GovLove is a podcast about the people, policies and profession of local government. From Mayors and City Managers to interns and everyone in between, we interview the people making a difference in their communities to learn about the great work being done at the local level. GovLove is brought to you by Engaging Local Government Leaders (ELGL).
Improving access to city programs online. Erin Hattersley, Manager at Google.org, and Maegen Fisher, Program Manager Fellow, joined the podcast to talk about how Google is partnering with the City of Boulder, Colorado and the goals of the Fellowship Program. Google.org launched the Fellowship Program to bring small teams of Google employees into nonprofits and local governments to provide six months of pro bono work. Fellows use their technical expertise in product management, software engineering and UX design. Host: Alyssa Dinberg
Human Resources as a strategic partner. Kylie Bayer, the Human Resources Manager for the City of McMinnville, Oregon, joined the podcast to share the issues and trends that she sees affecting the human resources industry in local government. From pay equity to sabbaticals, and why City Managers should bring HR to the executive leadership team. Kylie also gave a preview of #ELGL20, ELGL's Annual Conference in Portland this May. Host: Kirsten Wyatt
Cloud-based first responder dispatch. Matt Polega, the Co-Founder and Head of Marketing at Mark43, joined the podcast to talk about how technology can improve public safety. He discussed the importance of computer aided dispatch and the flexibility that being cloud-based provides. Mark also talked about how public safety agencies can work better together and what he would change about the procurement process. Host: Kirsten Wyatt
The year in review. Four of the regular GovLove hosts teamed up to hand out awards and recap the fourth year of a podcast about local government. Kirsten, Alyssa, Javon, and Ben all selected five of their favorite episodes to honor with the most prestigious award in local government podcasting, a GovieLovie. The hosts also shared their favorite holiday desserts and what they are looking forward to in 2020. Hosts: Kirsten Wyatt, Ben Kittelson, Alyssa Dinberg, & Javon Davis The Picks Kirsten Leadership & Scenario Planning with Matt Finch Near the Top Report with Leisha Dehart-Davis & Kimberly Nelson Civic Innovation & Tech in Toronto with Paula Kwan Family Ties in Charleston, SC with Former Mayor Joe Riley & Citibot's Bratton Riley Open Government & Innovation at Guilford County, NC with Jason Jones Ben Chief Innovators Studio at CityLab DC Tackling Blight & Innovation with Terrance Smith, Mobile, AL Rethinking the Library in Hillsboro, OR with Stephanie Chase & Hillary Ostlund Starting as a City Manager & Unique Local Governments with Martha Bennett Communicator to Candidate in Appleton, WI with Chad Doran Javon CivicPride with Pam Davis, Boulder, CO Politics & Administration Career Paths with Sarah Moss Legal Challenges to Parking Enforcement with Shawnte Raines & Matthew Dicianni Policing & Drones with Chief Gary Jenkins, Pullman, WA Community Healing with Melissa Glaser Alyssa A Taste of Tennessee: Hot Chicken & Local Government Operationalizing Racial Equity in Austin, TX with Brion Oaks Life Coaching with Meredith Hauck, Merriam, KS Childcare for Public Meetings with Politisit Priority Based Budgeting with Chris Fabian, ResourceX
Urbanist, Designer and Technologist. Patrick McDonnell joined the podcast to talk about his career path, which started in urban planning, to serving on Innovation Teams in Austin, Texas and Anchorage, Alaska. He talked about the role of a designer, skills that local government needs and the importance of user experience. Patrick also shared some of the projects he worked on like improving access to food stamps in Anchorage. Host: Kirsten Wyatt
Engaging families in civic activities. Rachel Sowray, the Founder of Politisit, joined the podcast to talk about encouraging parents to participate in public meetings. Politisit reimburses parents and other caregivers for child care costs while they attend meetings and activities. Rachel also talked about her time as a Federal Prosecutor in Oregon and what inspired her to start Politisit. Host: Kirsten Wyatt
Running for office as a city employee. Chad Doran, the Communications Coordinator for Appleton, Wisconsin, joined the podcast to talk about his decision to run for Mayor. He discussed why he thinks his current role has prepared him to be Mayor and what he wants to do once he's in office. Chad also shared his accomplishments as spokesman for the City and how he has to work with every department in Appleton. Host: Kent Wyatt
Public works to city management. Todd Feland, the City Administrator for Grand Forks, North Dakota, joined the podcast to talk about partnering on projects with the University of North Dakota and the impact of the college on the city. He also shared his career path into local government, which started in public works. This episode was recorded from the 2019 ICMA Conference in Nashville, TN. Host: Alyssa Dinberg
Working to protect the health and social well-being of Houstonians. Stephen Williams, the Director of the Health Department in Houston, Texas, joined the podcast to talk about the role of the health departments in the local government landscape and the services they provide in Houston, like their See to Succeed initiative. He shared how they work toward health equity and the root causes of health problems. Stephen also talked about the Health Department's role in responding to natural disasters. Host: Ben Kittelson
Building a responsible vacation rental market. Philip Minardi, the Director of Policy Communications at Expedia Group, joined the podcast to talk about the short term rental industry and local policy regulating the vacation rental market. He shared what cities are doing it well, setting responsible limits and building a policy that ensures compliance and even collects taxes. Host: Alyssa Dinberg
