Melissa Mark-Viverito Speaks Up One of the biggest questions in this year’s election is ‘who has a voice in the system?’ Immigrants, minority groups, and voters across the political spectrum feel that their interests aren’t being heard by those in power. This month we’re highlighting a New York City Council member who has made it her priority to be a voice for the voiceless, advocating for the disenfranchised and creating a network of resources to help them succeed. Melissa Mark-Viverito is Speaker of the New York City Council, a former DMO Board Member, and our DMO of the Month this November.Born and raised in San Juan, Mark-Viverito is a national advocate for Puerto Ricans both in New York City and on the island. She is committed to pulling Puerto Rico out of its current debt crisis, supporting the plan to allow its government to declare bankruptcy. It often escapes notice that the island’s 3.5 million residents share American citizenship. Her work to call attention to this looming financial crisis is not a case of global altruism, but of serving her fellow Americans.On the mainland, Mark-Viverito backs programs like the Unaccompanied Minors Initiative and Terra Firma, which provide undocumented children with...
Mike Kasperzak Plans Smart Growth As the Republican Party steps away from traditional conservatism, we see more Republicans taking a look at their other options. Prudence, foresight, and an eye for economic growth are today characteristics more emblematic of the Democratic Party. Our DMO of the Month made the switch to become a Democratic after seeing then Senator Obama speak at the DMO National Breakfast. Meet Mike Kasperzak, Councilman and past Mayor of Mountain View, CA and our DMO of the Month this October.Mountain View might ring a bell as the main headquarters of Google. The tech behemoth moved into town in 1999, and now employs 10% of the city’s residents. Other familiar Silicon Valley icons also have a presence in Mountain View, including Microsoft, Intuit, and LinkedIn. Hosting these companies gives Mountain View a few atypical challenges. For instance, Kasperzak notes that Google does not have to pay local taxes on their online ad sales like a traditional business would. High turnover in the tech field also means that employees are less likely to form lasting relationships with the community. Mike Kasperzak has spent his time in office deftly striking a balance between the technology industry and the rest...
Ted Ellis is Transforming his Town Stereotypes about rural vs urban communities have resurfaced as people try to make sense of the heated Presidential election. But the reality of small town America is more complex than an easy red state / blue state dichotomy. This month we highlight a mayor from the heart of Indiana who is breaking new ground in defining modern small town America. Meet Ted Ellis, Mayor of Bluffton, past National League of Cities President, and our DMO of the Month this September.Bluffton, a town of 10,000, was named Indiana’s first “Gigabit City” thanks to Mayor Ellis. The town has introduced broadband speeds of over 100 times faster than average, accomplished through a public-private partnership with a local telecom company. Ellis categorized fast internet as an essential utility, and noted that new business developments need high-speed broadband to succeed. The move is also seen as preparation for a future where both businesses and residents rely more heavily on streaming internet services. Bluffton was also recently named the best city in Indiana to start a business. With the advent of incredible broadband speeds, that title may stay with the town for years to come.The Bluffton Food Innovation Center...
Tim Kaine's Story is the Story of DMO "If I'm good at anything in politics, it's because I started at the local level" – Tim Kaine speaking at the 2016 Democratic National ConventionBefore Senator Kaine entered the DNC stage as an avuncular VP pick with a (believe me) great Donald Trump impression, he was a municipal official. Tim Kaine’s trajectory to the White House started with his service on the Richmond City Council. This month we’re doing a slightly different profile of a local official who went national. Meet Tim Kaine, who served both as a council member and as Mayor of Richmond, VA, and our DMO Alumni of the Month this August. Tim Kaine's Richmond faced many of the same issues playing out at the national level today. The notable difference is that Kaine was able to implement solutions locally that now seem impossible at the federal level. As a council member, Tim Kaine advocated for Project Exile to fight gun violence. The program prosecuted firearm possession charges in federal court rather than state. Convictions carried a mandatory minimum sentence of five years, with ten years required for offenders who falsified information to obtain a firearm or made a...
Michelle Wu Sets the Bar Cities are the government's front line of citizen engagement. When elected officials show what local government is capable of accomplishing, voters grow accustomed to that quality of service. Our DMO of the Month studied under Elizabeth Warren at Harvard Law, going on to serve as her Constituency Director when Warren ran for Senate. Having spent that formative period reaching out to underserved communities on the campaign trail, it is no surprise that her advocacy continues on the city council. This July we profile a DMO who sets the bar for responsive government. Meet Michelle Wu, Boston City Council President and DMO of the Month for July. Immigration remains a subject of intense rhetoric, both in Washington and on the campaign trail, and cities across the US have the power to make an immediate impact on the issue. Council President Wu passed a resolution stating that unaccompanied children of immigrants will not have their immigration status questioned as a condition for receiving an education in Boston public schools. The resolution also confirms that children of undocumented immigrants have the right to be represented by an attorney during litigation, sending a strong message to the Federal government...
Kenyatta Johnson Challenges the Status Quo We usually think that political careers have a trajectory towards wider office. A municipal official will move on to work in state government or as a congressperson. But officials representing larger populations can be drawn to the allure of municipal government; serving the people directly and having more agency in moving your agenda forward. Kenyatta Johnson is one such DMO, having left the Pennsylvania House of Representatives to serve on the Philadelphia City Council. He has wasted no time in responding to the issues that persist in his district, and many like it across the nation. The 2nd District will be hosting Democrats from across the nation as we gather in its hotels and halls for the Democratic National Convention. June’s DMO of the Month is working to make sure that when July ends, the people of Philadelphia will continue to benefit from Democratic ideals. With the annual Memorial Day shootings fresh in the news, articles covering gun violence can seem more perfunctory than outraged. Councilman Johnson fights to replace the banality of daily shooting reports with a culture of pushback against this status quo. Johnson himself founded Peace Not Guns after the murder...
