Issue link: https://bristoltn.uberflip.com/i/799443
FROM THE CITY MANAGER Bill Sorah was appointed by the Bristol, Tennessee City Council to serve as City Manager in January 2014. Prior to assuming this position, he had served the city on 2 other occasions as Interim City Manager. Mr. Sorah has over 35 years of experience spanning both the cities of Bristol, Tennessee and Bristol, Virginia. He is a graduate of Belhaven College with a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Master of City Management degree from East Tennessee State University. He is a member of the International City Management Association, the Tennessee City Management Association, National League of Cities, American Public Works Association, and the American Water Works Association. Sorah also serves on the Tri-Cities Airport Authority Board and the Bristol Regional Sewer Oversight Committee. He formerly officiated collegiate football in the NCAA Division 1-A Sunbelt Conference. He has received 9 post-season assignments including the 2004 Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl in Atlanta, Ga., the 2005 MasterCard Alamo Bowl in San Antonio, TX., the 2007 AutoZone Liberty Bowl in Memphis, TN., and the 2011 Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl in San Francisco, CA. Sorah serves as a Trustee of the YMCA Endowment Fund and has served as Chairman of the YMCA Board of Directors. Sorah and his wife, Karen, have a son and 2 daughters. As I sit down to write this letter, I am reminded of the words in the theme for this year's report, and realize how true they are. There is something extraordinarily special about this place. For those of you who don't know, I was raised here, went to school here, and graduated from our local high school with some of the greatest people, many of whom have served us well in past, and some who are still leading in governmental capacities, the private sector, or are steering local industries to new heights today. I have been privileged to serve my hometown in many capacities over the years, but to be able to lead our great city from the seat I fill today is an extraordinary honor. I am privileged to work with a group of individuals who are of the utmost integrity and character, our City Council. This group of men and women work hard every day to ensure that our hometown is the best it can be. With the most remarkable people, diverse culture, welcoming spirit, celebrated heritage, and beautiful natural surroundings, where else but Bristol would we call home? It is part of our DNA. With this annual activity report, I hope you will find that our city staff strives to ensure that our city is strong and growing stronger. You will see our economy is robust, one of the strongest in our area, in private sector job growth and in retail sales. Our city finances are sturdy and our bond rating continues to be strong. We are home to new restaurants, new construction, new retail, new expanding industry, and new housing. We continue to create opportunities where our children can grow and eventually raise families of their own. Economic development such as this makes life easier and more convenient all while we preserve our rich heritage. Every day I wake up humbled, invigorated, and determined to do the little things and the big things needed to pursue our shared beliefs to make our city, our hometown, one of the greatest in the world! As the title of the report states, there is something special about this place we call home!