Rep. Carson Smith named Pender County interim emergency management director

Carson Smith (Photo: Hannah Patrick/WWAY)

PENDER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — After less than three months on the job, Pender County Emergency Management Director Chuck Tear has resigned.

Tear has only been on the job since the new year. He took over for longtime Emergency Management Director Tom Collins, who retired on December 31.

- Advertisement -

Pender County commissioners held an emergency meeting on Wednesday where they hired Rep. Carson Smith as interim emergency management director for a period of four months.

Smith currently represents District 16 in the NC House.

Before he ran for office, he served as Pender County sheriff for 16 years.

“Carson will be the stabilizing force to lead Emergency Management through this pandemic,” George Brown, chairman of the Pender County Board of Commissioners, said. “Our Emergency Management and Public Health both have vital leadership roles as they work together to help guide our county through this event.”

Carson attended Topsail schools where he began working in many different aspects of public safety including Pender East EMS, Hampstead Volunteer Fire Department, and Scott’s Hill Fire Department.

Following his college education and training as a North Carolina Highway Patrolman, Smith returned to Pender County in the 90s to take the position of Emergency Management Coordinator.

Smith served as Emergency Manager until he was elected sheriff in Pender County in 2002.

Smith will oversee the day-to-day operations of the emergency operations center as the interim director.