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County Manager's Office

Phone: 913-715-0725

111 S Cherry, Suite 3300, Olathe, KS 66061

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Assistant County Manager: Joe Waters


Joe Waters joined the County Manager’s Office in 2013 as Assistant County Manager responsible for general government services. Mr. Waters previously served as Johnson County Director of Facilities for 19 years.

An Architecture graduate from the University of Kansas, Mr. Waters has a decade of private sector executive experience in consulting and facilities management nationwide. His extensive public service began in 1982- 86 as an Architect and Assistant Director in the Facilities Planning Office at the University of Kansas. Mr. Waters served Johnson County as Director of Facilities for two periods beginning in 1990. He left for a director position in the Raytheon Inc. organization in 1995, returning to the County in 1998.

Mr. Waters has served on numerous community boards, including Sunflower House Child Abuse Prevention Center, Olathe Economic Development Corp., and the Arts Council of Johnson County, as well as committee work with Mid-America Regional Council, American Institute of Architecture, Public Technology Institute and the National Association of Counties.

He and his wife Nancy are metropolitan Kansas City natives; they have two sons, Ryan and Sean, and reside in Leawood.

Assistant County Manager: Maury Thompson

MauryMaury Thompson became the Assistant County Manager on January 7, 2013, after previously serving as executive director of Johnson County Developmental Supports (JCDS) for five years.

Mr. Thompson began his career at JCDS in January 1986, serving as community living coordinator from 1993-97, and residential supports coordinator from 1997-2001 when he left to become executive director of Tri-Valley Developmental Services in Chanute, Kan. He also served as mayor of Chanute from 2006-07; was a member of the Chanute City Commission (2005-06); and served as president of the Chanute Area Chamber of Commerce and Office of Tourism in 2004.

He returned to Johnson County as executive director of JCDS on April 1, 2007.

Mr. Thompson received his bachelor’s degree in political science and criminal justice with a minor in business administration in 1984 from Mount Mercy College, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and a master’s degree in public administration from Park College Graduate School of Public Affairs, Kansas City, Mo., in 1998.

He, and his wife, Angie, have two daughters, Taylor and Morgan. The family lives in Olathe.

County Leadership


The County Manager, Hannes Zacharias, is the chief administrative officer of Johnson County Government and is responsible for its executive functions:

  • Daily administrative functions of Johnson County Government;
  • Direct and supervise the organizational structure of all offices, the appointed officers and employees, except as otherwise provided by law or as provided in the Charter;
  • Implement the policies of the Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) through the functional divisions and departments of administration;
  • Prepare and submit a recommended annual budget to the BOCC for final adoption and administer the budget after its effective date;
  • Report to, confer with, assist and advise the Chair of the BOCC and make recommendations on all matters concerning the welfare of Johnson County government;
  • Ensure that all ordinances, resolutions, codes, regulations, rules, policies, directions and actions of the BOCC are faithfully enforced, administered, and executed;
  • Attend, or provide appropriate staff to attend, all official BOCC meetings, except those where the continued employment of the County Manager is under consideration;
  • Assist the Chair and the BOCC in the preparation of meeting agendas, resolutions, rules, regulations, policies, and all such other matters as may be requested by the BOCC;
  • Submit to the BOCC and make available to the public periodic annual reports of the financial administrative affairs of Johnson County Government and keep the BOCC advised of the financial conditions and needs of Johnson County Government; and
  • Prepare and submit to the BOCC, annually before May 1, recommendations for a capital improvement and financing program for Johnson County.

The County Manager is assisted by Deputy County Manager Penny Postoak Ferguson, Assistant County Manager Maury Thompson and Bureau Chief Joe Waters, all based in the County Manager's Office. All agencies and departments within the organization maintain either a direct or a functional reporting relationship with the County Manager’s Office, through one of these executives.

County Manager: Hannes Zacharias

Hannes ZachariasHannes Zacharias has been County Manager since August 2009. He joined the management team in 2001 as Assistant County Manager and was promoted to Deputy County Manager in 2005.

