"Royal Oak is one of the most vibrant towns in the midwest," said former City Manager Tom Hoover. "In fact I would put its downtown up against any in the country."
Hoover was Royal Oak's top official from 2004 through 2009.
A self-described professional city manager, he managed day-to-day administrative operations in Toledo, OH (1990-1993) Worcester, MA (1994-2004) and Royal Oak (2004-2009) before becoming Town Manager of Coventry, RI in 2009.
"This is the smallest of all the places I've managed. The population is only 36,000," he said. "But it's 65 square miles. It's the largest land area in Rhode Island."
Hoover was recently recognized by the International City /County Managers Association with an award for his 45 years of service in municipal government.
"I was one of only four in the country to receive the award. Not many people have longevity in government," said Hoover. "I probably will retire in a few years. I love being a city manager. I've been doing it for 23 years."
While he says he enjoys the East Coast and New England, he has fond memories of Royal Oak.
"The Dream Cruise was exciting. It's something I will always remember," he said. "I enjoyed living in Royal Oak. It was a good time for myself and family."
Thanks to social media and wife Diane, Hoover continues to follow news from Royal Oak.
"My wife is on Facebook and she follows what's going on there," Hoover said. "We consider Jim Ellison a good friend and I think he is doing a good job as mayor."
Hoover added all the city departments were well run and he had good department heads during his years in Royal Oak.
"Please tell them all I enjoyed their friendship," he said.