Making sure residents have the opportunity to thrive. Dow Constantine, the Executive of King County, Washington, shares his path to public service and the work King County has done to be an employer of choice. He also shared the initiatives they have undertaken to address the challenges of climate change and his love of the Seattle music scene. Host: Kirsten Wyatt
First Town in the First State. Ann Marie Townshend, the City Manager of Lewes, Delaware, joined the podcast to talk about her career path and what it's like to manage the oldest community in Delaware. She talked about how she started her career in planning and what it took to get the experience she needed to take the step to become a City Manager. This episode was recorded from the 2019 ICMA Conference in Nashville, TN. Host: Kirsten Wyatt
Moving forward with confidence and clarity. Meredith Hauck, Assistant City Administrator in Merriam, Kansas, joined the podcast to talk about her side work as life coach. She shared her approach to leadership, self care and positive energy. She also talked about her career in local government and advice for communicating with people in the workplace. This episode was recorded from the 2019 ICMA Conference in Nashville, TN. Host: Alyssa Dinberg
Celebrating municipal innovation from California to Israel. Brent Stockwell and Amanda Daflos took over GovLove from the CityLab gathering in Washington, DC to talk innovation with four different guests. Beth Blauer is the Executive Director of GovEx at Johns Hopkins University (4:10). Tracy Colunga is the Chief Innovation Officer in Long Beach, CA (29:10). Itai Eiges is the Director of a new initiative called Hazira that will support innovation teams in Israel (51:50). Jason Reisdorfer is Director of Innovation & Technology for Sioux Falls, SD (77:30). This episode was recorded from the Chief Innovators Studio at 2019 CityLab in Washington, DC. Hosts: Brent Stockwell & Amanda Daflos
Behind the scenes of recruiting a City Manager. Mayor Rick Rogers from the City of Newberg, Oregon joined the podcast to talk about how they are approaching hiring a new City Manager. He describes the community and what the City Council is looking for in a new manager. Mayor Rogers also shared his path into public service. Host: Kirsten Wyatt
Transitioning into a new leadership role. Martha Bennett, the City Manager of Lake Oswego, Oregon, joined the podcast to talk about her first two months on the job. She also talked about her time leading two unique local government agencies Metro, a regional government for the Portland area, and the Columbia River Gorge Commission. Host: Ben Kittelson
Career advice, elected office and transportation all with a side of hot chicken. Four guests come on the podcast to talk about local government in the State of Tennessee and share a meal of Nashville Hot Chicken with GovLove. Eric Stuckey is the City Administrator of Franklin, TN. Brenda Wynn is the County Clerk for Davidson County, TN. Bill Purcell served as the Mayor of Nashville from 1999 to 2007. Felix Castrodad is the Director of Planning & Grants for the Nashville Metropolitan Transit Authority. This episode was recorded live from the 2019 ICMA Conference in Nashville, Tennessee. Hosts: Alyssa Dinberg & Kirsten Wyatt
Delivering services in a better, faster, and more efficient way. Author Ed Henschel joined the podcast to talk about his career in local government and his new book, which is a practical guide to municipal service consolidation. Ed describes the different types of consolidation and shared service delivery, real world examples and his experience with navigating consolidation. Book: Municipal Shared Service and Consolidation Handbook Host: Kirsten Wyatt
Tackling tough policy questions with citizens. Linn Davis from Healthy Democracy joined the podcast to talk about the work of Healthy Democracy and how they use citizen juries to inform decisions. He also shared how they have worked with local governments like Milwaukie, Oregon to engage citizens on the decision on what to pay elected officials. Host: Alyssa Davis
Managing an international city. Tommy Gonzalez, the City Manager of El Paso, Texas, joined the podcast for a wide ranging interview. He talked about his career path, which started with 22 years in the US Army, how he revamped the El Paso budget process and the complexities of running a community on the border. He also shared how he has supported process improvement and what it took to win quality awards at two different organizations. Host: Ben Kittelson
Reliable insights for policy makers. Two guests join the podcast to talk about best practices in local government communications, using social media and finding better ways to measure resident opinion. Lisa Holder is the Communications Officer for the City of Sanford, Florida and shared her approach to keeping residents informed. Rachel Rembrandt the Head of Customer Success for ZenCity shared how their platform uses artificial intelligence and data from different social media platforms to gather insights for policy makers. Host: Javon Davis
Tackling complex challenges affecting Toronto residents. Paula Kwan the Director of the Civic Innovation Office for the City of Toronto joined the podcast to talk about leading an Innovation Team and driving culture change in an organization. Paula discussed her career path, which started in Toronto's technology sector, and working on issues like translation for residents that speak many languages. Host: Ben Kittelson
Democratizing data science. Two members of the Civis Analytics team join the podcast to talk about their work and engaging with local governments around Census 2020. Mo Cheeks is a Sr. Business Development Manager, and former Madison, WI Council Member, and Christopher Dick is the Managing Director of Civis Analytics. They talked about using data in a Census outreach campaign. Host: Kent Wyatt
