Living in Volusia County, like nearly everywhere in the U.S., has its everyday nuisances, whether it is occasionally slapping mosquitoes or encountering a road detour.
In December, the County Council approved the hiring of managers to help curtail those irritations: a new director of the Mosquito Control Division and a deputy director of Public Works.
U.S. Navy veteran and entomologist Marcus McDonough now heads the 28-person team of professionals devoted to reducing nuisance mosquitoes and the risk of mosquito-borne illnesses.
He replaces former Mosquito Control Director Suzanne Bartlett, who retired in October.
McDonough, who was selected by County Manager George Recktenwald for the position, was given a unanimous vote of confirmation by the County Council.
McDonough brings 15 years of experience as an entomologist working to control ornamental, urban and vector pests. He was a nursery inspector and compliance officer for the Indiana Department of Natural Resources for almost five years.
McDonough also served as an entomologist for the U.S. Navy since 2011.
A certified training specialist and a certified Department of Defense pest-management applicator, McDonough was scheduled to report to work Jan. 10. He has both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in entomology from Purdue University, and is also a certified training specialist and a certified Department of Defense pest-management applicator.
Volusia County Public Works Director Ben Bartlett has a huge job overseeing more than 400 employees and an expansive array of services that include road and bridge, traffic engineering, engineering and construction, stormwater management, mosquito control, water resources and utilities, solid waste and recycling and coastal activities.
And now, Bartlett has a deputy director to help manage the department after the County Council confirmed longtime Public Works employee Arden Fontaine for the position.
Fontaine has been with the county for 20 years, starting in April 2001 as a geographic information system (GIS) specialist in Public Works. He has risen through the ranks of Public Works since then, serving in positions of increasing responsibility — including special-projects coordinator, activity project manager and operations manager.
County Manager Recktenwald called him one of the hardest-working employees around.
“You’re not going to find anyone who outworks Arden Fontaine,” Recktenwald told council members moments before they unanimously approved Fontaine’s promotion.
While Fontaine has spent a career embracing — and implementing — new technology, he said it’s really the people who make things work. It was his way of praising his co-workers.
Fontaine has a bachelor’s degree in applied mathematics from the University of Connecticut and a master’s degree in geography from The University of Memphis.