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2020 #ELGLTraeger Winners: #71-#80

Posted on December 9, 2020


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It’s the most wonderful time of the year! We’re counting down the top 100 influencers in local government. Today, met ten amazing local leaders who are making a difference in their communities. View the full list on the #ELGLTraeger page, and share your congrats using the hashtag #ELGLTraeger on social media!


Matt Vonderhayden#71 – Matt von der Hayden

Township Administrator, Township of Stafford

LinkedIn 

Three words to describe the nominee: 

Leader / Educator / Communicator

Why does the nominee deserve a 2020 Traeger Award? 

Matthew von der Hayden is the Township Administrator / Director of the Water & Sewer Utility Department for Stafford Township and part-time adjunct faculty member for Villanova University’s MPA Program. Matt has an MPA from Villanova, an MBA from Rutgers University and Bachelors in Biological Sciences from Rowan University. His work is related to finance, project management, grants (obtained over $12 million in grants), and administration, working with federal, state and local organizations, along with the public, to complete projects for Stafford Township, Egg Harbor Township, Ocean City and the Atlantic County Utilities Authority. Matt is an active member in the International City/County Management Association (ICMA), the Emerging Local Government Leaders, the New Jersey Municipal Management Association (NJMMA) and the Senior Policy Advisor for the New Jersey Coastal Coalition. Matt was awarded the February 2017 Sustainability Hero award from Sustainable Jersey and the 2018 NJMMA New Professional award for his work in the public sector. His volunteer work includes helping coach his son’s team for the South Jersey Field of Dreams for children with special needs, serving on the Sustainable Jersey Atlantic Cape May Steering HUB and the ICMA’s Awards Panel, coordination of multiple dune plantings, beach cleanups and lecture series in Ocean City, and speaking at Villanova to promote public administration.  Matt has shown his goal in his career is to serve the public and he is doing just that. 


sophie mcginley#72 – Sophie McGinley

Assistant Planner, City of Eugene

LinkedIn | Twitter

Three words to describe the nominee: 

Creative, dedicated, innovative

Why does the nominee deserve a 2020 Traeger Award? 

Sophie is a dedicated and hardworking employee who also extends her public service by serving on the planning commission. This shows her genuine interest in making the communities she works for and live in better and thriving. She is also a clear communicator on complex issues and I appreciate that about her work style and approach.

Anything else to add? 

Her ELGL Instagram takeover for the City of Eugene and her explanation of Oregon’s single family zoning law was masterclass.


Carmen Lazo#73 – Carmen Lazo

Children’s Services Coordinator, City of Pflugerville

LinkedIn

Three words to describe the nominee: 

Diligent, positive, sociable

Why does the nominee deserve a 2020 Traeger Award? 

Carmen is one of the most dedicated public employees that I know. She has served our community for 15 years working in children’s services at the library. Carmen works tirelessly to ensure that the needs and interests of the children and families in our city are met. While another staff member (usually me) may try to convince her that she has done as much as could reasonably be accomplished on a project, Carmen, in classic Chris Traeger fashion, inevitably insists that she can go a step further. She won’t settle for “great” when she thinks that “outstanding” is within reach.  A running joke in our office is that people tell Carmen EVERYTHING. She meets a person and an hour later she knows their entire life story. This is due to Carmen taking a real interest in the people she meets on a daily basis, whether it’s a new library guest, a fellow city employee, or community member met at an outreach event. The next time she sees them, Carmen will remember their face, their name, the name of their third cousin twice removed, and she’ll follow up on what they spoke about last.  Although I do technically now serve as Carmen’s supervisor, I cannot express how much her mentorship meant to me during my early years working in Youth Services. She was my example on everything from leading a toddler storytime to networking with other librarians at regional events. I am fortunate to have her to rely on for continued guidance as we strive to provide excellent service to our community. Carmen doesn’t limit her energy and job knowledge to the library. She is currently part of the city’s ADA Task Committee which is working to ensure that all city facilities and services are fully ADA compliant. She also serves on our city’s Wellness Committee which plans campaigns, presentations, and contests to support employees’ mental and physical health. Carmen regularly coordinates with staff from other city departments to both bring their expertise to the library for various projects and events, and to offer the library’s support to other departments’ projects.  Carmen is also shares knowledge with others in our profession. When the pandemic shut down most libraries’ events last spring, Carmen planned and hosted a virtual Youth Share meeting with over 40 other Central Texas librarians to discuss our virtual plans for the Summer Reading Program and share our struggles, solutions, and ideas. That meeting caught the interest of other Texas librarians and led to similar virtual meetings set up by the Central Texas Library Association. Carmen has also presented at the Texas Library Association annual conference on topics including bilingual storytime, services for homeschoolers, and STEM programs.  Carmen is an excellent candidate for the #ELGLTraeger Award and I thank you for your consideration.

Anything else to add? 

Newspaper article


Al Vanderberg#74 – Al Vanderberg

County Administrator, Ottawa County, MI

LinkedIn

Three words to describe the nominee: 

Forward-thinking, Mentor, Dedicated

Why does the nominee deserve a 2020 Traeger Award? 

Al is a top influencer. Not only does he work tirelessly for what’s best for Ottawa County but places a high premium on training staff and helping emerging leaders fulfill their utmost potential. He also serves as a role model and a leader for his colleagues across the country. He’s not afraid to try innovative things while consistently keeping top of mind the goal of ensuring the county is serving its citizens. 

Anything else to add? 

