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Rocky Mount names 3 to leadership posts

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ROCKY MOUNT — Three key positions within the city’s Executive Leadership Team have been filled.

Beginning Monday, Sept. 21, Abdul Baloch will serve as the city’s chief internal auditor, while W. Gregory Cotten will assume the role of chief technology officer.

Joel Dunn has served as interim parks and recreation director since January and has been promoted to director of the department. His promotion is effective immediately. 

City officials describe Baloch as a well-rounded internal audit resource with a strong background and knowledge in government auditing and compliance. He has more than 15 years of experience supporting both public and private companies, including some Fortune 100 companies. In his most recent roles, Baloch worked for the Department of Administration, where he built and restructured internal audit functions and served on consultant projects with Cisco, MetLife and BB&T. 

Baloch holds two master’s degrees, one in economics from the University of Punjab, and the other in business management with a concentration in finance from the University of the District of Columbia.

Cotten comes to Rocky Mount with more than 20 years of experience in delivering technology solutions to the public sector after most recently serving as general manager for Standard Office Solutions, where he was responsible for defining the organization’s long-term technology strategy and vision. Cotten has served as chief information officer for the District of Columbia Government’s Department of General Services, where he was tasked with driving technology growth to bridge the digital divide for the D.C. citizen-centric sector. 

Cotten is a graduate of North Carolina Central University and is a certified chief information officer through the George Washington University Executive Leadership Program. 

“Both Abdul Baloch and W. Gregory Cotten bring tremendous talents to the city of Rocky Mount that I believe will make our organization better,” said City Manager Rochelle Small-Toney. “I’m excited to see how their respective departments will grow and improve under their leadership.”

Dunn has served various roles within the department since his arrival in 2009. His duties have included managing the activities of athletics, recreation services, outdoor programs, special events, administration, three community centers and the Rocky Mount Sports Complex.

Dunn completed his master’s degree in parks recreation tourism management from N.C. State in 2012.

“Joel Dunn is a proven leader, and his contributions to our Parks and Recreation Department have been extremely valuable,” Small-Toney said. “Joel has earned the opportunity to lead the department. Our community is fortunate that we have someone of his caliber leading our Parks and Recreation Department.”

Baloch will earn a salary of $120,000 per year; Cotton’s salary will be $140,000 per year; and Dunn will earn $128,000 per year.