Fairlee finds its next town administrator in Bradford’s government

Democrat Monique Priestley, left, canididate for Orange-2 House District, kisses her partner Ryan Lockwood after he brought her a warm coat as she campaigns outside the polls in Bradford, Vt., on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. Priestley's opponent, Republican Zachary Lang, is at right. (Valley News - James M. Patterson) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

Democrat Monique Priestley, left, canididate for Orange-2 House District, kisses her partner Ryan Lockwood after he brought her a warm coat as she campaigns outside the polls in Bradford, Vt., on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. Priestley's opponent, Republican Zachary Lang, is at right. (Valley News - James M. Patterson) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. James M. Patterson

By PATRICK ADRIAN

Valley News Staff Writer

Published: 09-18-2023 1:55 PM

FAIRLEE — A member of the Bradford, Vt., Selectboard has been named Fairlee’s new town administrator.

The Fairlee Selectboard offered Ryan Lockwood the town’s lead administrative role shortly after a board meeting on Aug. 28. Lockwood started work on Monday.

“Ryan brings a wealth of both management and municipal experience to this position,” Chairman Lance Mills said in a written statement. “His strong sense of community will be a tremendous asset to the town of Fairlee as we work to revitalize our town.”

Lockwood, 41, is an IT professional with a background in agriculture and food services management. Prior to being hired in Fairlee, Lockwood worked as a consumer protections specialist in the Vermont Agency of Agriculture.

Lockwood credited his public service in Bradford for cultivating his interest in municipal government. He has served on the Bradford Selectboard since 2019, when he was elected at Town Meeting to serve the final year of the departing Lisa Sharp Grady’s three-year seat.

“You can make a lot of things happen at the local level of government, much faster than at (the state or federal levels),” Lockwood said in an interview. “It’s all about your community and what your community wants.”

Lockwood said he is excited about the growth and revitalization efforts occurring in Fairlee, which has just under 1,000 residents, according to the 2020 Census.

A major project, Lockwood said, will be the addition of crosswalks and sidewalks on Main Street in downtown Fairlee, a project that is still in development.

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Lockwood’s predecessor was Tad Nunez, who retired in August after five years in the role.

Patrick Adrian may be reached at padrian@vnews.com or at 603-727-3216.

CORRECTION: Ryan Lockwood , Fairlee's new town administrator, is a member of the Bradford, Vt., Selectboard. A previous version of this story was incorrect in its description of his role on the board.