The town of Star Valley is located in Northern Gila County and contains 36 square miles of land within its incorporated boundaries, whereas the community’s planning area contains about 100 square miles. Currently, both public and private lands are included. Star Valley’s elevation is approximately 5,150 feet and is nearly surrounded by the Tonto National Forest. The Town is located south of the Mogollon
Rim and north of the Sonoran Desert, which comprises a portion of central and southern Gila County. Immediately west of the community is the incorporated Town of Payson.
The earliest inhabitants of the northern region of Gila County are believed to have arrived here around ten thousand years ago. Mogollon culture eventually moved into the region from the east about 300 B.C. followed by the Anasazi from the north and the Hohokam from the south. It is estimated that about 1,000 sites in the Star Valley area were inhabited over the time period from 600 and 1200 A.D. The Mogollons generally lived in villages, hunted, and grew various crops in gardens. Eventually, by about 1500 A.D., the Mogollon culture had been absorbed into other tribes living in the area.One group, who lived in the area and known as the “Ancient Ones”, had a protrusion on the back on their heads referred to as an occipital bun. According to Penny Minturn, who is the advising archaeologist for the Northern Gila County Historical Society, this made them unique from the other prehistoric people who had lived in the area including the Anasazi, Mogollon, Salado, Sinagua, and Hohokam.Once the Mogollon culture disappeared, the Apaches came onto the scene. The Apache culture emphasized hunting more than gardening and were, therefore, more nomadic in nature. The Tonto Apache tribe still maintains a reservation near Star Valley, just to the south of Payson.February of 1863 saw the establishment of the Arizona Territory, but it would not be until 1876 when the area would see its first white settler. By 1878, a few miners were working the nearby hills and more settlers began to migrate to the area. Cattle ranches were also being established at this time. The miners and military were responsible for the early development of roads into the region.The last major battle between the United States military and the Apaches occurred north of Star Valley and just into the southern portion of Coconino County. The engagement is referred to as the Battle of Big Dry Wash and took place in 1882.
Area residents have participated in this country’s major conflicts since World War I. In more recent times, Star Valley became an active participant in the Cold War when a seismological observatory was constructed east of Town on forest service land (Circa 1963). The purpose of this facility was to monitor underground nuclear testing by the Soviets and Chinese. The site is no longer operational and has been abandoned.
Belle McDaniel is a lifelong resident of Star Valley and Payson. She grew up in Star Valley and graduated from Payson High…
The Town Manager/Attorney works closely with the Town Council to define and accomplish strategic goals and objectives. Meets with and advises the Town Council Members on matters relating to Town operations and policies including legal matters. Presents the Town’s operating budget to the Town Council for approval. Meets with members of the public on matters of relevance to the Town and promotes and establishes inter-governmental relations with other towns and cities, public and private organizations. Communicates orally and in writing with citizens, the press, Commissions and Town Council Members to solve problems, answer questions and provide accurate information. Prepares, directs and reviews the preparation of legal opinions, drafts ordinances, resolutions, contracts, deeds, leases and other legal documents. Responsible for the overall direction and coordination of staff.
My name is Tina Woody, and I am the Finance Administrator for the Town of Star Valley. I have a Bachelor of Science Degree in Accounting. Early in my career, my experience occurred in the private sector as a CFO for a manufacturing company and operating as a Comptroller for a Golf Course. Later in my career, I acquired municipal experience as a Budget Analyst.
I enjoy the beauty and serenity of the Rim Country. I especially love our lakes, forest hiking, camping, and most of all, fishing! I am happy to be here in Star Valley, enjoying the opportunities to serve our citizens and meet the challenges as a Finance Administrator.
The Finance Department provides financial services and information to the public, auditors, the Town Council, and the Town Manager.
The Financial Administrator is fiscally accountable for the accounting, procurement, payroll, utility billing, and customer service activities. Responsibility for debt management, banking services, and investment management. In addition, the Finance Administrator prepares the annual budget, monitors, researches and administers the annual town budget and capital improvement program.
I was born and raised in “The Crown City” of Coronado, California. Coronado is home to the famous Hotel del Coronado, and setting of my favorite film classic, “Some Like It Hot”. In 2003, my daughter and I moved to Payson on – what was supposed to be – a temporary basis. I ending up falling in love with the area, and purchased my home in Star Valley in 2004. In my free time (what’s that?), I love hanging out with family and friends, attending local plays and concerts, going to the movies, and reveling in the amazing beauty of the Rim Country. My 20+ years of experience as an administrative assistant / executive secretary in various fields, has prepared me for this challenging, never a dull moment, position. I enjoy the variety of work, and I am so grateful to be working for the Town of Star Valley
~ The Town Clerk works closely with the Town Manager/Attorney and Town Council to define and establish goals and objectives. Posts and advertises official meetings, public hearings, bids, maintains affidavits of publication and posting in accordance with Arizona Revised Statutes and Open Meeting Law Guidelines. Maintains official Town records, including ordinances, resolutions, elections, policy issue resolutions, Council Action Reports, agendas, minutes and contracts. Works with a variety of officials representing the State and County government in the coordination of activities related to the Town. Acts as legal assistant to Town Manager/Attorney for legal Town business including photo enforcement. Works closely with Town Manager/Attorney and Finance Administrator in the development and administration of the Town budget. Acts as Accounts Payable Clerk for the Town and other duties as required. Provides leadership direction, mentoring and training for staff.