Dayton officials didn’t have to look far to find the right candidate to succeed longtime Town Superintendent Rick Chandler.
John Crim, a New Market resident with deep family roots in the central Valley, starts July 16 as the town’s next top administrator. Chandler is retiring Aug. 1 after 22 years as Dayton’s superintendent.
Town Council unanimously approved Crim’s hiring at a meeting June 28. He’ll earn an annual salary of $70,000.
Council members cited Crim’s diverse background as a big reason why he stood out among the 27 candidates who applied for the job.
Crim, 65, has worked as a building official and deputy engineer for cities in Maryland, served as chief engineer and capital project manager at James Madison University, and is a business owner in New Market, where he’s active in economic development efforts.
“He blew us away,” Dayton Mayor Charles Long said. “At his interview, he had [specific] examples of what could be done and how they could improve the look of Dayton.”
While running the day-to-day operations is the town superintendent’s main responsibility, Crim also will be tasked with leading economic development initiatives in Dayton.
That’s where his experience in New Market comes into play, council members say.
Crim is a former president of the New Market Area Chamber of Commerce, leads the historic district overlay committee, and owns the Quality Inn and Johnny Appleseed Restaurant.
“He has a business owner’s point of view in terms of economic development,” said Councilman Josh Lyons, chairman of the personnel committee. “Each component of his experience really fit our needs.”
While Crim said he would continue to own the hotel and restaurant, he’s pulling away from the operational side of the business, turning that over to his brothers.
Crim called the Dayton managerial job a “good fit” for his background and interests.
“New Market and Dayton are very similar in terms of size. Both of them have older buildings and the beautiful architecture that goes with that,” he said. “They’re also very similar in terms of municipal challenges.”
Council asked for at least a five-year commitment from him, Crim added.