Ken Miyagishima is Winning Victories in Las Cruces No matter your success as a public official, there will always be someone who can’t wait to kick you out of office. In a healthy democracy, dissenting voices present alternative views and spur the incumbent to stay engaged in their community. But the Citizens United decision has propagated an environment where a DMO beloved by one’s city can be threatened by the wealth of outside forces. This was the case with our DMO of the Month, Las Cruces, New Mexico Mayor Ken Miyagishima. This May we take a look at a DMO doing right by his town, and how his success put him in the crosshairs of a super PAC.Las Cruces (population 101,324) is a city in need of strong municipal leadership. The city is officially in a recession, with 23% of residents living in poverty. Workers are facing the same transitional economy being felt across the nation, with the local mining industry on a downturn but hospitality and healthcare on the rise. Mayor Miyagishima is addressing the immediate financial crisis felt by residents on a number of fronts. The minimum wage has risen to $8.40 an hour, with the city phasing...
LaWana Mayfield Gives Visibility to the Overlooked On February 22nd, 2016 the Charlotte City Council passed an anti-discrimination bill. The bill updated existing legislation to ban discrimination on the basis of familial status, sexual orientation, gender expression, and gender identity. That ordinance, and indeed all local anti-discrimination legislation across the state was struck down by the Republican held General Assembly and Governor Pat McCrory in a special session last week. Much of the political focus was on a provision of Charlotte's ordinance that allowed trans* individuals to use the restrooms, locker rooms, and changing facilities that aligned with their gender identity. This April, we take a closer look at the situation in North Carolina, and the efforts of Charlotte City Council Member and DMO of the Month LaWana Mayfield. In a city known for DMO leaders like Council Members Patsy Kinsey and James Mitchell, we highlight LaWana Mayfield's enduring commitment to representation in the face of Republican opposition. The LGBT community has made significant gains in recent years with the end of Don't Ask, Don't Tell, the Obergefell ruling legalizing same-sex marriage, and growing public acceptance of non-straight relationships. However this community is not a monolith, and the T part...
De’Keither Stamps is a hometown hero While we think of all our Democratic Municipal Officials who serve in the communities in which they were raised as "hometown heroes" few also wear the proud titles of “community farmer” and “war veteran”. This month we celebrate the journey of a DMO who joined the Marines, served during the Iraq War, and was even assigned to guard President Clinton. Today you might find him proposing legislation to the city council, or tending to his family farm. Meet De'Keither Stamps, City Councilman from Jackson, Mississippi and our DMO of the Month this March. Councilman Stamps has led on local issues, often innovating to find new paths to reach traditional goals. For instance, he partnered with the Jackson Parent Teacher Association to launch the “Books in Barbershops” program, which creates small libraries in nearly a dozen barbershops throughout the city. This program encourages children to read while waiting at the barber for their haircuts. The city government has also joined forces with the PTA to provide several of the barbers with additional training to help the kids pass grade school literacy tests. The Jackson PTA and Councilman Stamps want to extend the early reading program...
Greg Fischer Brings Louisville Together No DMO can go it alone. Whether you are partnering with other government officials, community groups, or constituents, your ideas need support to become reality. Louisville, KY Mayor Greg Fischer has made jobs, education, and compassion the three pillars of his administration. But the real hallmark of his term has been bringing people into the fold to realize these goals. Meet Greg Fischer, our DMO of the Month this February.Louisville Forward is the heart of Mayor Fischer's economic strategy, and showcases his talent at welcoming partners to the table. The program is designed to integrate government, real estate management, workers, and employers into a streamlined effort focusing on job growth and livability. For instance, the initiative connects fledgling businesses with micro-loan opportunities, granting new entrepreneurs access to startup capital. Another component of Louisville Forward is the Nia Center (Nia means ‘purpose’ in Swahili), which offers small business counseling, financial assistance, GED classes, and job placement facilitators. These efforts have led to the creation 3,500 jobs since Louisville Forward's inception.Regional compacts between cities have been growing in popularity. Working with partners at the local level means not having to wait for innovation to come from state...
Lauren Kuby Fights for Local Control Cities have made impressive strides on issues like paid leave, energy efficiency, and raising the minimum wage. But when local Democrats stand out for their success, there are some groups that will try to restore the status quo. This rogues gallery includes ALEC and Republican state legislatures, who are pulling out all the stops to halt progress. Tempe, Arizona Council Member Lauren Kuby stands up against these entities in her effort to maintain local control. Our first DMO of the Month for 2016 reminds us that it is not always enough to pass great legislation; you may also have to fight to keep that work in place when others would undo it. Early last year Tempe was considering a ban on plastic bags. Like many cities currently holding the same debate, they were weighing the benefits of reducing waste with the potential cost to businesses and consumers. Intimidated by the prospect of cities across the state passing similar legislation, Arizona's government acted first. Governor Doug Ducey signed a bill prohibiting cities from enacting plastic bag bans, preempting municipalities' ability to decide the issue according to what local voters wanted. Enter Lauren Kuby, who is...
DMO of the Year 2015
Meet Matt Appelbaum, DMO of the Year 2015 DMO gathered in Music City this November to celebrate our successes and name a DMO of the Year. Securing the award was Matt Appelbaum, Mayor of Boulder, Colorado. Below is what was written about Mayor Appelbaum back when he was named DMO of the Month for October. October's DMO of the Month Makes a Global Difference on Climate Change Local efforts have the potential to gain worldwide recognition. Such was the case when Boulder Mayor Matt Appelbaum was invited to join mayors from around the world at the Vatican to discuss climate change with Pope Francis. The effects of climate change are clearly felt in Boulder, which has experienced historic flooding and is racing to adapt. October DMO of the Month Matt Appelbaum knows that his city depends on an appropriate response to new climate patterns.Municipal officials everywhere have to deal with imminent threats when climate change triggers more extreme weather in their cities. Mayor Appelbaum had to respond when increased precipitation (17 inches in eight days in 2013) brought on by climate change led to extensive flooding damage. Boulder has since demarcated areas susceptible to those floods, and created new bike...
