Golf clap to new ELGL project assistant Harrison Wicks. Harrison will serve as a point person for the SW chapter. His duties including managing the SW Twitter feed, developing original content, and strengthening our partnerships with other organizations.
Who Am I? Why Am I Here?
Attention ELGL members, supporters, and all other local government professionals! My name is Harrison Wicks and I recently began a new role as an ELGL Public Affairs Assistant. I have been an ELGL member since the beginning of the year. During this time I have been refreshed by the collegial atmosphere and free following exchange of ideas.
My background? This year I completed an MPA at the wonderful University of North Texas (UNT). The distinguished graduate program offered me more in education and relationship-building than I could have ever imagined. In fact, I firmly believe that it was the professors and former chair of the program, Dr. Bob Bland, that convinced me of the true merits and personal fulfillment that comes with a public service career in local government.
Growing up in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex offered a unique perspective on local government management. The metroplex is home to more than 100 cities. Some of the cities are tightly packed, sandwiched in-between others, that when looking at a map the North Texas region looks more like a puzzle with complicated pieces and shapes.
My parents (Fran Witte, City of Irving, TX Environmental Programs Coordinator and James Wicks) both worked in local government. This brought a childhood full of attending parades, special events, and council meetings. Jealous, yet? These experiences helped me understand that serving others is essential to my own personal fulfillment. I chose the public sector because I value making a difference. Public service in local government allows me to contribute to making people’s lives easier, more manageable, and hopefully better by increasing their quality of life.
In working with ELGL, I hope to deepen my knowledge about innovations happening in cities throughout the county. I also cherish the opportunity to work with other professionals who are steering local government in a positive directon. I am excited to become an active participant in the constructive change happening in local government and through ELGL.
Thus far, my experience with ELGL has highlighted that there is a growing group of local government professionals and enthusiasts. I am committed to developing programs that will encourage collaboration between innovators in all 50 states.
I believe the current state of local government management is immensely positive. Academic institutions and MPA graduate programs educate and encourage potential leaders to learn as much as possible about the profession. Emerging local government professionals take that philosophy with them into the workforce and apply it to all challenges of the day. If there is a problem, we find a solution. If there is a challenge, we overcome it. We in the public sector cannot simply hang up our jacket and call it a day. Our job is serving others and it is a 24/7 commitment, but it is the one of the most rewarding commitments we could ever agree to.