Simmons agrees to contract, will start in November

By Chris Maza

LONGMEADOW – The Select Board and Lyn Simmons came to an agreement on a contract that will make her the town of Longmeadow’s town manager.

The board formally announced Simmons’ hiring on Oct. 9, stating successful contract negotiations concluded on Oct. 7. Simmons, currently Northampton Mayor David Narkewicz’s chief of staff, is expected to replace interim Town Manager Jay Moynihan the week of Nov. 10.

“I’m honored to have been selected as town manager. Longmeadow is a beautiful community with engaged and active residents. I look forward to working with the Select Board and getting to know the department heads, employees, and town residents,” Simmons said in a statement.

Select Board Chair Marie Angelides told the Longmeadow News the contract was for three years with a starting annual salary of $139,000. The Select Board will discuss any wage adjustments as part of Simmons’ annual performance evaluation.

Former Town Manager Stephen Crane’s salary was $140,000 at the time of his departure for a similar job with the town of Concord.

Simmons was selected from three finalists who were chosen from a pool of 25 applicants and eight candidates who advanced to preliminary interviews with the town’s search committee.

“We are very excited to have Ms. Simmons lead our community,” Angelides said. “She has 15 years of municipal experience and is highly respected and recommended in the field. Our interim town manager, Jay Moynihan, has provided important leadership as we manage three large building projects in town. We will miss him but look forward to this new chapter in Longmeadow.”

Simmons began working in Northampton’s municipal government in 2004. She was the mayoral aide to former Northampton Mayor Clare Higgins as well as Narkewicz from 2011 to 2014 when Narkewicz created the chief of staff position and elevated her to that role. Earlier in 2014, she was selected to become Southampton’s town administrator but did not agree on a contract.

Narkewicz congratulated Simmons in a Facebook post, stating, in part, “While I am sad to lose such a talented and invaluable member of my team, I am incredibly proud of Lyn and look forward to seeing all of the great things she will accomplish for the town of Longmeadow.”

Simmons becomes the third town manager in Longmeadow’s history, succeeding Crane, who served the town for six years. Crane was preceded by Robin Crosbie, who became Longmeadow’s first town manager in 2005 after residents approved a new town charter in 2004.