courthouse-clocktowerHere in New Hanover County, the community, elected officials and county staff cooperate to balance a high quality of life with a progressive business and economic climate.

At less than 200 square miles, New Hanover County is the second smallest – geographically – of the 100 North Carolina counties; however, it is home to more than 232,000 people.

New Hanover County is not just a great place in which to live or visit. New Hanover County is also a great place to do business. Tourism, film production, the service and retail sectors are the engines that power our economy.

Our Mission: New Hanover County is committed to progressive public policy, superior service, courteous contact, judicious exercise of authority, and sound fiscal management to meet the needs and concerns of our citizens today and tomorrow.

The government of New Hanover County is committed to ensuring that you are safe, healthy and secure; that is our promise to you.

New Hanover County Manager Chris Coudriet serves as chief administrator of county government and maintains responsibility for administering all departments under the general control of the five-member Board of Commissioners.

The county manager’s work includes the development of the county’s annual budget. The budget is the policy document, financial plan, and operations guide and communications device of county government. It reflects the county’s response to the needs of the community and residents’ requests for services. New Hanover County’s government operates on a $392 million multi-fund budget for the fiscal year that began July 1, 2018 and ends June 30, 2019, serving more than 227,000 residents.

In addition, the manager and his executive leadership team are responsible for aligning the operations of the county to the adopted strategic plan and advancing the county’s mission and vision through five key focus areas: superior education and workforce, superior public health and safety, intelligent growth and economic development, strong financial performance, and effective county management.

Mr. Coudriet has served as the county manager since July 2012. Prior to his appointment, he served as assistant county manager for New Hanover County for four years and as county manager in Franklin and Washington counties, N.C.

Mr. Coudriet has nearly twenty-five years of public administration experience, with more than a decade as a county manager in North Carolina. He has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Urban and Regional Planning from East Carolina University and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of North Carolina at Pembroke.

He is a native of eastern North Carolina. Chris and his wife, Leigh, and two children Montgomery and Silas, reside in Wilmington.

New Hanover County has received the final economic development target analysis report from Jay Garner titled Pathways to Prosperity: New Hanover County’s Plan for Jobs and Investment and it’s critical companion piece, the Competitive Realties Report.

Manager's Message

For These Things and More, I Am Thankful

Posted November 20, 2018 at 8:25 am

By County Manager Chris Coudriet

Thankful. It’s a word most of us use around this time of year but it feels incredibly fitting for me to use it now as I reflect on the past two months.

I am thankful for our New Hanover County employees. They work tirelessly each day to serve our community, and this year they made even more of an impact through their service during Hurricane Florence.

More than 1,500 county employees worked in various emergency roles before, during and after the storm. They staffed our Emergency Operations Center, answered thousands of calls from the public and helped them find the answers they needed, rescued residents from rising water, coordinated supplies and distribution points that were vital to our community, managed shelters and came to the aid of residents who had nowhere else to go, and more.

They did so much and gave so much.

An employee who was working at a shelter was thanked by a resident, who said, “Thank you. You made staying here better than I ever could have expected.”

That means something.

Conditions may not have been ideal, but our employees made things better and they made a difference. And I am grateful for every single one of them.

I am also thankful for our Commissioners and other elected officials who were consistently providing support and guidance in the county’s emergency and recovery efforts. Their leadership helped drive the agenda for the work that needed to be done in our community, and they have been keenly focused on ensuring our residents have what they need in the days since the storm.

Thank you to the City of Wilmington, Wrightsville, Carolina and Kure beaches, New Hanover County Schools, NHRMC, our human services agencies, utility companies, state and federal agencies, and all of our emergency personnel for your partnership to keep our community safe and secure. What we went through was a team effort and our recovery would not have been possible without that collaboration.

There are so many positive stories that came out of this difficult experience. Hundreds of businesses donated to help others recover. The county received generous support from organizations, like World Central Kitchen, which volunteered to prepare food and served more than 20,000 meals per day in our region to first responders, the county’s Emergency Operations Center staff, and others who needed it most.

We had thousands of relief workers who came in to our community to help us recover. They met residents where they were – taking water and supplies directly to doorsteps. They served warm meals, helped residents clean up, and tarped countless roofs. It was comforting to know they were here, and they forever have my gratitude.

I have been proud of the many businesses who helped their employees throughout the storm – paying them even when the office was closed and supporting them when their homes were damaged. It shows the value of our workforce and the strength of our private sector.

I know for some, the road to recovery is longer than others. But we will recover. We will rebuild and be more resilient for future storms, and the county will be there every step of the way.

Our Hurricane Florence Recovery Coordination Office is already identifying and prioritizing the most critical unmet needs in our community to ensure the county is ready, so that when funds become available from state and federal resources, we can focus those dollars in a way that will be most helpful to residents and businesses.

Hurricane Florence has shown me just how strong New Hanover County is. People have been kind, businesses have been giving, and our community has come together unlike anything I have seen before. For these things and more, I am thankful.


Resiliency is Key to Economic Recovery After Florence

Posted October 19, 2018 at 1:56 pm

By County Manager Chris Coudriet New Hanover County experienced significant impacts from Hurricane Florence. The preliminary damage assessment across the county is more than $450 million in real and personal … Read More »


Lessons Learned from a False Alarm

Posted August 16, 2018 at 3:35 pm

By County Manager Chris Coudriet You may have heard about New Hanover County Government Center’s inadvertent emergency alert that happened on Aug. 1. The alert was treated as a real … Read More »


Increasing Recycling, Reuse and Waste Reduction

Posted July 18, 2018 at 3:58 pm

By County Manager Chris Coudriet If you want to see innovation at work, take a tour around the New Hanover County landfill. You won’t just see a pile of trash; … Read More »


Adopted Budget Saves Taxpayer Money and Makes Strategic Investments

Posted June 19, 2018 at 4:45 pm

By County Manager Chris Coudriet New Hanover County’s newly-adopted budget leaves more money in taxpayers’ pockets – $5.1 million to be exact – all while increasing funding for our public … Read More »