November's DMO of the Month Makes Life Easier Democratic municipal officials deal in solutions to day-to-day problems. Constituents cast their votes in the hopes that their candidate will make changes that leave them with fewer things to worry about. This November we recognize a DMO who removes obstacles from the daily grind. Meet Margaret Chin, City Councilwoman from New York City.New York is famous for its heavy traffic. Your mind might jump to taxis, but it is trucks that are involved in a disproportionate number of the city’s traffic deaths. Though trucks account for just 3.6% of total vehicles they are responsible for a third of cycler fatalities. One possible cause was that New York’s toll system incentivized multi-axle trucks to avoid costs by rerouting through neighborhood streets. Margaret Chin pushed through a bill that requires the city to take a closer look at how the toll system impacts traffic safety. The effect of bridge tolls on truck routes are now subject to audits every five years by the Department of Transportation. Cities are complex organisms where policy decisions can have unexpected consequences. The most vigilant DMOs keep their eyes open for these interactions and implement change when a different...
October's DMO of the Month Makes a Global Difference on Climate Change Local efforts have the potential to gain worldwide recognition. Such was the case when Boulder Mayor Matt Appelbaum was invited to join mayors from around the world at the Vatican to discuss climate change with Pope Francis. The effects of climate change are clearly felt in Boulder, which has experienced historic flooding and is racing to adapt. October DMO of the Month Matt Appelbaum knows that his city depends on an appropriate response to new climate patterns.Municipal officials everywhere have to deal with imminent threats when climate change triggers more extreme weather in their cities. Mayor Appelbaum had to respond when increased precipitation (17 inches in eight days in 2013) brought on by climate change led to extensive flooding damage. Boulder has since demarcated areas susceptible to those floods, and created new bike lanes and underpasses that double as flood control channels. Bolstering the city’s infrastructure against this severe flooding is estimated to cost in the neighborhood of $400 million. However the total repair bill of $43 million in 2013 alone makes the cost prudent in the long run. Indeed, fifteen percent of homes in Boulder were damaged...
August marks the one year anniversary of the shooting of Michael Brown, and the subsequent civil unrest in Ferguson, Missouri. The demonstrations in Ferguson triggered a cascade of protests nationwide against similar incidents involving law enforcement, a DOJ investigation into the Ferguson police department, the White House commissioning the Task Force on 21st Century Policing, and the now famous “hands up, don’t shoot” rallying cry. St. Louis Alderman Antonio French directed national attention on social media through his coverage of the crisis. This was no new feat for our DMO of the Month for September, and his constant efforts to cast a spotlight on injustice and end violence in his community. For young people across the nation, the events of Ferguson unfurled over Twitter, Vine, and other social media platforms. Events that would have otherwise gone unreported were instead captured by citizens uploading photos and footage, French one among many. However his notability as an elected official lent particular authority to his posts online. Alderman French’s twitter updates stood as an official blow by blow for many following the civil unrest in the wake of Brown’s death. French himself was arrested for “unlawful assembly” while seeking refuge from tear gas...
Roy Buol Creates a Greener Dubuque Democratic Municipal Officials are known for two important qualities; a passion for innovation and the ability to provide common sense solutions. DMOs are adept at achieving progressive policy goals while still keeping things practical. Rather than see their vision as an unachievable ideal, the best municipal officials use their aspirations to introduce sustainable changes. As heads turn towards Iowa for the 2016 presidential election, let’s cast our gazes at a DMO who knows how to turn progressive values into economic boons. Meet Roy Buol, Mayor of Dubuque and DMO of the Month for August. Under Mayor Buol’s leadership, funding for arts and cultural projects grew from zero to over 2.3 million dollars. The city invested in undertakings like the America’s River Project on the Port of Dubuque. The $400 million educational, entertainment, and historic riverfront site consists of restaurants, hotels, casinos, a museum complex, and hosts a thriving roster of festivals. Installments like the Art on the River Project support local and national artists with a $1,500 stipend while contributing to Dubuque’s growing tourism sector. The city takes a commission on sales, allowing them to continue the cycle of showcasing artistic talent. By cultivating...
Karen Freeman-Wilson has a Passion for Gary Some cities need to be brought back from the brink. The rust belt has been hit hard by the decline of American manufacturing. Residents have fled, communities have given way to blight, and crime rates have risen in their stead. The DMOs who run for office in these cities are running to take on the work of rebuilding their communities. It's the love of their cities that compels individuals to take on such a Herculean task. This month we recognize the efforts of one such mayor, who is running for a second term moving mountains in the Midwest. Meet Karen Freeman-Wilson, Mayor of Gary and our DMO of the Month for July. A graduate of Harvard Law, Freeman-Wilson's loyalty and passion for her city brought her home to help realize Gary's true potential. Gary's prominence in the early 20th century came in part from its ideal location as a manufacturing and transportation center. Mayor Freeman-Wilson incorporates renewed attention to transit and infrastructure as part of her plans for revitalization. A $100 million PPP will redevelop Gary's airport over a 40 year period, with a $25 million influx jump-starting renovations over the first three...
Joe Moreno Demands Accountability Chicago made history this May, thanks to our DMO of the Month. Between 1972 and 1991, Chicago Police Commander Jon Burge and his subordinates used beatings, suffocation, and electrical shocks during interrogations with over 100 suspects, most of whom were African-American. This month, the Chicago City Council voted unanimously to create a historic reparations fund for the victims of this torture. Cities face a perceived lack of legitimacy when it comes to dealing with criminal officers. Community members often associate police misconduct with the local government, and feel as though no one in power represents their interests. Our DMO of the Month for June is Chicago Alderman Proco Joe Moreno, who championed the reparations ordinance and showed that his city takes police abuse seriously. The Atlantic provides further background for why victims of torture felt abandoned by the city, and why it took until 2015 for this kind of official response: Despite widespread accusations of torture, Richard M. Daley, then the Cook County State's Attorney and later Mayor of Chicago, did not investigate Burge and continued to use confessions elicited by torture to make convictions. …The statute of limitations for most of Burge’s alleged criminal acts...