Al is a busy guy with a lot of responsibility and yet he always has time for others and to share his experiences. He really is someone who sees the importance of building a capacity of an organization by building up its individuals. He truly values bringing up his staff and bringing in other partners in a very collaborative, yet focused way. 


Jessica Wildes#75 – Jessica Wildes

Communications and Economic Development Director, City of West Bend

LinkedIn | Twitter

Three words to describe the nominee: 

Talented, Hard-working, Smart

Why does the nominee deserve a 2020 Traeger Award? 

Jess has been a tremendous asset to our City of West Bend organization. She joined our team for a newly created Communications Director position and was quickly promoted to Economic Development/Communications Director. She served in a critical role during the COVID-19 pandemic assisting with internal and external communications. Jess has also been a critical member to our team for recruiting and retaining businesses in West Bend. Jess has grown our Facebook followers @CityofWestBend to over 16,500 followers.

Anything else to add? 

Jess has recently enrolled in the UW-Oshkosh Master of Public Administration graduate program. She has already accomplished a lot in her career and has a very bright future. 


Anne Zadeh#76 – Ann Zadeh

Councilmember, District 9, City of Fort Worth

LinkedIn | Twitter

Three words to describe the nominee: 

Advocate. Engaged. Kind.

Why does the nominee deserve a 2020 Traeger Award? 

Ann Zadeh is a community advocate extraordinaire. She has been continuously involved in numerous efforts from public transit, urban planning, event coordination, and community engagement. Ann’s advocacy doesn’t stop at her service as a City Councilwoman; rather, Ann’s work has deep roots as a planning consultant, serving on the Zoning Commission, and being a tireless advocate for ensuring Fort Worth is the best place to live, work, and play. Ann asks great questions, serves as an essential connector for District 9 residents, and empowers City staff to do what they do best.

Anything else to add? 

Ann is an incredible leader and Fort Worth is so lucky to have her! Thank you, Ann, for your tenacious service to your community.


Laura Karpaviciute#77 – Laura Karpaviciute

Assistant to the City Manager, City of Tamarac, FL

LinkedIn

Three words to describe the nominee: 

Thoughtful, Heartfelt, Ambitious 

Why does the nominee deserve a 2020 Traeger Award? 

Laura is the Assistant to the City Manager at the City of Tamarac, FL.  She has done an incredible job driving forward the City’s strategic plan throughout her 8 years of service. Her passion and enthusiasm for the success and betterment of her community is contagious!   Laura also jumps at the chance to give back whether it is sharing her journey with others in local government or serving as a mentor in our recent ELGL Strategy Cohort.  She is generous and kind and that is reflected in all she does.  


Ingrid Kindbom#78 – Ingrid Kindbom

Assistant Structural Innovation Manager, City of Fort Lauderdale, FL

LinkedIn

Three words to describe the nominee: 

Innovative, Genuine, Giving

Why does the nominee deserve a 2020 Traeger Award? 

Ingrid has been with City of Fort Lauderdale for 7 years, promoting innovation in strategic planning, data, and process improvement. She is also an expert in the LEAN methodology, integrating that approach in process improvement for the City’s operations. In all of her work, Ingrid brings a positive energy and genuine excitement for strategy and performance management. Ingrid also seizes any opportunity she can to give back, being one of the most active members of the ClearPoint community!  She has served in an advisory role to our Community and recently volunteered as a mentor for the ELGL Strategy Cohort.  

Anything else to add? 

I particularly love Ingrid’s quote on her LinkedIn profile.  It is so reflective of who she is as a person!  “I like change. Change breaks old habits and paves the way for new opportunities.”


Crystal LaTier#79 – Crystal LaTier

Economic Development Executive Director, El Paso County

LinkedIn

Three words to describe the nominee: 

compassionate, achiever,  mentor

Why does the nominee deserve a 2020 Traeger Award? 

Crystal is a model of how government leaders can create new collaboration opportunities to serve the community while also raising the bar on best practices. She’s not afraid to innovate yet she is also also ready to help whenever needed.

Anything else to add? 

Crystal is the innovator that led to an approximately $14 million business relief program in our community that has probably saved hundreds of small businesses from shutting down while also providing them with longevity resources. No one else in the community has tried harder or done more to save mom and pop businesses during the pandemic. She is truly compassionate to the struggles of local businesses and has done absolutely everything in her power to help them survive. 


Lisa Tattersall#80 – Lisa Tattersall

WCCLS Manager, Washington County Cooperative Library Services (WCCLS)

Twitter

Three words to describe the nominee: 

strategic, thoughtful, resilient

Why does the nominee deserve a 2020 Traeger Award? 

I’m sure you’re getting lots of nominations for people who figured out a way to pivot during Pandemic: and this is another one! Lisa Tattersall is deserving of a Trager Award for overcoming fear, showing resilience, and leading (wrangling) a bunch of library directors to come together even more during this crucial time. We had a levy on a ballot (passed!), services to figure out, continual crises with inclement weather, and changing circumstances due to Covid – and through it all Lisa kept calm on the outside and carried us through by uniting us, making us have crucial and often difficult conversations, and bridging communication gaps that without her would have widened causing even bigger gaps in services to our community. She also had fun prompts in the bazillion Zoom calls we all had to endure and found rays of positivity and light through the storm. I’m forever grateful for learning from her, having her as a leader, and also her friendship. 

Anything else to add? 

Washington County Cooperative Library Services (WCCLS) is a partnership of Washington County, nine cities, and three non-profit associations to deliver excellent countywide library services. This means that Washington County residents can use any of the 16 public library locations in the county, all using the same library card.


We’ll release ten new names each day from December 7 – 18, 2020!

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