Moving on: personnel changes in the City of Fernandina Beach

Submitted by Suanne Z. Thamm
Reporter – News Analyst
May 29, 2021

First there was one, then there were three.

On Friday, May 28, Fernandina Beach City Manager Dale Martin announced the resignations of Golf Course Manager Steve Murphy and Building Official Stephen Beckman.  Earlier in the week Martin had announced the retirement of long time Parks and Recreation Department Director Nan Voit.

Murphy’s resignation is effective May 31, 2021.  Michael Cooney, former Assistant General Manager at the Amelia National Golf and Country Club, has been appointed to assume management of the City Golf Course effective June 1, 2021.

Mike Cooney

Cooney boasts an extensive background in golf management both in municipal and private sectors. His experience includes managing golf operations at Laurel Island Links, Sawgrass Country Club, Golden Ocala, and, most recently, Amelia National. Additionally, Mr. Cooney has played in multiple prestigious golf tournaments, including the South African PGA Tour.

City Manager Dale Martin is excited about Mr. Cooney’s appointment. “Mr. Cooney will make an excellent fit in the City and within the Fernandina Golf Club.”

Mr. Cooney says he plans to “embrace and share the rich traditions and values of the club.”

Beckman’s last day with the City is June 23.  The City is commencing a search for a replacement to serve as the City’s Building Official and Building Department Director.  In the intervening period between Beckman’s departure and hiring his replacement, the City will contract out the work of the Building Official.

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Thomas Smith
Thomas Smith(@tom-s)
2 years ago

Where is that request for the County to handle the building permits and inspections? Asking for a friend.

Perry Laspina
Perry Laspina (@guest_61160)
2 years ago

I wonder just how much contracting the building department officials work will COST the taxpayer’s until they find a replacement to fit the position, as it should prove fairly difficult under the building department’s present circumstances.

John Goshco
John Goshco (@guest_61168)
2 years ago

Seems like it might be more efficient to designate a current employee (who knows the local ins-and-outs) as the temporary Building Department Official” and then hire a replacement Inspector at a lower cost

John Goshco
John Goshco (@guest_61169)
2 years ago


Seems like it might be more sensible to designate a current employee/Inspector (who knows the local ins-and-outs) as the temporary “Building Official” and then contract for a temporary Inspector at a lower cost. At least you’ll have a person with local experience running the department while a permanent replacement is sought.