Town Manager & Administration

Matt Zapp

Town Manager

Matt Zapp was appointed Town Manager effective June, 2019.  Before coming to Emerald Isle, Matt served nine years as Town Manager for the Town of Benson in Johnston County, North Carolina.  Prior to Benson, he served five years as Village Administrator in Madison Village, Ohio.  Matt began his public service career as the Parks, Recreation and Public Lands Superintendent along the fresh water coast of Lake Erie in Madison Township, Ohio. He has 16 years of local government experience.

Matt holds a Masters of Public Administration from UNCW with a Coastal Management Concentration.  Additionally, he completed the Public Executive Leadership Academy (PELA) and Municipal County Administration (MCA) certification programs from the School of Government at UNC Chapel Hill. 

He is married to Haley Zapp.  Together, the couple have 6 children and remain quite active in the community. 

Laura Rotchford

Finance Director

Laura began with the Town as Finance Director, in mid-December, 2014.  She is a CPA, and Certified North Carolina Government Finance Officer.  Laura is originally from Michigan, where she started her career in Finance in the automotive industry.   After moving to North Carolina, Laura gained experience in Local Government Finance.  She holds Masters degrees from both East Carolina University and the University of Michigan-Flint.

Laura moved to Swansboro in 2005.  She and her husband, Joe enjoy spending time outdoors, and can usually be found boating or motorcycle riding during the weekends.  They are members of St. Mildred Catholic Church in Swansboro, and have been blessed with five wonderful grandchildren.

Rhonda Ferebee

Town Clerk / Human Resources

Rhonda is Town Clerk / Human Resources Specialist for the Town of Emerald Isle.  She has been responsible for maintaining the Town website since 2001, completing the Leadership Carteret program in that same year.  Rhonda worked as Permit Assistant in the Planning and Inspections Department beginning July 1998, and became Town Clerk in July 2003. Rhonda previously had 15 years of experience in the banking industry in Virginia prior to moving to Carteret County.  She was born and raised in Chesterfield County, Virginia, but having vacationed here on the Crystal Coast since 1980 before moving here full-time, this has seemed like home for a long time. Rhonda is married with two wonderful daughters.