Former Fincastle Vice Mayor George Sydnor resigned from the Town Council at the end of last month. Photo by Aila Boyd
By Aila Boyd

George Sydnor, whose term was not due to expire until December 31, 2022, submitted his letter of resignation for his post as the vice mayor on the Town of Fincastle Town Council on February 28.

Sydnor’s resignation was triggered by his relocation to a house that is located outside town limits.

“I have found the four plus years I’ve spent on the council to be very rewarding,” Sydnor said.

He explained that he originally decided to run to serve on the council after several citizens asked him to consider the option. Before being elected to the council, he had never held public office before.

Originally from Richmond, Sydnor has lived in Fincastle for the past 12 years.

When considering his time serving the citizens of Fincastle, Sydnor said he is most proud of the boundary expansion that occurred last year. The move, he said, saved the town from “becoming one of many disappearing small towns.” Before the expansion, he noted, roughly 60 percent of the property in the town was governmentally owned, which prevented growth from occurring.

He explained that it simply didn’t make sense that the boundaries of the town hadn’t been expanded since the town was incorporated in 1772.

The expansion, he said, will hopefully translate into a more vibrant town through the addition of boutique business ventures.

Sydnor praised Mayor Mary Bess Smith’s “tactful approach” to the boundary expansion. He added that she didn’t try to “overstep or overreach.”

As for the future of Fincastle, Sydnor said he hopes the town will “continue the momentum it has achieved over the past four or five years.”

Although he is no longer qualified to serve on the Town Council, Sydnor said he would like to continue to serve the citizens of the town by way of several committees. He said there’s nothing preventing a nonresident of the town from serving on town committees. Particularly, he said he’d like to remain on the Finance and Infrastructure committees.

“It’s a matter of giving back what you can or what might be needed,” he said.


Although Sydnor has retired multiple times, he said that he isn’t “content to sit back and watch the rest of the world go by.”

He currently serves at as senior vice president of Transact Capital. He previously served as chief executive officer of The McGraw Group, a regional industrial distribution company.

Sydnor holds a civil engineering degree from the Virginia Military Institute and a master of business administration from the University of Virginia, Darden School of Business.

According to David Tickner, town manager, the state code requires that a replacement for Sydnor has to be installed within 45 days. His replacement is expected to be announced at next month’s Town Council meeting, which will be held on April 11 at 7 p.m. in the Old District Court Meeting Room.

A special election will be held this November to fill both Sydnor’s seat on the council, as well as the seat that was vacated by Bob Jones last August. At the time of Jones’ departure from the council, Phillip Bartocci was selected to replace him. If Bartocci decides he wants to serve out the remainder of Jones’ term, which expires in December of 2020, he will have to stand for election in November.

The deadline for candidates to register to have their name on the November ballot is August 16 at 5 p.m.