The man who is in charge of Warren County’s cleanliness has announced his retirement effective Feb. 1, 2019.
Warren County Sanitation Department director Steve Hillis is leaving after 38 years of service to Warren County government. For the last 21 years, he has been director and currently oversees a total of 12 convenience centers throughout the county for disposal of residential solid waste.
“It’s time for me to go home,” said Hillis. “I thought about it when I hit 62. I’m going to be 64. It’s time to go home and let someone else take over. This job has been good to me. The county has been good to me. It’s been a good ride. I’ve enjoyed most of it. Not all of it, but most of it.”
He’s leaving some big shoes that won’t be easy for the county to fill. While most department directors oversee employees and delegate responsibilities, Hillis has been more hands-on.
“I guess I’ve taken on more than I should over the years,” said Hillis. “I fix breakdowns of equipment, and work on the trucks. I’ve gone a bit overboard on trying to do everything. However, when equipment is down, people don’t like that. I try to keep the heat off and keep everything running. I’ve been director for 21 years, and I haven’t taken a vacation in 21 years.”
During the last Warren County Commission meeting, commissioners unanimously voted to name the Convenience Center office on Belmont Drive in honor of Hillis. County Executive Jimmy Haley presented him with a certificate of appreciation.
“There’s so much that he does,” said Haley. “Steve does the job of three people. Now, I’m tasked with how to replace him. I don’t think it’s going to be possible to find someone who’s willing to do all that he does. How do we hire three people to replace someone who’s been doing three jobs? I just don’t know, but I have until Feb. 1 to figure it out.”
No timeframe was given for the job to be posted and applications accepted.