Don Juan was known for having a way with women, however, Don Warn, who’s just been named Guilford County’s chief financial officer, is known for having a way with numbers – specifically budget numbers.
Warn brings more than a quarter century of experience in finance to Guilford County and he is going to need that expertise to oversee the financial operations of Guilford County government, which has been spending money like crazy in recent years.
The county put out the following press release on Monday, Feb. 6 – the first weekday after the Guilford County Board of Commissioners held its annual retreat and explored which financial moves the county should make in the coming years: “Guilford County is pleased to announce the selection of Don Warn as the county’s new Chief Financial Officer. Warn joins Guilford County after serving for more than 25 years in a variety of financial leadership roles in public finance at the local level. Guilford County’s Finance Department manages the county’s financial planning, reporting, and controls to ensure compliance with local, state, and federal laws, policies, and generally accepted accounting principles.”
Before coming to Guilford County, Warn, most recently, worked as the finance director and CFO for Buncombe County, a job he’s held for the previous five years. Buncombe County, with the county seat of Ashville, has a population of about 270,000 – roughly half the population of Guilford County.
Warn has also worked outside of North Carolina. He held finance jobs in Colorado in various capacities.
Warn received a bachelor of science degree in accounting from Metropolitan State University of Denver, and a Master of Public Administration from the University of Colorado at Denver. He earned his Certified Local Government Finance Officer designation through the University of North Carolina School of Government.
Warn will begin his role as CFO for Guilford County on Monday, Feb. 13.
Assistant Guilford County Manager Jason Jones said that, after a national search was conducted, it became obvious that Warn “was the best candidate to lead the Guilford County Finance team as we continue to provide excellent financial oversight of the county’s resources.”
Jones also said Warn should be able to help preserve Guilford County’s excellent bond rating that it now has from all three national bond rating agencies.
Warn’s resume includes the following: serving as President of the Colorado Government Finance Officers Association and serving as a current member of the North Carolina Government Finance Officers Association, the Government Finance Officers Association and the International City/County Managers Association.
In the Monday press release, Warn stated, “I am looking forward to joining the Guilford County Finance Department team and working with the county leadership to continue to move their financial practice forward. I have spent more than 25 years working in both the public and private financial sectors and have chosen a path in the public sector because it allows me to have a direct, positive impact on my community.”
Given the big-spending ways by Guilford County government these days, it may be a good omen that the county’s CFO will now have the name “Warn.”