In 2020, ELGL published 861 articles on ELGL.org. Here are the top 20 (based on Google Analytics page views).
#1: COVID-19 Local Government Resources
Not surprisingly, the top spot is the resource page that ELGL began when the country shut down in March to address the pandemic. This page includes the information and crowd sourced resources from our members in response to COVID-19:
#2, #3, #4: Making COVID… Fun?
The next three most popular articles showcase the ways that local government leaders tried to find the joy or brighter moments in 2020, including Zoom Pictionary instructions, Zoom backgrounds, and a pen pal program that we coordinate for our members’ children to make connections while socially distanced.
#5: COVID Staffing Memo Example
One of the most difficult challenges ELGL members faced in 2020 was the decision to furlough or layoff employees. This sample workforce impacts letter was an example of how an ELGL member shared their communications so others could learn from their experience with a reduction in force.
#6: Libraries Are Essential
After this op-ed was published in Library Journal, ELGL member Stephanie Chase wrote a thoughtful response about the role that public libraries play in our communities. Her thoughtful response was the sixth most popular article of the year:
#7: Share the Diversity Dashboard
ELGL’s work on the Diversity Dashboard continued in 2020 under the leadership of Brian Murphy and Emily Edmonds. They made the strategic decision to reach out at the state level to ELGL members to champion the Dashboard and engage our members to get more survey responses. This effort included information and marketing materials that could easily be shared via state-level newsletters, associations, and groups.
#8: Revamping Public Meetings
The top Morning Buzz post was by Warren Kagarise about the importance of changing the ways local government conducts public hearings. A key quote from his Buzz: “If we truly want to include all voices in decision-making, we need to rethink the role of public meetings in civic life.”
#9: ELGL Now Hiring
In 2020, ELGL hired a new Program Director. (And we were lucky enough to find two amazing new staff members…). Our job advertisement was one of the most popular posts of the year and we were lucky to have 80 applicants for the position.
A perennial favorite, the posts announcing #ELGLTraeger winners were joyful and popular. We released 10 new names every day for two weeks in December. In addition to ELGL.org recognition, winners also receive a custom 2020 #ELGLTraeger magnet for their fridge or office.
#11: #ELGL20 Attendance Memo
It was such a simpler time – posted in January, this popular post was the justification memo for members to use to attend #ELGL20 when it was scheduled for May in Portland, Oregon. The conference was subsequently moved to October, and then moved online as a virtual event.
#12: Remembering Haley
Haley Fish was a longtime ELGL member, one of the first people to join the organization when it started in Oregon. Her work as a Finance Director in many Oregon cities was featured on a GovLove podcast with her friend Casey Camors. The post about her memorial scholarship received a lot of attention and we’re hopeful that this attention also helped her scholarship fund set up by the Oregon Government Finance Officers Association (OGFOA).
#13: Open Ears, Open Hearts, Open Shoulders
Former ELGL Board of Directors member Christian Williams penned this personal essay in response to the George Floyd murder in Minneapolis, MN. He begins the post by writing:
As an American, a black American, and a person who is often viewed as a second class citizen both personally and in professional environments, this past week has been tough. It was hard to watch the events that unfolded in Minnesota and across the country. It was hard to watch the myriad of social media posts and opinions concerning the event.
Open Ears, Open Hearts, Open Shoulders – ELGL’s Response to this Time of Upheaval
#14: PAFR Fellowship
ELGL began the popular PAFR (Popular Annual Financial Report) Fellowship program in 2020, matching 33 graduate students with 40 local governments to complete PAFR reports and learn about local government communications and financial reporting. The PAFR Fellowship page was popular in 2020.
#15: Lessons Learned From My Daughter
Dr. Sarah Martin, VP of Health Solutions at mySidewalk wrote the second-most popular Morning Buzz of the year. In it, she shares the top five lessons she has learned from her daughter.
#16: Addressing Implicit Bias
Jenine Jenkins with CPS-HR consulting returned to ELGL for a webinar about tools to address implicit bias in local government. This post includes her presentation and also the video of her presentation to ELGL.
#17: The Mandalorian & Local Gov Leadership
One thing we know to be true: if you combine local government leadership lessons with “Star Wars” concepts, it will be a must-read. Lynn Kelly-Lehner from RSG, Inc. wrote this popular Morning Buzz in late 2020 and it’s on the Top 20 list.
#18: COVID Communications
This post by Kimbra McCarthy, City Manager, and Chris Hsiung, (now Police Chief, then Deputy Police Chief/Strategic Communications Team Lead), City of Mountain View, California was about communications during COVID-19.
#19: Self Care During COVID
Katie Nelson joins her Mountain View, CA colleague on the Top 20 list with this post advising self care during the challenging and sometimes traumatic work in local government.
#20: CARES Act Overview
The last article in the Top 20 was penned anonymously (which we are always happy to share given that everyone’s ability to write publicly is different) at the end of March and was the first glimpse at “what is this CARES Act and what does it mean for local government?”