Walmer returns to Houston schools as transportation director

jmink@macon.comJune 7, 2013 

WARNER ROBINS -- After stepping down in February from his role as chairman of the Houston County Board of Education, Tom Walmer has returned to the school system.

Walmer recently was hired as the district’s transportation director, replacing Frank Scott, who retired May 31.

“I come in to hopefully continue the things he had in place,” Walmer said. “It’s a good time to catch up on our fleet maintenance, expand training for drivers, with safety being our number one priority.”

Walmer most recently was retail manager for Flint Appliance Center, which closed. In the face of the job loss, Walmer resigned from the board of education to pursue employment, he said. He was a board member for 11 years and chairman for about five years.

Now he is adjusting to his new role as the head of transportation and is happy to again be working with Houston County schools, he said.

“It was an important part of my life,” Walmer said about serving on the board. “I came back (to the school system), and I feel blessed being able to do so.”

Superintendent Robin Hines highlighted Wal­mer’s leadership experience and his commitment to Houston County schools as some of his qualifications for the position.

“He brings over 25 years of management experience to the job, and also he served 11 years on the board and five as the board chair,” Hines said. “And he is obviously familiar with budgets, personnel and the workings of the entire school district, including the transportation department.”

Walmer said he has been learning the daily routines and policies of the job, as well as getting to know the transportation employees and their responsibilities.

When he was looking into pursuing the job, he noticed “so much of it was logistics management and people management and budgetary concerns and policy review,” he said. “And all of that was basically what I have been doing for the past 30 years.”

As part of his new role, Walmer is now in the audience at school board meetings. At his first board meeting as transportation director, he said, it was somewhat strange to be attending the meeting rather than leading it.

“It’s just a different perspective being on the opposite end of the table,” he said.

To contact writer Jenna Mink, call 256-9751.

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