Mark Stodola Seeks Justice Community problems rarely stem from a single factor. The difficulty in tackling issues like crime or homelessness is that they have multiple sources contributing to their prevalence. Addressing societal ills across multiple disciplines can be the best way to ensure their end. Our DMO of the Month takes a holistic approach to creating justice in his city. Meet Mark Stodola, Mayor of Little Rock and DMO of the Month for May. Cities nationwide face difficulty in effectively preventing homelessness. Veterans suffer a disproportionate rate of homelessness compared to other demographics. Service men and women often find too many barriers to access the resources that are already in place for them. Mark Stodola was an early adopter of the Mayors Challenge to End Veteran Homelessness. The program employs a “housing first” approach to ensure that participants secure a stable housing situation as quickly as possible. Mayor Stodola also opened the Jericho Way day resource center in 2013, which today assists the homeless in becoming financially self-sufficient, improving their overall well-being, and ultimately finding a new place to call home. Overall homeless rates have dropped by almost half since Stodola took office. The opportunity to bring an individual...
April’s DMO of the Month is the Mayor of “Gig City” President Obama announced his groundbreaking TechHire initiative this March at the National League of Cities Congressional City Conference. Twenty one cities joined the program to quickly fill half a million open jobs in the information technology sector. Among these participants is a tech hub already known as “Gig City” for its focus on IT innovation. Meet Andy Berke, Mayor of Chattanooga and DMO of the Month for April. The lifeblood of Chattanooga’s tech success is fast and pervasive broadband Internet access. Chattanooga’s municipal fiber network grew out of efforts in 2008 to install a smart electric grid equipped to handle serious power outages. Building the new Internet system during an existing infrastructure project, along with a $111 million grant from the Department of Energy, allowed the city to sidestep the typically untenable cost of installing municipal fiber services. The program currently serves upwards of 65,000 individuals and over 5,000 businesses, and a task force created by Burke is examining how to make the service inclusive to all residents. With the expansion of Chattanooga’s fiber service comes an increased interest in the city as a place to grow modern businesses....
Our DMO of the Month Fosters Stronger Communities DMOs are in a unique position to develop stronger communities. By engaging with the active groups in their city, they can see new opportunities for action and integration. March’s DMO of the Month cultivates community growth in her ward, as well as her State Chapter. Meet Elizabeth Glidden, City Council Vice President from Minneapolis’ 8th Ward. Elizabeth Glidden’s community building efforts extend beyond her service as a Minneapolis council member; she is also a Board Member of the Minnesota State Chapter of DMO. She recently organized a breakfast in St. Paul for the chapter. In attendance were thirty DMOs from across the state, and state Democratic leadership including Senate Majority Leader Bakk, House Minority Leader Thissen, and DFL Chairman Kevin Martin. The fantastic turnout in the -10 degree Minnesota winter shows the commitment of Glidden and our Minnesota Chapter, who will continue to build the party at the municipal level. Minneapolis is a pioneering city for green innovation, and Elizabeth Glidden is no exception. She penned the Green Building Benchmarking ordinance which requires large commercial buildings to provide statistics on their energy usage. The council member also helps represent the city in...
February's DMO of the Month Takes Charge Municipal Democrats sometimes have to contend with out-of-touch state government. Such legislative bodies use preemptive laws to bar progress, and accept the status quo by refusing to act on critical issues. In spite of these impediments, local Democrats get moving and forge the path forward. Our DMO of the Month for February takes action to represent his constituents, even when wider officials won’t. Meet Philip Levine, Mayor of Miami Beach, Florida. Mayor Levine has made a point of leading on equality. In a state whose officials fought against the Federal ruling that opened the way to gay marriage, Miami Beach makes sure that its employees and contracted workers enjoy full benefits regardless of orientation. They are also one of the first cities in the US to provide inclusive care for trans* employees through health insurance. Thanks to Mayor Levine, the city of Miami Beach filed an amicus brief for every Florida lawsuit challenging the state’s denial of equal marriage rights to LGBT citizens. These efforts have garnered the city a perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign’s Municipal Equality Index. Mayor Levine believes that government should provide for the health and wellness of...
Our DMO of the Month is the Next Generation of Government Municipal government serves as the farm team for the Democratic Party. When the next generation enters public office, they gain experience in community engagement and respect for serving their constituents. We begin the year with a young leader who exemplifies the next wave of Democratic office holders. Meet Jasmine Gore, Vice Mayor of Hopewell, Virginia, and DMO of the Month for January. First elected in 2012 at age 26, Gore is one of the youngest to hold office in Hopewell. A college internship in the state General Assembly sparked an enthusiasm for legislation, and inspired a well-prepared run for City Council. She met with then Mayor Christina Luman-Bailey for guidance, and got involved with the Architecture Review Board and Economic Development Authority to learn first-hand how local government operates and interacts with the public. Gore's campaign combated a lack of funds and perceptions of immaturity with a storm of local event appearances. She demonstrated that the best way to dispel public misconceptions is direct conversations with voters. In a time where many voters are ready for a change, Gore made her youth and fresh perspective an asset. She reinforced...
DMO of the Year 2014
Meet Nathan Triplett, DMO of the Year 2014 As we gathered in Austin, eleven strong contenders vied for the title of DMO of the Year. Securing the award was Nathan Triplett, Mayor of East Lansing, Michigan. Below is what was written about Mayor Triplett back when he was named DMO of the Month for March. President Barack Obama has declared 2014 a Year of Action. This initiative includes turning public focus to how towns and cities are leading the way on national issues. Municipalities are the laboratories where new policies are tested, and where local voices move forward despite national gridlock. In Michigan, cities are leading the way on technology, innovation, and equality. Recently, President Obama signed his historic Farm Bill in East Lansing, highlighting the crucial role Michigan communities play in feeding the nation. This month DMO joins the President in recognizing East Lansing. Meet Nathan Triplett, a mayor dedicated to the fight for equality, and our DMO of the Month for March. East Lansing has long lead the nation in anti-discrimination efforts. In 1972, the city was the first in America to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. In celebration of 40 years of...
