City Manager Deron McCormick 

Deron McCormick

City Manager

Deron L. McCormick serves as the Chief Administrative Officer of the City of Sumter. He is responsible for leading the city’s leadership team as well as the day to day operations including all city departments and employees, strategic initiatives, and the annual budget and financial management. He is also responsible for the city’s utilities, as well as program and policy development alternatives and recommendations for the Mayor and City Council’s consideration. He is the sole employee of the Mayor and City Council and serves at their pleasure.

Deron began his career in public service with the City of Sumter in 1995 serving as the Administrative Services Manager and was then promoted to Assistant to the City Manager in 1997. In 2001, he was again promoted to Assistant City Manager for Administration and Finance. In April of 2005, he was appointed by City Council to the position of City Manager.

Deron is a life-long resident native of Sumter and is an honor graduate of Thomas Sumter Academy. He received an Associate Degree from USC-Sumter, a Bachelor of Science Degree in Finance from USC-Aiken, and a Master of Public Administration Degree in Public Personnel Management from Troy State University. He has attended the National Security Forum at Air War College at Maxell Air Force Base and is a graduate from the South Carolina Executive Institute (April 2005), Leadership Sumter (Class X), the Tuomey Fellows Program, and Leadership Sumter-Next Steps (Class One).

Deron is a Past President of the South Carolina City & County Management Association and has served on its Board of Directors. He is the Chairman of the South Carolina City & County Management Association’s Scholarship Committee and serves on its Foundation Board. He is also a member of the International City/County Management Association. In addition to belonging to the Rotary Club of Sumter-Palmetto, he is a member of the Board of the Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce, the Shaw–Sumter Community Council, the Sumter County Development Board and is the Treasurer of the Support of Shaw Committee.

He is currently the Honorary Commander for the 20th Fighter Wing. Deron has also served in the past as the Honorary Commander of the 20th Fighter Wing Aeromedical-Dental Squadron and the 20th Fighter Wing Mission Support Squadron, both of Shaw Air Force Base.

Deron is a State Constable and is a member of the South Carolina Law Enforcement Officers Association. He has served for years as a teacher for an adult Bible class and has volunteered as a hunter education instructor.

Deron is married to the former Stephanie Winstead and they have two children: Drake (24) and Marley (20). They are members of Crosspoint Baptist Church.

Assistant City Manager Al Harris 

Al Harris

Assistant City Manager

Al Harris has been employed with the City of Sumter for more than 42 years. During his employment, he has risen through the ranks having served as Assistant Superintendent of Water and Sewer, Director of Engineering, Public Services Director and is currently serving as Assistant City Manager of Public Services and Utilities. 

Al Harris oversees all of the Public Services and Utility Departments including Water Treatment Plants, Wastewater Treatment Plant and Operations, Water and Sewer Distribution, Stormwater Operations, Public Works, Engineering, Mechanical Maintenance, Construction, Electrical Maintenance, Parks (including Riley Park), Gardens, Residential and Commercial Sanitation, and Recycling. Public Services and Utility departments comprise the largest workgroup in the City of Sumter and are made up of twelve departments with more than 180 employees. 

Al Harris is a 1972 graduate of Central Carolina with a Degree in Civil Engineering Technology. He has extensive knowledge and provides exceptional leadership and insight in a very technical and critical area. Prior to beginning his career with the City of Sumter, Al worked with the South Carolina Department of Transportation.

The City of Sumter has expanded greatly and made tremendous advancements during the past four decades due largely to Al’s leadership and hard work. Major expansions to Swan Lake Iris Gardens, Riley Ball Park, the Public Services Complex, and multiple new public parks have been created. Perhaps the most remarkable improvements have been realized in Sumter’s utility system. There have been three new water plants established, including multiple deep wells, several major expansions to the Wastewater Plant, including the establishment of the heat drying facility, and the overall recapitalization of the water and sewer distribution system.

Al is well respected by his peers and professionals within the state of South Carolina for his knowledge and leadership in the engineering and utility fields. Al is a longtime member of the Kiwanis Club, having served in multiple leadership roles within the club, and he is a member of the South Carolina City & County Management Association.

Al is married to Marguerite Corbett Harris and has one daughter, Erin. They are members of Paxville Baptist Church.

Assistant City Manager Howie Owens

Howie Owens

Assistant City Manager

Howie Owens is the Assistant City Manager for Administration. He has been with the City of Sumter for just under a decade. Howie began his career at the City as Support Services Manager in 2011. Shortly thereafter, he moved into the role of Downtown Development Manager, where the City’s historic downtown saw extensive growth in the form of new retail shops, restaurants, and welcomed a national flag Hyatt Place Hotel. In February 2017, Howie became the Assistant to the City Manager in addition to his role as Downtown Development Manager. Howie was promoted to the role of Assistant City Manager for Administration in December 2019 where he works alongside City Manager, Deron McCormick helping with day to day operations of the City.

Prior to working with the City of Sumter, Howie worked as a Commercial Banker at the National Bank of South Carolina, now known as Synovus Bank. He graduated from Laurence Manning Academy and went on to earn a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration from the University of South Carolina and a Master of Business Administration from Columbia Southern University. He is also a graduate of the South Carolina Economic Development Institute, the Local Government Leadership Institute, Leadership Sumter (Class 26), the Tuomey Fellows Program, and Leadership Sumter-Next Steps (Class Two).

Howie was recently named in the inaugural Top 20 Professionals Under 40 of Sumter, Lee, & Clarendon Counties by The Sumter Item and the Chamber of Commerce. He is a member of the South Carolina City & County Management Association. Howie is a Past-President of the Rotary Club of Sumter-Palmetto, Past Chairman and current member of the United Way of Sumter, Clarendon & Lee Counties Advisory Board, and a member of the Salvation Army Advisory Board.  

Howie was born and raised in Sumter, SC. He and his wife, Julia Sims-Owens of Charleston, have been married for 11 years. They have two children, Sims (7) and Anna-Jane (4). They are members of Bethesda Church of God.