Kennebunk Town Manager Mike Pardue has announced he will retire in mid-November. Courtesy Photo

KENNEBUNK – Kennebunk Town Manager Mike Pardue said he is retiring in November.

He made the announcement to a joint meeting of the select board and the budget board on Thursday, Jan. 27, after making select board chair Blake Baldwin aware of his decision earlier in the evening.

Pardue, who began his duties as town manager in December 2016, noted his contract expires June 30, 2023, but that as a proponent of succession planning, said he felt it was important a new town manager have the opportunity to develop the next municipal budget.

“I will be retiring in early- to mid-November of this calendar year,” Pardue told the boards. “I do that predominately because I think it is very important our community have a new town manager who will have ownership of (the) budget process at the inception of that effort, which as you all know starts in November.”

“I will be here for that entire duration,” said Pardue, who thanked division directors and staff, and pledged to “work diligently” to ensure a smooth transition. “I look forward to the many projects we have pending and helping bring those to fruition.”

“We look forward to working with you over the next nine or 10 months as we transition to a new town manager,” said Baldwin.


On Friday, Jan. 28, Baldwin said the next step will likely entail formation of a steering committee to retain a search firm to help find and vet candidates for the position.

“Our intention is to look close to home, but include New England in general,” said Baldwin.

Pardue has worked in various management capacities for municipalities and private companies for 40 years. In Kennebunk, he was manager of police services for about 18 months and later returned for a stint in human resources before being named town manager when Barry Tibbetts retired.

“I am a resident of this community. What is most important is a smooth, pragmatic and practical transition,” said Pardue in a conversation Friday, Jan. 28.

Baldwin said that is how Pardue operates.

“It matters greatly to him  that the town is cared for and it shows in the work he has done … and he’s trying to set up the next town manager for success,” said Baldwin.

In his letter to Baldwin, Pardue noted his departure likely about Nov. 11.

“As you know, I have a great love for our community and a deep respect for the great professionals that serve Kennebunk,” Pardue wrote. “I look forward to assisting the select board in every way I can in the selection and transition of a new town manager. Between now and the time I leave, we have much to accomplish. I will cherish that time as we all continue to work diligently to keep Kennebunk recognized as a great community to live, work and visit. I thank you, the other members of the select board, and my colleagues, for the tremendous support I have enjoyed over my years as Kennebunk’s town manager.”


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