Our DMO of the Month is Dedicated to Development At DMO, we get to see an unparalleled passion for public service in our members. Local Democrats are uniquely committed to making their cities better places to live. We also see a willingness to adopt new ideas, and fundamentally change how government is practiced. Our final DMO of the Month for 2014 sums up the year as a perfect example of this development mindset; both in transforming his city and in his approach to holding office. Meet Corey Rushton, Council Member and Mayor Pro Tem from West Valley City, Utah, and DMO of the Month for November. Open government has become a key issue in our cities as technology generates new concerns about privacy, and what information officeholders owe to their constituents. Councilman Rushton supports efforts to increase government transparency. Rushton and the Council have defined a seven point transparency standard that exceeds the legal minimum. He also maintains a blog that details the workings of city government. Police assessment findings, population growth projections, and the cost-benefit of refurbished snow trucks are displayed for anyone to view. Even basic questions of how West Valley City’s government functions are explained in detail....
October's DMO of the Month Gets to Work American politicians often spend too much time debating old problems instead of taking charge to find real solutions. The news and talk shows are stuffed with minutia and distractions, and it can be difficult to finally roll up your sleeves and get to work. This month we take a look at a municipal official who doesn’t sweat the small stuff. She isn’t afraid to step outside the sphere of endless discourse and start getting things done. Meet Nan Whaley, Mayor of Dayton Ohio, and DMO of the Month for October. This summer’s influx of child migrants from Central America continues to present problems for state and local governments. The legal and political situation, coupled with America’s history of welcoming immigrants while deporting undocumented workers, means that these children represent a uniquely difficult choice for lawmakers. Mayor Whaley accepted a federal government request to provide housing for these individuals, seeing the move as a form of humanitarian assistance. The matter to her is not only one of compassion, but affording anyone on American soil their due process under law. Some Ohio Republicans have criticized Whaley’s decision as support for "illegal immigrants", and claim...
Our DMO of the Month Hits the Ground Running In American politics, we typically imagine that large shifts in public discourse happen every 4-8 years. The common perception is that a new President heralds an overall change in our outlook and discussion. Working at the local level affords DMOs a more nuanced view. We see how the conversation constantly changes, as mayors and council members are elected across the nation at an interval of months rather than years. Santa Fe’s mayor heralds one of these new directions in public discourse. Elected this past March, he is no stranger to politics, having previously served as the President of the National Association of Counties and as the Chair of the New Mexico Democratic Party. Our DMO of the Month has immediately taken action and displayed values emblematic of a new American identity. Meet Javier Gonzales, Mayor of Santa Fe and DMO of the Month for September. Local officials taking the time to directly engage with their constituents is part of a growing trend towards transparency and accountability. Mayor Gonzales has made a point to communicate more over social media, and increase the hours his office is open to receive Santa Feans. He...
Our DMO of the Month Moves His City Forward As cities transition into the next century, they dredge up conflict along with progress. While new businesses and growing communities bring new life to a city, they introduce the problems of gentrification and cultural amelioration.How do we move our cities forward without leaving residents behind? Edwin Lee of San Francisco is one mayor attempting to resolve these issues and bring his city into a new era. Mayor Lee's efforts have steadied a San Francisco struggling with development and identity, and we are proud to name him DMO of the Month for August. San Francisco is a hub for both start-ups and established titans in the tech industry.Boasting the headquarters for Dropbox,Twitter, Yelp, and over 1,800 others, the city owes part of this success to Mayor Lee’s provision of tax incentives to companies like Twitter early in his first term. Lee is proving to be a tech savvy mayor himself, working with groups like Code for America to turn programming minds towards civic solutions, and starting an Entrepreneurship in Residence Program where young innovators partner with local government. He has come out in support of net neutrality, and developed open information portals...
Darius Brown Takes Fighting Poverty Personally The working poor are often overlooked in American society. With the infrastructure to allocate resources and the authority to pen legislation, government is our best hope of lifting more people up into a sustainable and comfortable life. This month, we applaud a DMO who takes true leadership in countering poverty and inequality. Meet Darius Brown, council member from Wilmington, Delaware and DMO of the Month for July. Wilmington’s overall poverty rates are roughly double the state average, with the hardest hit including African Americans, single mothers, and children. Darius Brown takes the responsibility of alleviating these conditions very personally. To bring attention to the difficulty of surviving on food stamps, he participated in the SNAP Challenge, living off only $21.50 in groceries during the week of his inauguration. He is also active with Half in Ten, a national campaign dedicated to reducing poverty by 50% in the next decade. The council member connects residents with sites run by the Delaware Earned Income Tax Credit Campaign. This volunteer program guides residents through their taxes, and helps them identify other financial services they qualify for. Brown also hosted an enrollment event to sign his constituents up...
Ellen Cohen is an Innovative Problem-Solver Being a dedicated public servant means confronting difficult problems. Infrastructure erodes, communities grow apart, and new constituent needs develop. Local government requires an honest approach, facing these dilemmas head on. Our DMO of the Month is not afraid to address public vulnerabilities with innovative solutions. Meet Ellen Cohen, Council Member from Houston and our DMO of the Month for June. Council Member Cohen has pioneered multiple projects in Houston to test new ideas. She participated in a pilot single stream recycling program, where community members place their recyclables, unsorted, into a single container for pickup. Increased enthusiasm with this method has seen tens of thousands of households adopt the new program, with more interested in joining. Cohen also developed and passed the creation of the Washington Avenue Parking Benefit District. The parking meters associated with this program provide a revenue stream that feeds back into the community, funding everything from better neighborhood sidewalks to improved lighting. Through her position as Chair of the city’s Quality of Life Committee, Cohen is also looking into modernizing a cost-inefficient golf course to include a Botanic Garden. These projects find different ways to improve her district's infrastructure while...
May's DMO of the Month Creates Sustainable Growth Achieving your goals is never entirely straightforward when working in government. Any lasting solution requires both public support and a practical execution. Limitations such as funding, technology, human resources, and existing infrastructure create stumbling blocks that can hinder development. The question of how to address community needs while sustaining both financial integrity and approval ratings is a crucial one. This month we visit Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero, who balances the needs of her constituents with a sensible approach to government.Rogero’s philosophy for development is 'rebuilding from the inside out'. By attracting funds to Knoxville’s downtown area, she sustains income flow into the city and directs money to the surrounding neighborhoods. This investment has brought in new lofts and restored other residential buildings in the downtown area. Noting the importance of partnerships formed between the public sector and private developers, Mayor Rogero frequently makes use of businesses to reinvest in the city while minimizing the impact on public funds. For instance, a proposed public-private partnership aims to lower airfare at the nearby McGhee Tyson Airport. With the Urban Wilderness project, Rogero and the Legacy Parks Foundation added new public outdoor spaces that neither...
