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.

Sarah G. Williams 

Human Resources


Sarah began with the Town as Town Clerk/ Human Resources Specialist, in July 2020. Sarah holds a Masters of Public Administration from UNCW with a Coastal Policy & Management Concentration.  Additionally, she completed the Municipal County Administration (MCA) certification program from the School of Government at UNC Chapel Hill and is a North Carolina Certified Municipal Clerk. 

Sarah, a Swansboro, North Carolina native, is a long-time volunteer with the N.C. Coastal Federation. She enjoys spending time with her dogs at the beach, East Carolina University (her alma mater) football games in the fall, and reading a good book.