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The announcement of Kingston City Manager Jim Pinkerton’s retirement leaves us with mixed feelings.
He has earned the opportunity to give up the working world and spend his free time as he sees fit.
For that, we are happy for him and his wife, Wanda.
On the other hand, it saddens us to think of Kingston city government without him.
Pinkerton has been with Kingston for 12 years. He has done an excellent job advising and executing the demands of the city council and managing and taking care of city employees.
Morale has been excellent under his supervision.
City employees not only did their day-to-day jobs under his leadership, but also stepped up to tackle extra improvements for the city — often on their own time and on their own dime.
We can thank city employees for Kingston’s handsome pavilion at the lakefront and City Park. Proud employees sold baked goods, held spaghetti suppers and tirelessly raised money to give residents of the city this generous gift.
Pinkerton wasn’t simply a good city manager. A civil engineer with degree from Vanderbilt University, he also was invaluable in dealing with issues involving the city’s water and sewage plants.
Any regular observer of city government in action knows that managing a city is not for the weak of heart.
Along with general oversight and administration tasks, it takes leadership and character to keep politics from tainting the process and grinding down the people.
Pinkerton, ever the gentleman, often made it look easy. Don’t be fooled; it was not.