Nine candidates to succeed Santa Rosa County Administrator Hunter Walker when he plans to retire at the end of the year have made the first cut by a selection panel.
Among the familiar area names still in the running are former Escambia County Interim Administrator Larry Newsom, a Milton resident, and Tony Gomillion, Santa Rosa’s public services director.
They are among 64 applicants reviewed by a paid, four-member group of current and former officials from outside Santa Rosa County.
Santa Rosa County’s Human Resources Department will soon conduct background checks and the selection committee will make a report to the County Commission, which will ultimately make the hire for the $132,000-a-year job. The panel’s report is expected by mid-October, according to Joy Tsubooka, county spokeswoman.