has accepted the position of Ashland public works director, Mayor John Morrison announced today.

"We have been without a public works director for a number of months and I am convinced that it was worth the wait to get the right person with the right skills and someone who will fit with staff and the community. Mike is that person," Morrison said.

Faught is the public works director for Stayton., and has held that position for seven years; previously he served as the public works director for Ontario, Ore.

He brings a wide range of experience in the fields of engineering, utilities and facility maintenance, street maintenance, water and wastewater treatment and in the development of master plans for growth and infrastructure according to a City of Ashland press release.

City Administrator Martha Bennett and Mayor Morrison recently conducted reference checks on Faught.

"I was very impressed by the comments I received about Mike. All were very complimentary about his work; his management style and his sense of collaboration," Bennett said. "More than one person commented on his ability to bring people together, to plan for the future. All are characteristics we value in Ashland."

"I'm delighted to have been offered the position and I am eager to get started," Faught said. "I have heard high praise for the Public Works Department staff and look forward to working with them, the City Council, and Ashland citizens. I look forward to becoming a part of the Ashland community."

"Jim Olson has been stellar as interim public works director," Morrison said. "I am grateful to Jim and the entire Public Works Department for all their work these past months. Knowing the department was in good hands gave us the time we needed to conduct a thorough search for just the right person. Our community is fortunate to have capable and dedicated staff working on our behalf."

Former Public Works Director Paula Brown resigned in December, and has remained with the city to complete a number of special projects for the department.

The position of the public works director is appointed by the Mayor with confirmation of the city council. Faught's appointment will be an agenda item for the council at their regular meeting on May 20. If the appointment is confirmed, Faught will begin work in Ashland in mid-June.