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New Aberdeen City Manager Randy Robertson, center, with his wife, Darlene, by his side, is sworn in by Mayor Patrick McGrady.
New Aberdeen City Manager Randy Robertson, center, with his wife, Darlene, by his side, is sworn in by Mayor Patrick McGrady. (BRYNA ZUMER | AEGIS STAFF)

Aberdeen's new city manager was officially ushered into his position Monday night, as Randy Robertson was sworn into office, a week after making the drive from Cordova, Alaska.

Mayor Patrick McGrady delivered the oath of office to Robertson, as the new manager's wife, Darlene, stood by his side.

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McGrady also thanked interim manager Kyle Torster, who is returning to his previous post as director of public works, for his service.

Robertson noted Aberdeen is the fifth city where he has worked, and he told the mayor and council that "you have a good city," although there is room for improvement.

He said he started collecting weekly reports from the staff and hopes to get metrics on city activities, as well as talk more with the council about vision and priorities for Aberdeen.

"If everything is important, then nothing will get done," Robertson said, shortly after he tried to respond to a handful of residents who criticized the city's new trash collection system.

"We need to do a better job articulating why we did this," Robertson told them about the new policy. "We need to do a better job informing you."

Robertson said he would work with Torster's department and his staff and be respectful of what they need as well as residents.

He asked residents to comply with the policy to the best of their ability until he personally responds to their concerns, in time for the next council meeting July 25.

Robertson will be earning about $10,000 more than previous city manager Doug Miller, whose salary was $125,960.

Miller served as Aberdeen's manager for 10 years.

Robertson previously served as city manager of Cordova, Alaska, for about two years. He also oversaw the cities of Vestavia Hills, Ala., Mt. Juliet, Tenn., and Ashland, Ky.

Robertson, a retired Army officer, had a 30-year military career.

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