SOUTH KINGSTOWN – R.I. State Police Col. James M. Manni is returning to municipal government as a town manager once again.
After serving for three years as the head of the Rhode Island State Police, Manni has been hired as the new South Kingstown town manager. The Town Council voted unanimously on Monday to hire Manni in the role.
Gov. Daniel J. McKee said that Manni will be retiring from state service after a distinguished 28-year career. Manni is expected to start in the role on May 2 and will remain at the helm of the state police until April 29.
“Col. Manni is a man of great integrity who led the agency with the highest degree of professionalism and dedication,” said McKee. “It is clear to anyone who knows him, that his commitment to the Rhode Island State Police is truly remarkable, and his leadership, particularly over these past three years, has been exemplary. He raised his hand and stepped forward, serving during some of the most challenging times in our history, and the state of Rhode Island is most grateful.”
Manni, who joined the state police in 1990, was appointed to colonel of the R.I. State Police by Gov. Gina Raimondo in Dec. of 2018, succeeding the departing, Ann Assumpico.
He served 25 years with the state police, before retiring as major in 2015 to then work for the R.I. Turnpike and Bridge Authority. Following that role, he served as the town manager of Narragansett.
Manni’s three-year contract will pay him $170,000 annually, with five weeks of vacation, five personal days and 80 hours of management leave.
“I have proudly served, shoulder to shoulder, with the men and women of the state police to enhance public safety and to serve the people of Rhode Island with respect and dignity,” said Manni. “Leading this agency has been the honor of my lifetime. I leave with the confidence that the agency is set up to succeed and continue in its mission of serving and protecting.”
Manni led the state police during his administration by conducting an internal restructuring; the creation of two new units, the Traffic Safety Unit and the Special Victims Unit; commencing plans to build the agency’s first new barracks since 1931, the consolidated Southern Barracks; overhauling the agency’s promotional process; and conducting the pilot program of body-worn camera systems, all of which leave the agency poised for future success.
“Col. Manni has been an incredible partner in our administration’s efforts to build safer, stronger communities,” said McKee. “We wish him well in his next endeavor, as he works to support and strengthen his own hometown of South Kingstown.”
The governor is considering Manni’s successor and will make an announcement prior to his departure.
Cassius Shuman is a PBN staff writer. Contact him at Shuman@PBN.com. You may also follow him on Twitter @CassiusShuman.