and county officials, and expressing gratitude for the opportunity to work on behalf of the village for the past five-plus years.
Coffey and his wife, Dianna, spent Friday afternoon greeting visitors who poured steadily into the Greenfield council chambers.
He received resolutions and certificates of appreciation from State Sen. Bob Peterson (R-17th Distr.) and Highland County Sheriff Donnie Barrera, and good wishes from other officials such as, among others, Highland County Common Pleas Judge Rocky Coss and former Hillsboro Mayor Betty Bishop, whom Coffey succeeded in the role of city manager.
Council members and other village officials and employees attended the event, as well as a number of Coffey’s personal friends and acquaintances.
Bishop spoke highly of Coffey, saying, “He and I are totally different people. What I brought with energy, he brought with smartness. He’s done a fabulous job.”
At his final council meeting last week, Coffey thanked council members and Greenfield residents for allowing him to serve the community in the capacity of city manager.
“It’s been a whirlwind, full of twists and turns – sometimes very happy occasions … some disappointments and setbacks, but we have kept working to advance our community and I think Greenfield has made progress,” he said.
Council members presented Coffey with a proclamation expressing their gratitude and appreciation for Coffey’s service to Greenfield. The proclamation named March 30 as Ron Coffey Appreciation Day.
Council is expected to name Coffey’s replacement at its next regular meeting on April 4.
Coffey is a Greenfield native and McClain High School graduate. Having earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Ohio University, Coffey was an editor and reporter with the former Greenfield Daily Times and its affiliated papers around the county, and spent 13 years as editor of AAA Today magazine. He then spent 16 years as court administrator with the Highland County Court in Greenfield before accepting the city manager job.
One of his main tasks as city manager was overseeing the completion of repairs on the Greenfield rail spur and the nearly 1,000 jobs that depend on the track’s existence, a project which began when Bishop was city manager.
Coffey said Friday he plans to stay involved the community. He and his wife might travel more, he said, but they plan to continue living in Greenfield and being “part of the fabric of the community.”
On Friday, between hugs and handshakes with visitors, Coffey recalled a newspaper column written in January 2013 when he first took the job, where the writer imagined a scouting report on Coffey as a basketball prospect.
The column said, “Coaches who have seen the 6-1 Coffey say he’s one of the more underrated public officials in the region. He leads the community in assists, but accomplishes his goals with little attention or fanfare. He also multitasks surprisingly well, scores his points within the team system, and leads his town to victories on a consistent basis.”
On Friday, Coffey said, “I hope I’ve gotten a few assists over the years.”
Reach Gary Abernathy at 937-393-3456, or follow on Twitter @AbernathyGary.