April's DMO of the Month Transforms his Communities American cities face critical challenges on a daily basis. People expect their local elected officials to solve those issues, regardless of their scope or severity. April’s DMO of the month takes a unique approach to the problems confronting his city. Meet Columbus Mayor Michael Coleman, a DMO for whom every challenge presents an opportunity. This month we take a look at three of his initiatives, all of which take potential hazards and transform them into powerful city institutions. Blueprint Columbus is a revolutionary infrastructure project, which takes blighted properties and turns them into community assets. DMO was lucky enough to attend NLC’s Big Ideas for Cities event to hear Mayor Coleman discuss it in person. Many communities experience difficulty with floodwater, especially when that water overloads sewer systems. Blueprint Columbus seeks to intercept excess water before it becomes a problem. Through rain gardens and other landscape features, Blueprint Columbus diverts, stores, and manages water above ground. Empty lots and unused properties have been targeted for the first of these developments, transforming under-utilized land into locations that create neighborhood value and take pressure off sewer infrastructure. Mayor Coleman confronts a problem as unattractive...
Our DMO of the Month Advances the March of Equality President Barack Obama has declared 2014 a Year of Action. This initiative includes turning public focus to how towns and cities are leading the way on national issues. Municipalities are the laboratories where new policies are tested, and where local voices move forward despite national gridlock. In Michigan, cities are leading the way on technology, innovation, and equality. Recently, President Obama signed his historic Farm Bill in East Lansing, highlighting the crucial role Michigan communities play in feeding the nation. This month DMO joins the President in recognizing East Lansing. Meet Nathan Triplett, a mayor dedicated to the fight for equality, and our DMO of the Month for March. East Lansing has long lead the nation in anti-discrimination efforts. In 1972, the city was the first in America to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. In celebration of 40 years of non-discrimination, local officials from across the state have come together to champion civil equality. Not least among these is Mayor Triplett, who vocally supports LEAD (Local Electeds Against Discrimination) and similar LGBT non-discrimination efforts. Mayor Triplett also understands that full equality doesn’t stop at the right...
February's DMO of the Month is Devoted to Livability This month we recognize a local Democrat committed to making her city the most livable in the nation. Meet Jane Grover, Alderman from Evanston, Illinois and DMO of the Month for February. Part of encouraging a town to be more responsive to local government is good communication. Alderman Grover excels at staying in touch with her constituents. The Alderman releases regular e-newsletters to her community, which advertise ward events, highlight extraordinary Ward 7 residents, and profile new businesses. These newsletters encourage community participation, and allow the Alderman to keep her constituents informed and engaged. She is also active on twitter @janegrover. Here she dispels urban myths about Evanston, provides interesting history tidbits, and promotes student events at Northwestern University. Online communication is a fantastic way to stay connected to residents, and reaching out frequently reinforces the image of an open and accessible municipal government Local initiatives also play a huge role in maintaining a livable Evanston. As an avid biker and runner, Alderman Grover promoted a ban on cell phone use while driving within city limits. This same commitment to safe roadways led Evanston to install protected bike lanes, which secured...
January's DMO of the Month Puts Neighborhoods First Here at Democratic Municipal Officials, we know that DMOs represent every kind of community. One of the major challenges local Democrats face is breathing life back into struggling neighborhoods. For January’s DMO of the Month we recognize a municipal official who stands tall for his neighborhood. He knows that dedicated local government is the key to creating better conditions in the communities where his constituents live and work. Meet David Alvarez, Council Member for San Diego’s District 8, Democratic candidate for Mayor of San Diego, and January’s DMO of the Month. Growing up in Barrio Logan was a formative experience for Councilman Alvarez. The neighborhood is a patchwork of homes and businesses, where residences are wedged between chemical plants. While access to the ocean makes it a prime location for industry, families who live nearby have had to endure the resulting fumes and runoff. Councilmember Alvarez attributes his own asthma to the air conditions in Barrio Logan. The disparity between conditions in his own neighborhood and others in San Diego prompted Alvarez take up community activism with the Environmental Health Coalition. Upon finishing college he took jobs as a social worker and...
DMO of the Year 2013
Meet Chuck Lesnick, DMO of the Year 2013 This was the first year that Democratic Municipal Officials has held elections for DMO of the Year. As we gathered in Seattle, Yonkers City Council President Chuck Lesnick was chosen by our membership from among this year's DMOs of the Month. Below is what was written about Chuck Lesnick back when he was named DMO of the Month for February. In their endorsement of Chuck Lesnick for mayor of Yonkers, New York in 2011, the New York League of Conservation Voters said of the city council president, "While various elected officials come in different shades of green, Chuck is deep green and a true progressive.” On the first Earth Day after he was elected Yonkers City Council president in 2005, Chuck formed the city’s Green Policy Task Force, to provide policymaking advice to the City Council and to advise on environmental opportunities, such as the $300,000 grant which they applied for and received, to enable the Yonkers Public Schools to retrofit school buses and remove harmful emissions. Each year on Earth Day, Chuck joins local environmentalists, Native-Americans, clergy and school children in Yonkers to draw support for environmental protection by "blessing” the...
Meet our DMO of the Month for November With Wendy Davis running for Governor and Battleground Texas working hard to turn out Democratic voters, the prospect of a blue Texas has been widely discussed. Some would argue that progressive values could never take root in the Lone Star State. This month we take a look at a true blue Democratic Municipal Official thriving in the heart of Texas. Lee Leffingwell is a lifelong Austinite who now serves as the city’s Mayor. Mayor Leffingwell is living proof that Democratic values are alive and well in Texas. Born and raised in Austin, Lee Leffingwell graduated from the University of Texas with a degree in mechanical engineering. After college he served in Vietnam as an officer and pilot in the Navy. Upon leaving active duty he remained in the Navy Reserves, retiring at the rank of Commander with over twenty years of military service. For the next three decades he worked as a commercial airline pilot. Lee Leffingwell was first elected to the Austin City Council in 2005, and became Mayor four years later. Mayor Leffingwell is a true Austinite, and embodies the unique cultural values of the town. He plays a major...
