Gomes honored with Gov’s Award for Local Government Excellence
LEWISTOWN — Former Mifflin County Planning and Development Director William Gomes was recently honored with a 2020 Governor’s Award for Local Government Excellence.
Hired in 1997, Gomes served as director until leaving the position in February.
Gomes said his career focus was “to work with rural communities to improve their transportation, housing, recreation and quality of life issues.”
Since coming to Mifflin County and Pennsylvania, Gomes has overseen a staff ranging from four to six people over his more than 22-year tenure. The work in Mifflin County has included assistance in the development of two county comprehensive plans; a brownfields assessment project; a county economic development revolving loan program; county water, sewer, and stormwater management plans, the county’s subdivision and land development ordinance update; a two-county open space and rural recreation plan and a county tourism plan.
Gomes has assisted with the restoration of key historic sites, including the Mifflin County Courthouse and the historic Stone Arch Bridge, successfully helped secure grants and provide implementation assistance for five streetscape projects to improve downtown Lewistown, the Kish Dog Park and the Juniata River Boat Launch.
Gomes’ work has extended to the Juniata River Trail, associated with the Mainline Canal Greenway and 911 National Memorial Trail.
Gomes has also been active with the Central Section of the Pennsylvania chapter of the American Planning Association including past chair; the Pennsylvania Municipal Planning Education Institute; the County Planning Directors Association of Pennsylvania; the Juniata River Valley Visitors Bureau; Downtown Lewistown Inc.; the SEDA-Council of Governments Natural Gas Cooperative; the Juniata Valley Behavioral and Developmental Service Citizens Advisory Board including past chair; assistance in the formation of the Mifflin County Parks and Recreation Council to improve recreational opportunities throughout the county and the Mifflin County Internet Advisory Committee to expand broadband services in the county.
Gomes holds a bachelor’s degree with a major in history and an masters with a major in geography from Vanderbilt University/George Peabody College for Teachers in Nashville, Tennessee. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners. He resides in Mifflin County with his wife Sandra.