As County Manager, Mr. Zacharias serves as the chief administrative officer, coordinating the delivery of services provided by more than 3,800 employees to the County’s nearly 550,000 residents. He also prepares the County’s annual operating and capital budgets totaling more than $810 million.

As head of the county’s management team, Mr. Zacharias is accountable for organizational performance, achievement and service delivery in the daily operations of Johnson County. He also oversees the implementation of policies and directives established by the Johnson County Board of Commissioners.

Mr. Zacharias’ entire career has been in public service, beginning in 1980 when he served as Associate Director and Chief Grants Officer for the Kansas Arts Commission. He has also served as Assistant to the City Manager for Lawrence, Kan.; the City Administrator for Boonville, Mo.; and the City Manager of Hays, Kan.

In his capacity as a local government manager, Mr. Zacharias has served on the:

  • Missouri City/County Management Association Board of Directors;
  • The Kansas City/County Management Association Board of Directors, where he served as President;
  • The Kansas Municipal League Board of Directors; and,
  • Various committees for the International City/County Management Association.

He received the Buford M. Watson Jr. Award for Excellence in Public Administration from the Kansas City/County Management Association  and the Regional Leadership Award from the Mid- America Regional Council (MARC), both in 2007.

Locally, Mr. Zacharias serves on the United Community Services board of advisors, the Greater Kansas City United Way board of directors, and the Heart of America Council Boy Scouts of America Executive Board. He also serves as Co-Chair of the Regional Homeland Security Coordinating Committee.

A native of Dodge City, Kan., Mr. Zacharias received a master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Kansas in 1988 and a bachelor’s degree in General Studies from Wichita State University in 1979.

He and his wife, Marcia, have lived in Johnson County since 2001. They have two daughters, Lydia and Isabel, and a son, Kurt.

Deputy County Manager: Penny Postoak Ferguson

Photo of Deputy County Manager, Penny Postoak FergusonPenny Postoak Ferguson was appointed Deputy County Manager at Johnson County Government on August 19, 2012. She was previously the Assistant County Manager since June 2010.

She came to Johnson County from the City of San Antonio, Texas, where she served as Assistant City Manager for nearly four years. Prior to that, she worked for the City of Overland Park for four years, as a Deputy City Manager and Assistant City Manager. Her career also includes serving as Core Manager/Executive Director of Budget and Research (2000-02) for the Unified Government of Wyandotte County/Kansas City, Kansas, and Assistant City Manager (1997-2000) for the City of Hays, Kansas.

A native of Lawrence, Kansas, Ms. Postoak Ferguson attended Haskell Indian Nations University, located in Lawrence, and is a member of the Choctaw Tribe of Oklahoma. She received her bachelor’s degree in business administration (1992) from the University of Kansas, also in Lawrence, and a master’s degree (1994) in public administration from KU.

Ms. Postoak Ferguson serves on the Board of the United Way of Greater Kansas City and is an International City/County Management Association - Credentialed Manager (ICMA-CM). She also serves on the Olathe Economic Development Council and Overland Park Chamber of Commerce, Government Affairs Committee. Postoak Ferguson is president-elect for the Kansas University City Managers and Trainees alumni organization (KUCIMAT) and serves on the University of Kansas College of Liberal Arts and Sciences advisory board, as well as the ICMA Leadership Advisory Board. She served on the following boards:  Leadership Kansas, United Community Services of Johnson County, San Antonio Sports Foundation, San Antonio Convention and Visitors Bureau, Overland Park Convention and Visitors Bureau, and the Overland Park South Rotary. She is a member of the International City/County Management Association (ICMA), Kansas Association City/County Management (KACM), and National Association of County Administrators (NACA). Ms. Postoak Ferguson also served as Co-Chair for the 2016 ICMA Annual Conference.

She and her husband, Dwight, have a daughter, Peyton. The family lives in Johnson County.