by Marissa Lorenz
The Grand County Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) enthusiastically welcomed the recent hire of long-time employee Micah Benson as the new assistant county manager.
Benson is a self-described “Army brat,” according to the County’s subsequent press release, and she talks about
her family finally settling in Colorado Springs after her father’s retirement from the Army.
Benson continued the nomadic behavior herself in her early college years. But she returned to Colorado in 1996 when she transferred to the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs and accepted a summer job in Grand Lake, managing a store owned by family friends.
Benson met her future husband, Larry, while working in Grand Lake and would go back and forth between Grand County in the summer and Colorado Springs during the academic year until graduating with a business degree in 1999.
Upon graduation, Benson moved to Grand County permanently. She and Larry were married and she accepted a job in the Grand County Treasurer’s Office, both in that same year, setting down two parallel paths that she remains dedicated to today.
The Bensons live in Granby with their 12-year-old son, who attends Grand County Christian Academy. Larry currently works for Northwest Ranch Supply in Kremmling. As a family, they like to spend time camping, fishing, and hiking.
“I enjoy getting out in the woods,” Benson states, noting that she took up hunting about six years ago.
Benson is involved in her church community and volunteers at her son’s school. She also serves as president of the Kremmling VFW Auxiliary, a community organization that supports veterans and their families through projects like Wreaths Across America.
“I appreciate what people do for the freedoms we have in this country. And I think it’s important to recognize that,” says Benson on her motivation for serving in this way.
Benson observes that the Kremmling VFW Auxiliary also supports “veteran-focused organizations, such as Project Sanctuary,” and she is especially enthusiastic about this last.
“I love the philosophy of Project Sanctuary, because they focus on the whole family,” she explains. “They believe the whole family serves. It’s not just the person who signed up for military service. They work with the kids, the spouses–it’s the whole family.”
And while Benson has increased her community involvement over the last two decades, she has also grown her experience and knowledge within County government.
Benson moved from administrative assistant to deputy treasurer and chief deputy public trustee in the Treasurer’s Office. In 2005, she would transfer to Road and Bridge, serving first as the office and airports supervisor and more recently as assistant superintendent.
Benson may be one of the few who have driven most of the 800-plus miles of county-owned roadways. She can now troubleshoot a fuel system, “taking things apart and putting them back together.” She passed her Commercial Driver License test last year. And
since the East Troublesome Fire, she has been involved with the Emergency Watershed Program, building her water knowledge.
“I’m learning as I go,” Benson says of her time at Grand County. “I am proud of stepping outside my comfort zone and learning many new things.”
And she is bringing that enthusiasm forward into her new position. “There are a lot of issues facing the county right now. A big one that I have had first-hand experience with is the staffing shortage. I hope to work toward finding creative solutions to help departments find talented employees.”
“I’m excited to see where the County is going,” concludes Benson. “I’ve been here a long time, and I plan on retiring from here. There’s a lot of big stuff coming. It’s going to be exciting.”
County leadership also expressed their enthusiasm for Benson’s taking up her new role.
“[Benson is] very experienced and knows the County very well,” stated Ed Moyer, who served as assistant county manager until his recent appointment to county manager. “She’s very well-suited for this position, and we look forward to many great things to come. I’m excited to have her on board as my assistant.”
“[Micah Benson] has got a wealth of knowledge about this county,” said Commissioner Kristen Manguso. “I think [the County Manager and Assistant County Manager] are going to make an excellent team.”
For more information on Grand County government and its services, or to listen to the BOCC’s next regular meeting, go to co.grand.co.us.