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Justin S. Merritt

New Assistant Manager Hired In Catawba County

Catawba County has hired Justin S. Merritt to serve as Assistant County Manager beginning April 24, 2023. Merritt will join County Manager Mary Furtado and Assistant County Manager Paul Murray in overseeing the administration of County government services for citizens.

Merritt brings significant government leadership experience to Catawba County, most recently as Assistant City Manager for the City of Shelby, N.C. Serving in this role for three years, he took the lead in preparing the City’s annual budget and supervised several departments including community development, parks & recreation, public works, housing, information technology, and finance.

Prior to becoming assistant city manager, Merritt served as Shelby’s director of finance for eight years. During that time, he was responsible for the city’s financial reporting, accounting, and budget preparation. He, along with his team, also managed several major projects for the city, including the development of a $32 million utility system expansion and a $7 million park complex.

Merritt’s local government experience started with the Town of Angier, N.C., where he served as finance director and deputy town clerk, and later as finance director for the Town of Smithfield, N.C. He began his career as an accountant and auditor with Duke & Abbott CPA in Fuquay-Varina, N.C.

Hailing from Bladen County, Merritt earned a Master of Public Administration from North Carolina State University and a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting from Campbell University. He is also a graduate of the Public Executive Leadership Academy at the UNC School of Government and the American Leadership Forum at the Lee Institute in Charlotte. He currently resides in Shelby with his wife and two children.

[News release and photo courtesy of Amy McCauley, Catawba County Communications & Marketing Manager]