Dear ELGL members,
As I compile this weekly report, Kent is doing holiday baking with the kids. There was a small oven fire, the result of Kent loading all of the cookie batter onto one baking sheet, because they didn’t want to wait for multiple batches, and then the cookies overflowed onto the burner.
The house is freezing cold because all of the doors and windows are open because of the fire, and the smell of burned cookies lingers in the air. Usually I try to steer clear of the kitchen when they bake together, because mishaps like this aren’t uncommon.
As you might guess, their baking causes me great stress, and so taking a moment to write up this report of the amazing contributions our members made this week to ELGL is like a nice little vacation from the chaos that is unfolding in my kitchen. I hope your holiday baking is off to a much better start than ours. Here’s an update on everything we accomplished this week.
— Kirsten Wyatt (@kowyatt) December 19, 2016
What I’m Reading
- The Giver Quartet by Lois Lowry (yes, I know it’s a YA series but I love it anyway).
What I’m Listening To
- Darius Rucker Christmas Album (love me some Hootie)
What I’m Watching
- The Man in the High Castle, Season II (so much dystopia for me this week!)
Oregon Local Government Fellowship
The application period for the Oregon Local Government Fellowship closed last Thursday. In total, we had 46 applicants, representing 34 graduate schools, 23 states, and 13 types of degrees. It was a very competitive pool of applicants and I’m excited to meet the applicants who advance to the interview panels.
Mr. Tuesday, aka Ben DeClue, wrote this great piece about when to go “off the record” with your local reporter. It’s a great blog post and I strongly recommend that you read it, and then share it with your boss or your council. Ben talks to two former newspaper reporters about your local government can work most effectively with local reporters.
Jason Jones is back this week with part two of his “If I Knew Then…” series. This is the summarization of the research he conducted earlier in the fall with words of wisdom from local government professionals.
Bite Size Annual Reporting
Last week, I shared parts 8 and 7 of the 2016 Annual Report. Part 8 reported on conferences and trainings, and part 7 reported on the Morning Buzz, email newsletters and job postings. I’ll continue to release bite-size portions of the annual report so ELGL members can reflect on 2016 and plan ahead for 2017.
Data on Race & Gender in Local Government Leadership
Stacy Schweikhart and I also reached out to the UNC MPA program with the request for graduate student assistance in compiling race and gender data for city managers and mayors. It’s our hope that we’ll be able to launch data collection projects in both North Carolina and Wisconsin in early 2017. We’ll be doing similar outreach to a few other MPA programs to see if they want “in” to this important and interesting research.
We’ve had a members-only Facebook group for a few years now; it’s a fun place to hang out on Facebook and engage with other ELGL members. Each Friday we have a fun “#QOTD” where members share their answers to random questions. This week, we had our biggest QOTD ever, when we asked “what’s your most controversial (non-political) opinion.” ELGL members have really, really strong opinions about really, really random things. It was an interesting discussion, that keeps on entertaining.
Ben McCready launched a really fun new program seeking nominations for the “best” city halls in the nation (I nominated Pasedena, because it’s Pawnee… and also because it’s beautiful). Nominations are due by December 31, so don’t forget to nominate your favorite for ELGL fame and fortune.
2017 Calendar Updates
We also added our known 2017 calendar updates to the blog this week; we’ll continue adding to the calendar as we firm up speaking and travel details:
- Colorado City/County Managers Association Conference, January 25, 2017 – January 28, 2017
- Missouri Municipal Managers Association Winter Workshop, January 25, 2017 – January 26, 2017
- Strategic Government Resources Conference, January 26, 2017 – January 27, 2017
- Ohio City Managers Association Winter Conference, February 22, 2017 – February 24, 2017
December 23 GovLove Recording & Periscope Event
Save the date and log on to Periscope at noon PST on December 23 and watch Ben, Kent, and I tape the final episode of GovLove for 2016 . We’ll reflect on 2016, look ahead to 2017, and tell really funny jokes.