LEONARDTOWN, Md. (August 24, 2011)—The Board of County Commissioners for St. Mary's County announced that they have hired Tony Jones to fill the vacant position of public information officer, effective September 19. Karen Everett, the previous PIO, was terminated by the Board on March 22 after a unanimous vote. She had held the position since February 2007. No public reason for the dismissal was given.
Everett's salary was $63,648 at time of termination. Jones has been hired at a salary of $62,000, according to the County's human resources office.
Jones comes to St. Mary's County from North Carolina with extensive experience in federal government communications and broadcast journalism. Most recently he was a writer/editor for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in the aftermath of storms and tornadoes which hit the state in April, 2011. There he wrote and edited a variety of items, including news releases, media advisories and organizational reports. Prior to that, Tony worked for the U.S. Census Bureau as a communications/media specialist. In that role he served as the North Carolina spokesman for the 2010 Census which included media relations activities, writing and issuing news releases, overseeing census promotions, and media training for census employees.
Jones' broadcast career spanned more than a dozen years as a TV news anchor, reporter and producer in various markets including New York City, Baton Rouge Louisiana, Raleigh North Carolina, Mobile Alabama and Elmira New York. Some of the events he's covered include the 2007 march on Jena, Louisiana, the aftermath of hurricane Katrina in 2005 - 2007 and provided live reports for CNN during hurricane Isabel in 2003.
The New York City native has also served as adjunct instructor with the New York University's School of Continuing and Professional Studies TV News Production workshop. Jones earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in communications from the New York Institute of Technology. He is an avid sports fan and enjoys traveling.