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Posted on: August 1, 2019



NORFOLK, VA – On behalf of Norfolk City Council, Mayor Kenneth Cooper Alexander is pleased to announce that city council has tapped Dr. Larry “Chip” Filer to serve as Norfolk’s 16th City Manager.

“Dr. Filer has established a strong record of accomplishment in the fields of management and finance and is a recognized expert in economic development.  He is an analytical, empirically orientated and policy-driven leader who values success for all of Norfolk’s working families as well as openness and innovation.  Dr. Filer has become well acquainted with the organization and operation of the City of Norfolk, our anchor institutions, neighborhoods and most important our residents through his leadership of ODU’s partnerships with the city and its stakeholders.  He understands that resilient neighborhoods, safe communities, engaged citizens, and fiscal discipline will be key to our continued success.  We are excited about his upcoming tenure.”
Kenneth Cooper Alexander
Mayor, City of Norfolk

Dr. Filer currently serves as the Associate Vice President for Entrepreneurship and Economic Development for Old Dominion University, part of a 20-year career at ODU that included service as chair of the university’s economics department and director of its MBA program.  As an associate vice president at ODU, he led the creation of the Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, which consolidated entrepreneurial efforts and aided the university in capitalizing tens of millions of dollars in high-tech and medical research.  He has led ODU’s partnership with Norfolk on resilience efforts.  Dr. Filer is also an accomplished economist and has authored a series of articles addressing poverty mitigation, economic development, and international finance that have been featured in major academic journals.  A native of western Pennsylvania, Dr. Filer completed his undergraduate studies in economics at Westminster College in Pennsylvania and earned his PhD in economics from the University of Kentucky.

“I am honored and grateful that our city council has placed their trust in my ability to assist them in leading Norfolk.  I am eager to take the work that I have done over the past 20 years and put it into practice to make this city vibrant and more inclusive.  I look forward to continuing the transformation of the St. Paul’s Area.  We must remain focused on deconcentrating poverty and creating ladders of opportunity, or we will fall short of our promise to avoid the gentrification of this important and historic Norfolk community.  My success will also be determined by the safety of our neighborhoods, the delivery of strong reliable services, and the transparent administration of government.  I also look forward to working with more than 5000 new colleagues and their leadership, all of whom are tireless public servants who are making Norfolk a great city.”
Dr. Chip Filer 
City Manager designate, City of Norfolk

“Dr. Filer is an entrepreneurial-minded and innovative leader who has the vision and know-how to raise Norfolk’s profile to even greater heights. Norfolk is an important economic and research hub, and Dr. Filer’s decades of public service and economic development experience will ensure Norfolk leads as a top global destination for emerging technology and higher-wage job growth. As one of Norfolk’s largest employers, Old Dominion University is invested in attracting, training and retaining diverse talent. We look forward to collaborating with Mayor Kenny Alexander and Dr. Filer to advance economic opportunities in Norfolk and grow its entrepreneurship ecosystem.”
John Broderick
President, Old Dominion University

“Norfolk’s continued momentum and superb management are important, and those values are well reflected in our council’s choice for city manager.  I commend them for their diligence and look forward to a transparent and inclusive administration under Dr. Filer, that will provide opportunities and great services.  This selection continues confidence in the city’s direction.”
Bob Rawls
President, Norfolk Federation of Civic Leagues

Details regarding a formal press event to introduce Dr. Filer to Norfolk and its citizens are pending.

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