Nathan Mehmed, West Michigan Regional Planning Commission

Posted on August 21, 2014

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Welcome to the new and (somewhat) improved version of our member introductions. If you are puzzled by the column name, take a minute to watch this scene from Austin Powers.


Now that you are a little less puzzled, it’s time to learn about one of our newest members.

Nathan-MehmedNathan Mehmed is an alumnus of Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Michigan where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Geography with an emphasis in City and Regional Planning and Geographic Information Systems. He also completed a minor in Environmental Studies.

Nathan is dedicated to public service and has a passion for local and regional government, especially in urban planning, economic development, and GIS implementation.

Currently, Nathan is a graduate student at Grand Valley State University pursuing a Master of Public Administration with an emphasis in public management. He has been working in various forms of government since May 2011.

Nathan’s current goals include completing graduate study and maintaining employment as a planning professional, GIS professional, public manager, or government analyst.

14 Questions with Nathan


(Complete the sentence) Today is…… a day of days.

Your hometown? What is it best known for?

Hartland, Michigan. It is best known for a large orchard “tourist trap” business.

Describe the state of local government in your area.

The City of Grand Rapids survived the recession and is now on an upswing. City leadership is open to new ideas and improving quality of life. Recently, voters approved an increased parks millage and the extension of a temporary city income tax which will help to fix local roads. The surrounding suburbs are in decent shape as well considering reduced revenue sharing from the State of Michigan.


What topics or practitioners would you like to see ELGL profile?

Small town municipal management and managers.

(Complete these phrases) Best thing about the….giphy

80’s was……. movies (Back to the Future, Indiana Jones, etc.).

90’s was…… the Detroit Red Wings winning the Stanley Cup twice.

00’s was….. the Detroit Red Wings winning the Stanley Cup two additional times.

Last year was….. the ICMA 99th Annual Conference in Boston.

Today is…. I registered for the ELGL ICMA Beer Tasting Mixer!

If you could interview any three people (dead or alive), who would it be?

  • Thomas Jefferson
  • John Adams
  • Theodore Roosevelt

(Complete this sentence) I feel old when I……..walk around campus.

What are the best things about the internet? The internet knows all.

Parent(s) can be influential in career choices of their kids. What was the career path of your parent(s)?

Mom: College to elementary school teacher.

Dad: College to various sales and engineering positions with automotive suppliers.

(Complete the sentence) ELGL is…… new to me!11

Where do you hear about ELGL? Through an ICMA Local Government Management Fellow recommending that I register for the ELGL & ICMA Beer Tasting Mixer.

Give us two ideas for attracting and retaining talented individuals to the public sector.

  • Reduce the negative stigma associated with government and government employees (this is obviously easier said than done). The public sector need not be glorified but it could use a fresh PR campaign.
  • Create a visible path to success. Show young people where a public sector career can lead them!

What’s one question that we should ask the next person who completes this profile? Why LOCAL government?

(Complete the sentence) Tomorrow is……. a day of days.

Supplemental Reading


Interview with Nathan Mehmed

Grand Valley State University students want sidewalks

Grand Valley Lanthorn :: Too Unsafe To Walk Here

Cook Leadership Academy Fellows | – Hauenstein Center

Winter 2014 – Michigan Local Government Management

GVSU welcomes first student ICMA chapter in state

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