The next installment of the ELGL innovation webinar series is coming up! So shake of the food coma you plan to enter immediately after Thanksgiving dinner and join us on December 3rd for a webinar on the HUD resource locator and the innovative way the project came about.
How are they innovative?
Let’s face it, if local governments are rarely thought of as innovative then the federal government never is, but one ELGL member, Connor McDonnell, is going to share a project that he and team of people at the Department of Housing and Urban Development have been working on to better connect people to resources and programs. Currently in the development phase but set to release soon, the “HUD Resource Locator” will be a phone application and widget on the HUD.gov website that will help those in need of affordable housing and homeless services better connect to buildings and organizations that can help them.
What’s really interesting about this project, more than the app itself is the process that created the app. it came from the use of something called “innovation time” which HUD got from Google. The ability to give staff opportunities and empower them to work collectively to solve problems and innovate has implications for all levels of government.
Here’s a quote from the Office of Personal Management Director Katherine Archuleta on the project and the GovConnect program that it resulted from,”Earlier this year, OPM launched GovConnect, a mobile, innovative model where employees can spend a few hours each week working in teams across the country on projects that don’t necessarily fall within their current jobs. For example, a team at HUD, cross-country based, created an App to help people find affordable housing. That’s being piloted in Portland, Oregon and Minneapolis, Minn.”
Meet the Speakers
Connor McDonnell is a Management Analyst at the Department of Housing and Urban Development, a position he’s held for almost 3 years. He works out of the Portland, Oregon office and holds an MPA from Portland State University. Prior to working at HUD Mr. McDonnell interned for Portland City Commissioner Nick Fish, worked for Transition Housing in Portland, and worked for the Portland Housing Bureau.
Connect with Mr. McDonnell: LinkedIn.
James Baltazar is also a Management Analyst for the Department of Housing and Urban Development but he works for the Minneapolis, Minnesota office. Mr. Baltazar has been at HUD in his current position for about 6 months but worked for two years as a presidential management fellow at HUD before that. He has also worked for the State Department in Ireland and for several elected officials. Mr. Baltazar has a masters in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Minnesota.
Connect with Mr. Baltazar: LinkedIn.