Recognizing communities for civic engagement, collaboration, inclusiveness and innovation. Rebecca Trout, the Program Director of the All-America City Award & Membership, joined the podcast to talk about the National Civic League's work. She shared the history of the All-America City Award and stories from some of the communities they have recognized. Host: Javon Davis
Reinventing fiscal analytics. Chris Fabian, the Co-Founder of ResourceX, joined the podcast to talk about his work with local governments and improving how they prioritize the services they provide. Chris shared why ResourceX was started and examples from communities doing priority based budgeting. He also talked about government as a platform and starting a city from scratch on the moon. Host: Alyssa Dinberg
Data equity and local solutions. Dr. Eric Trevan, public administration faculty at Evergreen State College, joined the podcast to talk about economic development and analytics. He talked about his career path, which included time in local government and leading an economic development agencies, as well as the perspective of Native American communities. Host: Javon Davis
An empathy-driven approach to solving problems and serving everyone. Ryan Dowd the Executive Director of Hesed House, a homeless shelter in Aurora, Illinois joined the podcast to talk about serving people experiencing homelessness. Ryan talked about his book, A Librarian's Guide to Homelessness, and his training for libraries on how to work with challenging homeless patrons. He also dispelled myths around homelessness and discussed different policy approaches. Host: Kent Wyatt
Using mobile messaging to connect with hard-to-count populations. Perla Ni is the Founder and CEO of CommunityConnect Labs, the Census Outreach Project, and GreatNonprofits. She joined the podcast to talk about how local governments can reach all of their residents for the upcoming census. She shared how it's important to meet people where they are and how the Census Outreach Project can help. Host: Javon Davis
Building and sustaining a culture of equity. Brion Oaks, the Chief Equity Officer for the City of Austin, Texas, joined the podcast to talk about how they make racial equity actionable. He shared how they work to create a shared understanding around the history of segregation and discrimination in Austin and how old policies still impact the city today. Plus he described how the equity office works with departments to examine what they do with a racial equity lens and include that value in their work and budgets. Host: Ben Kittelson
Managing beaches in an era of climate change. Two guests joined the podcast to discuss shoreline management at the local level. First, Dr. Robert Young from the Program for the Study of Developed Shorelines discussed a recent report that they published which did a cost-benefit analysis of buying out property owners in North Topsail Beach, NC versus maintaining the shoreline. Then Greg "Rudi" Rudolph, the Shoreline Protection Manager for Carteret County, NC, talked about his day to day work, the mechanics of beach renourishment, and his perspective on the report. Rudi also shared how they plan for sea level rise. Read the report: Coastal Hazards & Targeted Acquisitions, A Reasonable Shoreline Management Alternative Host: Ben Kittelson
Designing better government. Earlier this summer GovLove hosted a live recording at the Code for America Summit in Oakland, California. Three guests joined to talk about trends in local government and how they interact with data and technology in their organization. Warren Logan is the Policy Director of Mobility & Interagency Relations in Oakland, CA; Laura Biediger is a Community Engagement Strategist in Durham, NC; and Stephanie Chase is the Director of Libraries for Hillsboro, OR. Host: Kirsten Wyatt
Analytics and open data. Jason Jones, the Analytics and Innovation Manager for Guilford County, North Carolina, joined the podcast to talk about his work and career path. Jason shared what it took to set up a data program at Guilford County, how they have partnered with universities on projects and the importance of adding context to data. He also talked about his career path, creating his current role and how working in human resources has informed his career. Host: Ben Kittelson
Helping cities and counties listen to their employees. Dr. Leisha DeHart-Davis joined the podcast to talk about the University of North Carolina School of Government's Workplaces Initiative. She shared her research into public sector organizational dynamics and how managers can make their employees feel valued and part of a community.
Data for good. Three people joined the podcast to talk about the 2020 Census and ways that local governments can ensure their communities get counted. They are all working with the Census Opportunity Project a process for engaging government, communities, and the technology industry to create digital tools related to the Census. Denice Ross is a Fellow in Residence for the Beeck Center for Social Impact & Innovation; Lorena Molina-Irizarry is the Director of Operations of Census Open Innovation Labs; and Drew Zachary is the Co-Director of Census Opportunity Project.
Public service and civil rights. A father-son duo joined the podcast to talk about their different paths working with local government. Former Mayor Joe Riley led the City of Charleston, SC for 40 years and was involved in redeveloping downtown Charleston and starting the International African American Museum. Bratten Riley is the Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Citibot, a software platform that allows residents to text their local government for information and for organizations to keep residents informed.
Sharing ideas, experiences and stories. Mac Prichard the President of Prichard Communications and Founder of Mac's List joined the podcast to talk about local government communications and job searching. He talked about how communications plans need to be strategic and align with the goals of the organization. Mac also discussed his "Find Your Dream Job" podcast and the skills of job searching.
