With as much turmoil that’s going on in Summerfield right now, you might think no one would want the job captaining the ship – however, there was at least one person who wanted that job, and, at a Thursday, June 6 meeting of the Summerfield Town Council, the council named Dana Luther, a former interim town manager from 13 years ago, as the new interim town manager.

She was also given the role as the temporary finance officer for the town.

The entire staff of the Town of Summerfield submitted their resignations two weeks ago after the majority of the Summerfield Town Council refused to renew the contract of 12-year Town Manager Scott Whitaker.

 Staff members said the majority of the council showed Whitaker disrespect by not providing severance pay or allowing him to remain on the town’s insurance plan even though his wife is battling cancer. The council eventually provided both of those benefits but by then it was too late.

Before the June 6 meeting, there was a lot of speculation by town residents that it would be Luther who would be called on to save the day.

One Summerfield Town Council member, Jonathan Hamilton, was extremely pleased with the appointment of Luther to the position.

In a statement he sent out Thursday night, Hamilton wrote, “Dana, a familiar face and pillar of support to our community, has graciously accepted the role of Interim Town Manager once again. Her return comes highly recommended by esteemed former Council Members, who witnessed her exemplary service firsthand.”

Thirteen years ago, when Luther served as the town’s finance officer, she was named as the interim town manager of Summerfield, a job she took on while keeping her finance officer role – and while running a CPA firm as well.

“Dana’s roots in our community run deep,” Hamilton wrote. “Since building her home here in 2000, she has been an active and cherished member of Summerfield, drawn by the same qualities that we all hold dear: our excellent schools, low taxes, and the serene rural beauty that surrounds us.”

He added, “A proud mother, wife, and business owner, Dana embodies the spirit of Summerfield. Her acumen as a Certified Public Accountant will be invaluable as she oversees our town’s finances with the same intelligence, talent, and respect that has earned her widespread admiration.”

Hamilton also said that he recognizes the town faces many big challenges right now, but Luther’s resilience, strength of character and courage are exactly what the town needs to overcome its problems.

Summerfield is currently facing the possibility of having 1,000 acres de-annexed by the State of North Carolina and there has also been some talk that the state could revoke the town’s charter, though few people believe that will happen.

The town still has plenty of other positions to fill since, currently, town councilmembers and volunteers are the ones picking up trash and trying to keep the town somewhat operational.