At their meeting Tuesday, Ford County commissioners unanimously appointed Danny Gillum as interim emergency manager for Ford County.

Gillum, who currently serves as the assistant emergency manager, is stepping in for Michael Dunmars. Dunmars started with the county in March 2015 and was promoted to emergency manager upon the retirement of Ed Elam in April 2016. Dunmars’ last day was Feb. 6. County officials would not discuss the reason Dunmars is no longer on the job.

A previous executive vice president at Dodge City Community College,  Gillum's tenure at DCCC has come under a cloud over the past year. He was asked by the DCCC Board of Trustees to resign his position as executive vice president in October 2016, after more than 20 years at the college.

A subsequent audit and investigation by college auditors and Great Bend attorney Alan Glendenning revealed alleged misuse of college funds, misrepresented credentials, questionable payments, and conflicts of interest. Glendenning gave his findings to the Ford County Attorney’s Office who then forwarded the information to the Kansas Bureau of Investigation.

The Kansas Attorney General has not filed any formal charges against Gillum at this time.

Ford County administrator JD Gilbert made the recommendation to commissioners to appoint Gillum to the emergency manager position. Gilbert said any issues Gillum may have from his time at DCCC should have no bearing on his work as the county’s emergency manager.

“Those are two completely separate things,” Gilbert said. “Him being able to do the interim job has nothing to do with what he has going on at the college.”

Commissioner Ken Snook said he has no qualms about Gillum taking on the leadership position. Snook said he has known Gillum since he was a young man.

“I like Danny very well and I think he’ll do a great job,” Snook said. “He’s good at what he does and I’m sure he’ll work doubly hard to make sure everyone does a real good job.”

Gillum served on the Ford County Board of Commissioners from 2013 to 2017. Commissioner Shawn Tasset said it was a pleasure working with Gillum on the commission and points out that Gillum has been working for the county in the assistant position for nearly a year. He said any allegations against Gillum are only alleged at this time.

“We can address those things if and when they come up,” Tasset said. “It’s not up to me to make that judgement on him.”

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