To chalk or not to chalk. Two lawyers from Ancel Glink joined the podcast to talk about the recent court ruling outlawing the use of chalk to enforce parking requirements. ShawnTe Raines, Partner, and Matthew DiCianni, Associate, walked through the case and the implications for local governments. They also touched on a few other legal issues at the local level that have their attention.
Strategy, planning, storytelling, innovation. Matt Finch joined the podcast to talk about his work with libraries and other government entities on planning for the future. In this wide ranging interview he shared his path into doing this work, becoming future ready and tools for growth and change.
The youngest female Mayor in the country. Mayor Tara Campbell from the City of Yorba Linda, California joined the podcast to talk about her two roles in local government, serving as Mayor of her hometown and working as Chief of Staff for Orange County Supervisor Donald Wagner. Mayor Campbell talked about what led her to local government, why she wanted to run for office and what she works on as a Chief of Staff. She also shared how her two roles influence one another and the issues facing cities in Orange County, CA.
Empowering new leaders. Niel Laudati,Legislative and Public Affairs Director for the City of Springfield, OR, joined the podcast to talk about how the City is working to empower under-represented leaders. Through their City Link program participants meet leaders from different departments, learn about local government and build their resume for serving on boards or running for office. Niel also shared his career path in local government and his passion for Springfield.
Linking theory to television. Dr. Erin Borry from the University of Alabama at Birmingham is teaching ethics in a creative way, by using the show Parks & Recreation. Scenes involving your favorite City of Pawnee employees are great case studies for understanding the dilemmas that public servants can face. Dr. Borry shares why she wanted to use the show in her classroom and examples of what students learn.
Solving problems. Terrance Smith, the Director of the Innovation Team in the City of Mobile, Alabama, joined the podcast to talk about innovation, working with departments and taking on blight. Terrance shared the process the i-Team went through to get a handle on the problem of blight and then how to address it, which eventually led to a change in state law. He also talked about how they communicate about their work and how they bring in other city staff to explain their process.
From borough and township to municipality. Mayor Liz Lempert joined the podcast for a wide ranging interview on consolidating governments and providing compost service in Princeton, New Jersey. Mayor Lempert shared her path into elected office and winning the 2018 Mayors Challenge for their composting initiative. She also walked through the process of consolidating Princeton Township with Princeton Borough and the impact it has had on both the community and government operations.
Examining the inclusiveness of cities. Xavier Persad, Sr. Legislative Counsel for the Human Rights Campaign, joined the podcast to talk about the Municipal Equality Index. Each year cities are rated based on non-discrimination laws, the municipality as an employer and the city leadership's public position on equality. He also shared what cities have made strides on the index and what policies cities should look at to improve how inclusive they are.
Sustainable innovation. Nick Kittle, Government Innovation & Performance Coach and author, shares his lessons on leadership, innovation and improving local government. He talked about his experience as a Chief Innovation Officer, his book Sustainovation and the work he's doing now for Cartegraph. From building momentum to not being afraid to get fired, Nick has great advice for those wanting to make a difference.
Advancing inclusive local government. In honor of Pride Month, Pam Davis, Sr. Management Analyst for the City of Boulder, Colorado and the Leader of CivicPRIDE joined the podcast to talk about empowering LGBTQIA+ leadership in local government. CivicPRIDE is the first nationally recognized LGBTQIA+ professional association for local government management. Pam shared her coming out story and why a group like CivicPRIDE is needed in local government. She also discussed what organizations can do to be more inclusive of the LGBTQIA+ community.
Institutionalized inequity in hiring. Dr. Shannon Portillo from the University of Kansas discusses how we have to challenge the assumption that merit-based hiring practices are "neutral." She and a co-author argue in a recent journal article that those practice can actually reinforce the preference of white men in public organizations. The article argues that if organizations want to encourage a diverse workforce they need to challenge these long standing hiring practices.
Leading (r)evolution in public libraries. Stephanie Chase, Library Director, and Hillary Ostlund, Library Manager, from the Hillsboro, Oregon public library joined the podcast. They talked about how they are adapting their expectations of employees and the service to patrons to improve customer service. In this wide ranging interview they covered everything from throwing out the organizational chart to night libraries and serving homeless patrons.
Measuring success. A trio of strategic planning and performance measurement experts joined the podcast to talk about their work: Ed Foley the Performance Management Analyst for the City of Olathe, Kansas, Josh Edwards the Strategy & Performance Director for the City of Durham, North Carolina, and Laura Chandler a Director at Clearpoint Strategy. Ed and Josh both shared their organizations' journey and Laura added the perspective of a software platform geared for strategic plans and performance measures. This interview was recorded from the 2019 Transforming Local Government Conference in Reno, Nevada.