Meet our DMO of the Month for October, Doris McConnell Democratic municipal officials have a huge advantage when it comes to serving their constituents. Those who hold local office are closer to the people than any other elected position. A strong sense of community engagement can be the defining factor in what makes a great DMO. As DMO heads to the state of Washington for the National League of Cities’ Congress of Cities and Exposition, we thought we would introduce you to one such official. Doris McConnell, a Council Member from Shoreline, Washington is October’s DMO of the Month. Council Member McConnell’s local focus shines through in her service, whether she is promoting economic development in Shoreline or lobbying for changes to national policy. Councilmember McConnell found a home in Shoreline after a childhood of moving from place to place. Her father served with the US Army, prompting regular changes of address. She received her Bachelors of Science in psychology from Washington State University. Doris became a single mother in 1998 after her husband lost his fight with cancer. She has raised two children and works today as a real estate investor. Doris entered local politics in 2007. Tired of...
Sandra Colvin Roy and R.T. Rybak
Meet Sandra Colvin Roy and R.T. Rybak, City Council Member and Mayor, Minneapolis - DMOs of the Month for September This month we recognize the tenure of two fantastic outgoing Democratic Municipal Officials. Sandra Colvin Roy represents Minneapolis’ 12th Ward as Councilwoman, promoting public safety and local infrastructure. R.T. Rybak is the city’s Mayor, and makes a special effort to personally engage his constituents. Both are exemplars of Democratic service, and share a passion for modern transit and community outreach. Council Member Colvin Roy and Mayor Rybak have each decided not to seek re-election. This September we honor the service of two municipal officials who uphold our Democratic values in word and deed. First elected to the City Council in 1997, Council Member Colvin Roy has a history of local activism. Public safety is one of her core issues, whether it’s reducing neighborhood crime or campaigning to stop domestic violence. Sandra is a key advocate for Restorative Justice, working to end cycles of abuse. She is also a major proponent of firefighters in Minneapolis, ensuring they have the staff to handle any emergency. Sandra Colvin Roy serves as a Democrat of note both locally and nationally. She has contributed to the...
Meet our DMO of the Month, Edna Jackson Leads by Example! At Democratic Municipal Officials, we know that issues in the national spotlight often get their start at the local level. With the renewed attacks on voting rights throughout the United States, municipal Democrats stand as citizens' front line of defense. This month we look to Edna Jackson as an example of a municipal official who has committed her life to equality, enfranchisement, and public service. She reminds us that national change begins in our towns and cities. Mayor Jackson got her start during the Civil Rights movement. A life-long NAACP member, she participated in sit-ins and similar occupations of Savannah’s beaches and churches. At the age of 18 she joined the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. During this time she traveled throughout Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, and Georgia conducting voter registration drives and demonstrations with the NAACP National Youth Task Force. Given her dedication to activism, it is no surprise that Edna Jackson is the first African-American woman to be elected Mayor of Savannah. Edna Jackson earned both her bachelors and masters degrees from Savannah State University, staying on at the school as an administrator for 30...
Our DMO of the Month, Bill Peduto is going places! Democratic Municipal Officials is proud to provide a community that helps our members accede to wider office. July’s DMO of the Month is Bill Peduto, one such Democrat who is stepping up to implement his ideas on a larger scale. Bill has served as Council Member for Pittsburgh’s East End neighborhoods since 2001, while also investing serious hours in volunteer work and community service organizations. Bill, like many DMO leaders, is one of those officials who leave us wondering when he has time to sleep. Certainly not after his recent primary win, as he is expected to serve as Pittsburgh’s next mayor. Bill’s long journey to where he is now has seen him build a lifetime of experience, from busboy and sidewalk painter to running a political consulting business and serving as a political director for Governor Mark Singel. His extensive work history might be best exemplified by finally receiving his diploma from Penn State in 2007. At the time he was the only member of the Pittsburgh City Council to hold a bachelor’s degree, resolving that he needed to matriculate to better address the issues facing the city....
Meet our DMO of the Month, Tempe City Council Member Joel Navarro Our DMO of the Month, Joel Navarro may be made for Hollywood, but Tempe is glad to have him. We all love to honor our first responders. Visit a city council meeting anywhere, and you are likely to see the members rising to honor their city’s finest. We look to our emergency personnel after a weather tragedy, an act of violence, or an emergency down the block. These days, they are especially on our minds as our cities struggle to resolve pension funding challenges. And today, we have a very special first responder on our minds, as he is also our DMO of the Month. Joel Navarro is a City Council Member in Tempe, Arizona and serves on the National League of Cities’ Public Safety and Crime Prevention Policy and Advocacy Committee, and is Second Vice-President of the NLC Hispanic Elected Local Officials (HELO) Board of Directors. Navarro is a Captain and Paramedic with the Phoenix Fire Department where he has served since 1995. While still a newcomer to his council, Navarro learned a valuable lesson that we are seeing play out all over the country. Voters are...
Meet our DMO of the Month, Los Angeles Mayor-Elect Eric Garcetti It was Eric Garcetti who, as DMO Chairman first imagined the "DMO of the Month” award as a means of highlighting the diversity of municipal officials we represent, while showcasing local success. Eric Garcetti, better than anyone, understands that our cities are laboratories for government innovation. It is no surprise that Angelenos just elected him to lead their city in these trying but exciting times. As DMO’s immediate Past Chairman and now, Chair Emeritus, Eric Garcetti led DMO from an organization of 400, to 6000. He not only grew our membership ten-fold, but our fundraising as well. Under his leadership we established State Chapters in 35 states and developed a strong, engaged and dynamic Board of Directors that is taking DMO the next steps. While doing all this, he was focused first at home. As a City Council member and Council President, neighborhoods in his district including Hollywood, Echo Park, Silver Lake and Atwater Village have been dramatically revitalized. The Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce ranks Eric’s council district number one in job growth. Eric worked to cut violent crime by 2/3, triple the number of parks in his...
