Last month, the Buchanan Town Council appointed Susan McCulloch as the new town manager. Council members completed their search following the departure of former Town Manager Jason Tyree who recently resigned. McCulloch takes over overseeing town government functionalities and will continue to work with the Town Council toward Buchanan’s betterment moving forward.
McCulloch is originally from New Hampshire. She moved to Virginia and attended Averett University for equestrian studies. She later graduated from Old Dominion University and received a Master’s Degree in Public Administration. Her father-in-law, Jay McCulloch, was a native of Buchanan.
McCulloch is currently preparing to move to Buchanan from Pittsylvania County, where she spent the previous two years as the county’s Economic Development project manager. She and her family plan to complete their move following the end of the current school year.
In her previous trips to Buchanan, the town’s sites and citizens first attracted her to the area.
“The swinging bridge is really cool,” McCulloch said of the town, “The river is so clean. You can tell it’s really well maintained. The people interact with the river, which was attractive to me just because it’s a community anchor and a visitor anchor. I love the architecture—I’m a fan of main streets wherever I go.”
While in Pittsylvania County, McCulloch worked to bring in new businesses into Danville and other parts of the county, bringing in almost $500 million in capital investment, and creating over 1,500 new jobs.
Buchanan’s grassroots efforts to continuously revitalize the town fascinates McCulloch, who is impressed with Community Development Manager Harry Gleason’s efforts.
“The town is passionate, and they care about the community,” McCulloch continued. “They want to take care of it and preserve the historical aspects of the town because you can never rebuild a place like Buchanan. It takes years to become something like this.”
McCulloch looks forward to working with the Botetourt Chamber of Commerce and the Economic Development department to further better Buchanan and the Botetourt community. She plans to visit the historical sites and to keep all of the information available up to date for the general public. For McCulloch, economic development is a priority.
“The downtown development and special events/tourism activities are extremely beneficial for economic development,” McCulloch stated. “That is a key for Buchanan.”
McCulloch officially takes over as town manager for Buchanan on April 12. The current interim town manager, Jon Ellestad, will continue his duties leading up to McCulloch’s arrival.