Public safety and collaboration. Gary Jenkins, the Police Chief for Pullman, Washington, shared how his department uses drones to enhance their police work and improve operations. Chief Jenkins talked about how they started their program, training staff and how they collaborate with other city departments and organizations. He also shared his career path to becoming a police chief and the unique challenges of policing in a college town. This interview was recorded from the 2019 Transforming Local Government Conference in Reno, Nevada.
Unleash employees. Tom Darling the Division Manager of Public Service University at the City of Albuquerque, NM joined the podcast to talk about training staff and changing culture. He discusses why "entrepreneurship" is a useful trait and why it's important to bring to local government. He also talks about motivation and inspiring employees int he workplace. This interview was recorded from the 2019 Transforming Local Government Conference in Reno, Nevada.
Budgeting in a college town. Barrett Warren the Budget & Strategic Planning Manager for the City of Auburn, AL joined the podcast to talk about her path into local government and working in a college town. She shared how Auburn is balancing the demands of housing a big college student population with maintaining its small town aesthetic. She also explained "War Eagle" and how the city is working to communicate about the budget. This interview was recorded from the 2019 Transforming Local Government Conference in Reno, Nevada.
Writing legalese for residents. GovLove Legal returns with a discussion of how to write about complex legal topics in a way that is understandable for residents and elected officials. Jenny Kosek, Communications Strategist in West Allis, WI, and David Silverman, Partner at Ancel Glink Law Firm, share their perspectives and tips for taking complex legal topics and communicating them clearly.
Solving real-world problems with data. Three people from the City of New Orleans, Louisiana joined the podcast to talk about how the City uses data and earning a What Works Cities Certification. Melissa Schigoda is the Director of the Office of Performance and Accountability, Eric Ogburn is the Director of Enterprise Information and Jonathan Wisbey is the Chief Technology Officer. They shared how the certification process helped them improve their processes and transitioning their data program from Mayor Landrieu to Mayor Cantrell.
Testing innovative solutions. Adrienne Moretz, Civic Lab Project Manager, and Monica Hernandez, Director of Innovation & Partnerships, joined the podcast to talk about their work for the Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG). They discussed Civic Lab, a program that works with teams from around their region to design and launch pilot projects aimed at regional challenges. In year one they took on "Smart Mobility" and had some innovative approaches to transportation that covered both downtown Sacramento and rural parts of their region. Both guests also shared their career path to local government and their plans for year two of the program. This interview was recorded from the 2019 Transforming Local Government Conference in Reno, Nevada.
Using new technology for sustainability. Diana Robinson, Energy Manager for Manatee County, FL, discussed how they are using drones to support their work on sustainable buildings, communications and more. Diana shared what it was like setting up a drone program and using different types of cameras. This interview was recorded from the 2019 Transforming Local Government Conference in Reno, Nevada.
Lessons for recovery after a large-scale trauma. Author and psychologist Melissa Glaser joined the podcast to talk about how a community deals with traumatic events. She shared her experience working in Newtown, CT after the Sandy Hook shooting. She also discussed lessons for community leaders dealing with tragic events.
Community service. Joe Nail the CEO and Co-Founder of Lead for America joined the podcast to talk about their two-year fellowship program for young leaders in local government. The program takes undergraduate students interested in public service and matches them with organizations in their community. Joe shared his background and why he wanted to start this program. He also explained how local governments can participate and what the experience is like for fellows.
Trends in planning. GovLove was recently at the National Planning Conference for a session all about right-of-way. Local governments hold the public right-of-way in trust for the benefit of the public; but rapid changes in technology, federal policy, and constitutional law are increasing demands for services and challenging local regulatory authority. Experienced local government attorneys, and industry professionals discuss best practices for right-of-way management in the face of emerging challenges. Panelists include: Alan Weinstein, Cleveland State University; Alicia Giudice, San Rafael, CA; Brandon Bordenkircher, Chaddick Institute for Metropolitan Development; Daniel J. Bolin, Ancel Glink; Gail A. Karish, Best Best & Krieger LLP; and Isidro A. Jimenez, San Francisco, CA. This episode was recorded from the 2019 National Planning Conference in San Francisco, CA.
Designing better government. Dan Hon, the Co-Chair for the 2019 Code for America Summit, joined the podcast to talk about the work of Code for America, how he got involved and why technologists should work with governments. Dan also shared some of the agenda they are planning for the conference and tips for attendees.
Local government innovation and faith in public service. Eric March, Strategic Initiatives Analyst for Durham County, NC joined the podcast to discuss Innovate Durham, a partnership program between the County, City of Durham and local startups. Eric shared his path in public service from an engineer to an innovation office. He also discussed his work for a church and compared the similarities of the work to local government. This interview was recorded from the 2019 Transforming Local Government Conference in Reno, Nevada.
Two Mayors and a Chief of Staff. Mayor Danene Sorace, former Mayor Rick Gray and former Chief of Staff Pat Brogan joined the podcast to talk about creating and advancing Lancaster's strategic plan. Mayor Gray and Pat Brogan shared the creation of the city's first strategic plan and current Mayor Sorace talked about embracing and continuing to advance the plan. They also shared their paths into public service, the role of Chief of Staff and both mayors' perspectives on leadership.
