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Changing of the Guard

At the end of January David Lynd, Lawrence County Engineer, will retire after 28 years of service and Doug Cade will be taking over office.

The public face of Ironton’s private engineering firm will be the next county engineer.

Doug Cade, of E.L. Robinson Engineering, has been appointed as acting engineer following the retirement of David Lynd, effective Feb. 1.

Lynd’s retirement was announced and Cade’s appointment made at Thursday’s Lawrence County Commission meeting.

Lynd, a Republican, has held the position of county engineer for the past 28 years, always running for each subsequent four-year term unopposed. The Ohio Revised Code requires that a county engineer be both a professional engineer and a licensed professional surveyor.

He took over as engineer following Ralph Hill, another long-time officer holder who held the post for 43 years.

Known by many as a tactiturn man, Lynd could find himself in the midst of controversy. A year ago when he began a chip and seal project on a portion of County Road 107 angry residents called county commissioners wanting it stopped. At that time residents claimed the chip and seal had reduced the highway to a gravel road.

Lynd defended his actions saying, “Whatever potholes I can patch, I’ll patch them.” He also said he was going to seek state funds to resurface the road the next year.

When Lynd declined to attend commission meetings after being specifically invited twice to explain his actions, the commissioners unappropriated his $1.2 million budget. The day after that commission action Lynd said he would cease the chip and seal and repave the road.

Lynd, who has an undergraduate and master’s degree in civil engineering from The Ohio State University, said he chose now to leave office because his wife will also retire this year.

“We have a grandson who’s a year old and we will be keeping the road hot from here to Cleveland,” he said.

Lynd looks back at his tenure as a time when he was able to maintain county roads while maintaining fiscal responsibility.

“We have been able to accomplish what we have been able to within the budget, able to make use of grant money,” he said. “You can’t do everything you want to. (But) if you can leave things better than you found them.”

Commissioners praised the appointment of Cade, who is expected to be named to the job permanently by the Republican Central Committee next month.

“Doug is very familiar and been involved with a lot of projects,” Commissioner Jason Stephens said. “He cares about Lawrence County.”

Cade, a native of Waterloo, also has a civil engineering degree from Ohio State. He joined E.L. Robinson about seven and a half years ago and has worked on county and city projects including the recent sewer rehabilitation project. Before that he was director of operations for the Ironton-Lawrence County Community Action Organization.

“I look forward to the opportunity to serve the county,” Cade told the commissioners.