Newport Man New State Ferry System Director

North Carolina's ferry system has a new director, an employee who has worked his way up the ladder.

Harold Thomas begins his new duties immediately as director of the Ferry Division. The Newport man began as a crew member in 1994 for the Cherry Branch-Minnesott Beach ferry. Most recently he was assistant director of operations.

North Carolina has the second largest ferry system in the country, employing nearly 500 people.

Thomas replaces Harold Finch who was fired last year after just two months on the job. Finch said he was let go after trying to clean up the system. But state officials said the man was fired because of personality conflicts with his staff.

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