ELGL Knope Award Winner. Brent Stockwell, the Assistant City Manager of Scottsdale, Arizona, discussed their award-winning park the McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park. He talked about the work that went into winning the ELGL Knope Award, stories from park staff and how they tried to improve their communications strategy during each round of the competition. This podcast was recorded from the 2019 Transforming Local Government Conference in Reno, Nevada.
Civic dreamer and doer. Sarah Moss joined GovLove to talk about her unique career path that has switched between campaign and political roles to administrative roles. She shared what led to her first role in politics and how she ended up in local government. Sarah also discussed her work as a consultant and her professional philosophy.
Engagement and shaping communities. Three guests join the podcast to discuss approaches to neighborhood planning and the work that goes into engaging residents. Mercy Murguia is a Commissioner for Potter County, TX; Dina Newman is the Director of the Center for Neighborhoods at the University of Missouri at Kansas City; and, AJ Fawver is the Planning Director for the City of Lubbock, TX. All three discussed their perspectives on planning and engagement as well as how each of their communities approach neighborhoods.
Purchasing and RFPs. Chris Van Beke the CEO and Co-Founder of Vendor Registry talks about improving the way vendors and governments work together, from updating paper processes to improving communication. Chris also shared his career path to leading a tech company focused on procurement.
Can't be neutral on a moving train. Two members of the leadership team in Iowa City, IA joined the podcast to talk management, recruitment and their path to public service. Geoff Fruin, City Manager, and Ashley Monroe, Assistant City Manager, shared their experiences going through hiring processes and what they look for in hiring leadership positions. Geoff and Ashley also talked about what they are working on, from data driven policing to engagement.
Meeting people where they are. Jay Dawkins the CEO of PublicInput joined the podcast to talk about community engagement and reaching more people through engagement. Jay shared his career path to leading a software company and how they work with local governments. He talked about pitfalls in engagement like the "if you build it, they will come" mistake and why engagement matters.
Diversity in the local government profession. Two professors from the University of North Carolina School of Government share findings from recent research on the diversity of city and county managers. Leisha Dehart-Davis and Kimberly Nelson talked about what they heard from interviewing managers for their "Near the Top" report and the importance of attracting women and people of color to local government management.
Using and regulating drones in government. GovLove Legal is back. Derke Price and Erin Pell from the law firm Ancel Glink join the podcast to talk about the regulations around drones. From how the law varies from state to state to how the Federal government treats drones they cover what you need to know. Derke and Erin also share examples of how local governments are using drones to support their work.
Shift Indy. Ken Clark the Chief Information Officer for the City of Indianapolis and Marion County, Indiana discussed his career path and his work updating the organization's website. Ken shared how he got buy in for a new approach to the website, the work that went into bringing it into the 21st century and how they improved the user experience. Ken also talked about the importance of understanding finances and how he cut his departmental budget while also taking on this enormous project.
Engagement in Bologna, Italy. The Deputy Mayor of Bologna, Matteo Lepore, talked about how his city won an Engaged Cities award for their work engaging residents with local government. By engaging with residents the City is able to bring people into the process of shaping public spaces. Learn more from their case study: Co-Creating Urban Commons.
Finding innovative ideas with residents not just for them. Tulsa, Oklahoma has been empowering their residents to address longstanding or emerging civic challenges in partnership with city staff. James Wagner, the Chief Financial Officer and former Chief of Performance Strategies and Innovation, talked about their Urban Data Pioneers and Civic Innovation Fellowship programs. Through these programs Tulsa residents can learn about data analysis or human centered design as they bring new ideas into City Hall. The city received an Engaged Cities Award for their efforts.
Celebrating the most effective solutions to engagement. Myung Lee, the Executive Director of Cities of Service, joins the podcast to talk about their Engaged Cities Award, spotlighting solutions from around the world and her winding career path. Myung also shared the work of Cities of Service and how they help Mayors build stronger cities.
Leading Hillsboro. Mayor Steve Callaway from Hillsboro, Oregon joined the podcast to talk about his path into public service, how his city works to attract people into local government and reaching out to the Latino community. Mayor Callaway also discussed his viral social media post on dealing with a racism and his love of the Hillsboro Hops.
Cool things about parks. To celebrate the start of the #ELGLKnope Award contest for the best Park facility in the country we have an interview between Eleanor Wyatt and Bobbi Nance. Eleanor is a 9-year-old that has strong opinions about parks and Bobbi is the President of Recreation Results, a company that uses data and strategy to advise local governments in the parks and recreation sector.
Using scrum in local government. Michelle Thong, the Digital Services Lead at the City of San Jose, CA, joined the podcast to talk innovation, iteration and engaging the tech community. She shared the three innovation behaviors her office works to encourage in the organization and how she works to be a multiplier. Michelle also talked about starting the Code for San Jose brigade and how the City works with volunteers.
