As Weatherford grows so does the city staff.

Jennifer Fadden made her first appearance at Weatherford City Hall Tuesday and met the staff she will soon be part of.

Fadden was hired after a three-month search to fill the newly created position of assistant city manager. She officially begins her duties Monday, May 8.

Fadden said her interest in city government was sparked by her father’s involvement on the city council in her hometown of Rowlett.

“He was on the council because he wanted to improve his community,” Fadden said. “I knew I wanted to do something related to politics or government, and I got into college concurrently at the same time he was on the council and it helped me steer my major, and then of course make the decision to go to graduate school.”

In 1995, Fadden graduated from the University of North Texas with a master’s degree in public administration.

For the next three years, she worked for the City of Fort Worth as a financial and management analyst and as assistant to the mayor. In 1998, she went to work for the City of Arlington as assistant director of parks and recreation and was the assistant to the city manager.

She said her ultimate goal is to become a city manager.

“But I’ve got a lot of learning to do before I’m prepared to do that from a career perspective,” Fadden said. “It’s something that I’ve committed myself to. I have every intention to spend the rest of my professional life working for communities.”

City Manager George Campbell said Fadden’s experience was essential in the decision to hire her.

The two worked together for a brief period of time when Campbell was in Arlington, and he has known her professionally for several years, he said.

“Anytime you have somebody who has had experiences in other places it gives you a different perspective on the way you are doing things, and that’s going to be good for the organization,” Campbell said. “It will bring an opportunity to look at other ways of doing things on projects in the community that perhaps we haven’t looked at.”

Her experience working with Campbell helped her make the decision to make the move, she said. Other factors in her choice to come to Weatherford is she has family here, and she believes it is a “great place to raise a family and grow up.”

“Everyone we’ve encountered in this community has been so friendly and welcoming — just genuinely happy about the community and anxious to tell me about it,” she said. “A small town has a different way of life, but it sure beats the traffic and the rat race.”

As for working in a smaller community, Fadden said she is anxious to start work and meet more members of the community.

“While Weatherford is considerably smaller than any community I’ve ever worked in, I think with the growth and the changes this community is facing, the problems aren’t that different,” she said. “I just hope I can help make a difference in improving the long-term quality of Weatherford. That’s why I came here.”

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