Changing of the guard for Fayetteville’s finances

New Fayetteville Finance Director Mike Bush and Assistant Finance Director Carleetha Talmadge are presented with the city’s 18th consecutive Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) award for excellence in financial reporting at the Aug. 21 City Council meeting. The award was accepted on behalf of outgoing finance directors Ellen Walls and Lynn Robinson. Photo/Ben Nelms.

Fayetteville’s longtime finance director Lynn Robinson has retired and gone from City Hall. Filling her position is former auditor and Henry County finance director Mike Bush.

Bush is currently treasurer of the Ga. Government Finance Officers Association. He worked previously as treasurer and chief financial officer in Stockbridge and, for more than 11 years, as finance director in Henry County.

Bush was known by outgoing city finance co-directors Robinson and Ellen Walls, who knew him from his time as an auditor with Mauldin and Jenkins, the firm that conducts the city’s annual audit.

Asked about his new post in Fayetteville and what brought him to the city, Bush said the finance department under Robinson and Walls is one that was established correctly.

“It was a good fit for me and I wasn’t going to miss the opportunity,” Bush said. “If you want a picture of where it’s done right, take a picture of Fayetteville.”

Bush described himself as a fiscal conservative, one who believes in “spending wisely and correctly the first time around.”

As for replacing Robinson, Bush said he has big shoes to fill, adding, “I believe I’m up to the task and Fayetteville will not skip a beat.”

Robinson and Walls retired during the Great Recession but remained with the city on a part-time status. Robinson ended her time with the city at the end of August.

Walls, another longtime city finance director, will end her time with the city later this year and will be replaced by Carleetha Talmadge who is receiving an internal promotion.

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