Transforming data into action. Miguel Sangalang, Deputy Mayor for Budget & Innovation, and Amanda Daflos, Innovation Team Director, joined GovLove to talk about their work at the City of Los Angeles, California. They discussed earning the top level of the What Works Cities Certification and how they are pairing budget with innovation. They also shared why they think data is important and how the City uses data to make decisions.
Measuring employee engagement. Bob Lavigna the Director of the Institute for Public Sector Employee Engagement at CPS HR joined the podcast to talk about why organizations should take employee engagement seriously. He argues that there is a business case to keeping employees engaged at the workplace and that the best organizations have recognized this. He also shared his path into working with governments and the value of employee surveys.
Communications and media relations. Chris Floore, the Assistant to the County Manager for Public Affairs in Macon-Bibb County, Georgia, joined the podcast to talk about his work and building relationships with the media. Chris discussed the importance of the public information officer role and how he prepares staff to work with the media. He also responded to a report from the Society of Professional Journalists says public information officers are making it more difficult to get access to interviews and information.
Battling disparities through planning. Two people from the City of Minneapolis, MN join the podcast to talk about the hottest comprehensive plan in the country, Minneapolis 2040. Heather Worthington is the Director of Long Range Planning and Paul Mogush is the Manager of Community Planning for Minneapolis. Heather and Paul discussed the goals of the new comprehensive plan, which put dealing with racial disparities at the center of their work, and how they engaged the public throughout the process. The new plan will make big changes to land use in the city including eliminating single family zoning and parking minimums.
The best episodes of the year. All five regular GovLove hosts teamed up to hand out awards and recap the year of GovLove. Kirsten, Alyssa, Javon, Kent and Ben all selected four of their favorite episodes to honor with the most prestigious award in local government podcasting, a GovieLovie. In addition to handing out awards, the hosts shared what they hope to cover on the podcast in the future, their favorite holiday food and highlights from ELGL’s 2018. The Top Episodes of the Year: Kirsten #195 Innovation & Equity in Parks & Recreation with Kylie Bayer-Fertterer, Justin Cutler & Peter Cosmiano #236 Local Reporting in San Antonio with iris Dimmick, The Rivard Report #206 The First Lady of Water Cathy Bailey, Greater Cincinnati Water Works #232 The Best of Nextdoor with Jenn Takahashi Javon #179 The Gatekeepers, Chiefs of Staff in Local Government #171 The City of Detroit's Chief Storyteller, Aaron Foley #238 PennDOT Connects with Secretary Leslie Richards & Brian Hare #217 Parkour & Parks with Colin MacDonald, Parkour Visions Alyssa #176 NBC Parks & Rec Memories with Jim O'Heir (Jerry Gergich) #228 Crisis Ready, Building an Invincible Brand with Melissa Agnes #213 University of Alabama Game Day in Tuscaloosa with Mayor Walt Maddox #219 Karen Pinkos, ICMA President & City Manager, El Cerrito, CA Kent #188 NFBPA & Diversity with Christine Edwards & James Gaston #210 Oregon's Most Wired Community - Independence #222 The Poisoned City - Flint's Water & the American Urban Tragedy with Anna Clark #185 Public Service in the NFL & City Management with Tom & Connor Barwin Ben #233 What Government Innovation Really Looks Like with Hana Schank #223 Changing the Local Government Workplace #225 Evaluation & Good Government in Washington, DC with Jenny Reed #193 The Color of Law with Richard Rothstein
Problem solving in government. Brian Platt the Business Administrator of Jersey City, New Jersey joined the podcast to talk about managing the day to day operations of the city, innovation in local government and being named a babe of Jersey City. Brian previously served as the Chief Innovation Officer and he shared the work of the city's i-Team and how they've approached problem solving.
Hungry for democracy. The national non-profit, Pizza to the Polls, tries to make waiting in line to vote a little better. They take reports of long lines from people around the country and then find local pizza places to deliver slices to voters. Scott Duncombe is one of the founders of Pizza to the Polls, he tells the story of how it started and how they delivered over 10,000 pizzas in the 2018 election.
Transportation & engagement. The Pennsylvania Secretary of Transportation, Leslie Richards, and the PennDOT Planning Chief, Brian Hare, join the podcast to talk engagement and the future of transportation. They shared their PennDOT Connects initiative which works to engage Pennsylvania residents before they implement transportation projects. Secretary Richards and Brian also talked about their career paths and how the State works with local governments.
Economic development at the state level. Stefan Pryor, the Secretary of Commerce for the State of Rhode Island, joins the podcast to talk about his work attracting companies to the state. Stefan discussed the policies they've used to turn around Rhode Island's economy. He also shared his career path to the position, which included a stint as Deputy Mayor in Newark, NJ.
The City Hall beat. Iris Dimmick, Senior Reporter at The Rivard Report, talks covering local government in the City of San Antonio, Texas. She talked about the non-profit journalism that The Rivard Report conducts, her path to becoming a reporter and the future of local journalism. Then Iris discussed three propositions that were voted on by residents in November, each had a different impact on the City of San Antonio, including one that targeted the City Manager.
Applying technology to make things better. John Covey, Chief Information Office of Shrewsbury, Massachusetts, joined the podcast to talk about software, local government IT and improving processes. John shared his career path to working at the Town of Shrewsbury, his definition of a technologist and what he sees as trends in the field. He also shared their experience working with ViewPoint Cloud to improve the permitting process.
Putting people first. Mike Sarasti, the Chief Innovation Officer and Director of Innovation & Technology for the City of Miami, Florida, joined the podcast to talk about his role driving innovation and scaling solutions throughout the organization. He discussed his path to becoming a CIO, how they put users first through process design and working with Code for Miami. He also talked about how adding IT to his portfolio has impacted the innovation work in Miami, from training his employees on these tools to using tech as an entry point for process improvement.
Getting the work done. Hana Schank, Public Interest Technology Fellow for New America, joined the podcast to talk about her recently published report on innovation in government. She interviewed problem solvers working across Federal, State and local governments to learn how they are trying to make government services better for residents. From what this field of innovation should be called, what teams across the country look like and common projects that teams are working on, Hana gave more info on what she found in her report. She also talked about the necessity of buy-in from top leadership and the importance of process over technology. Read the report: Getting the Work Done - What Government Innovation Really Looks Like
Quality neighborhood drama. Jenn Takahashi, the chief lurker and founder of the parody account Best of Nextdoor, joined the podcast to talk about sharing the entertaining drama that happens on Nextdoor. Jenn shares what caused her to start the account, what the Nextdoor CEO thinks of it and what it's been like to have the account get so popular.
Budgeting for Outcomes. In his new book Andrew Kleine, the former Budget Director for the City of Baltimore, MD, challenges how local governments budget. He writes about how he changed budgeting in Baltimore to focus on outcomes rather than line items. He joined the podcast to talk about how he learned about outcome budgeting, the process of writing a book, and his career path in government.
LouieStat and changing culture. Daro Mott, the Chief of Performance Improvement for the City of Louisville, Kentucky, joined the podcast to talk about their use of data and focus on process improvement. Daro described Louisville's particular focus on professional development and training employees to change culture. He also shared his path into local government and their work to earn the What Works Cities Certification.
Navigating the Supreme Court decision. Earlier this year the case of Janus v. AFSCME changed part of the relationship between local governments and unions. No longer can cities and counties collect union dues for non-union employees that benefit from union negotiations. Matthew DiCianni from the Chicago based law firm, Ancel Glink, joined the podcast to talk about the role of unions and the impact of the Janus decision.
Talking crisis management and communication. Melissa Agnes, the author of Crisis Ready: Building an Invincible Brand in an Uncertain World, joined the podcast to talk handling crises. Melissa shared her perspective on plans versus programs and the importance of communication.
A lot of preparation and work goes into hosting a Super Bowl. Two communications professionals from the City of Minneapolis, Minnesota shared their story of hosting Super Bowl 52 in their city. Greta Bergstrom is the Communications Director and Jordan Gilgenbach is the Digital Media Relations Coordinator for the City of Minneapolis. They talked about the working with dozens of partners to keep residents and guests informed, how they prepared for cold weather and all the rowdy fans, plus they also described the training and support they got from the Federal government in preparation for the game.
The President of the Greater Providence, Rhode Island Chamber of Commerce, Laurie White, joined the podcast to share how Providence works to attract businesses and entrepreneurs. She talks about how important it is to know your workforce, what businesses are looking for and how she works together with the State Secretary of Commerce.
Good government for the people. Jenny Reed the Director of the Office of Budget & Performance Management for the City of Washington, DC joined the podcast to talk about how they use evaluation and performance management. She shared the work of the Lab @ DC, how they want to make a more data driven budget process and their use of low cost evaluations. Jenny also shared the process of earning the What Works Cities Certification and how that process helped her office and the City improve.
College Football and Local Government. We continue our series on the relationship between local governments and universities. Tom Casady, Director of Public Safety, joined the podcast to talk about the game day atmosphere in Lincoln, the preparation it takes to get ready for the influx of fans and his favorite memories. On Saturdays enough people come to Lincoln to make it the third largest city in the state. Prior to being named Public Safety Director, Tom was the Lincoln Police Chief from 1994-2011.
A panel of local government staff, an elected official and a tech company staffer discussed the changing workplace. They shared their opinions on what they want to see from their employers, how government can better engage with residents and how local government needs to deal with diversity and inclusion. The group also took questions from the audience that hit on the urban-rural divide, the role of elected officials and white male privilege. The panel included: Lacey Beaty, City Council President at Beaverton, OR; Kylie Bayer, Human Resources Manager at McMinnville, OR; Jose Esparza, Community Engagement Specialist at Tualatin Hills Park & Recreation District; Pat Rollens, Public Information Specialist at Corvallis, OR; and Casey Earp, Engagement Manager at Bang the Table. This episode was recorded live from 2018 League of Oregon Cities conference in Eugene, OR.