Stephen J. Murphy and Ayanna Pressley
Meet Stephen J. Murphy and Ayanna Pressley, Boston, MA Council Members And Bombing Comforters In the wake of the bombings in Boston Massachusetts earlier this month, our hearts and minds turned to the cities of Boston and Cambridge. We watched proudly as Democratic Municipal Officials there rose to the occasion. Today we honor two of them as our DMOs of the Month. Stephen J. Murphy, At-Large Member and President of the Boston City Council, was just steps away when the bombs exploded. Council President Murphy spent the hours and days after the event reflecting on his own near-miss, but also helping Bostonians and the rest of us understand what had happened from a human perspective. He presented a calm face to the media and was an important voice in how the story got told. Here are two news reports featuring DMO of the Month Steve Murphy: http://www.latimes.com/news/nation/nationnow/la-na-nn-high-heel-boston-20130420,0,4218525.story http://www.bloomberg.com/video/boston-still-searching-for-answers-gpaG_feORISKeGMjbQZP4A.html Our co-honoree this month is Boston City Councillor Ayanna Pressley. Pressley was featured by Black Entertainment Television at BET.com for her immediate spring into action after the bombings occurred. They tell her story well. http://www.bet.com/news/national/2013/04/16/a-boston-city-council-member-works-overtime-to-help-with-healing.html From virtually the moment she heard the news of the explosions, Ayanna Pressley’s life has been nothing...
Meet Jill Duson, Portland Maine City Council Member and new member of the DMO Council of Policy Leaders DMO is now forming a Council of Policy Leaders (see Council of Policy Leaders Statement of Purpose below), led by DMO Board Member Mayor David Mayer of Gloucester, NJ. One of our founding members of the Council is Jill Duson, a city council member from Portland Maine who twice served as mayor of her city, and who brings a depth and breadth of experience to the Council that we know will help us take our work to great heights. Council Member Duson grew up in poverty, the daughter of a polio survivor. She watched her mother participate in a rent strike to improve their living conditions. She watched strength in the face of adversity, and she became that strength. One of five children, and the only one of her siblings to graduate from high school, Duson went on to earn a JD from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and a Certificate in Senior Executives in State & Local Government from the Kennedy School of Government. She currently serves as the Manger of the Compliance Division for the Maine Human Rights Commission....
Meet Chuck Lesnick, Yonkers, NY Council President and DMO New York State Chair In their endorsement of Chuck Lesnick for mayor of Yonkers, New York in 2011, the New York League of Conservation Voters said of the city council president, "While various elected officials come in different shades of green, Chuck is deep green and a true progressive.” On the first Earth Day after he was elected Yonkers City Council president in 2005, Chuck formed the city’s Green Policy Task Force, to provide policymaking advice to the City Council and to advise on environmental opportunities, such as the $300,000 grant which they applied for and received, to enable the Yonkers Public Schools to retrofit school buses and remove harmful emissions. Each year on Earth Day, Chuck joins local environmentalists, Native-Americans, clergy and school children in Yonkers to draw support for environmental protection by "blessing” the Hudson River. Last year the blessing took place on the Science Barge, a prototype sustainable urban farm developed by NY Sun Works and acquired by Groundwork Hudson Valley in October, 2008 (with Chuck’s own $2.00 bill) and operated since then on the Yonkers waterfront as an environmental education center. Chuck has also championed green initiatives...
Meet our history making DMO of the Month, Mayor Johnny DuPree With the recent appointment of former DMO Vice-Chair Stephanie Rawlings-Blake (mayor of Baltimore, MD) as DNC Secretary, we can't help but reflect on the role DMO plays as the farm team for the Democratic Party, and today we honor one of the many DMOs who have put themselves forth to represent our party for "wider" office. Hattiesburg, Mississippi, Mayor Johnny L. DuPree, Ph.D. made history in 2010 when he became the first African American to win a major party’s nomination for governor in Mississippi since Reconstruction. Though he ended up losing to the Republican nominee in what was a tough year for Democrats, Mayor DuPree won the respect of supporters and opponents alike with his positive, dignified and energetic campaign. During both the Democratic primary and the general election, Mayor DuPree refrained from negative campaigning even though he was matched against much better financed opponents. "I think that people have enough of that kind of campaigning in other places in America,” Mayor DuPree said at the time. "I don’t do that, never have done that. I’m not going to start now.” Mayor DuPree’s gubernatorial race wasn’t the first time...
James Mitchell, Jr. and Greg Pettis
DMO of the Year 2012
Meet our DMO of the Year James Mitchell, Jr., Council Member, Charlotte, NC As Democratic leaders across the country pack our bags to head to Charlotte, NC for the Democratic National Convention, the DMO leadership does so with very special place in our hearts for Charlotte. And we name our DMO of the Month from Charlotte. Our beloved and late Chair Emeritus, Susan Burgess served as Mayor Pro-Tem and City Council Member in Charlotte until her passing in 2010. She was instrumental in bringing the Convention to Charlotte, and the City of Charlotte is honoring her today. DMO will honor her at our reception on Wednesday with our Susan Burgess Memorial Award for a DMO committed to improving public education. Mayor Chris Coleman (St. Paul) was our 2011 honoree. Come meet our 2012 honoree, and say hello to Susan's family who will join us as our special guests. DMO thanks our 2012 Convention event sponsors, Hudson News, the National Association of Broadcasters, and Harris & Harris. With Charlotte on our mind, and in our hearts, it is only fitting that we bestow our DMO of the Month Award on a well-deserving member of the Charlotte City Council, and the Immediate...
Bernita Sims, Mayor of High Point, NC Every Democratic Municipal Official is busy. But Bernita Sims is really busy! We know we have paid a lot of attention to North Carolina this year, and today, we are going to go there again. After all, we are working to paint that state BLUE! Congratulations to MAYOR Bernita Sims. Many of us have known Bernita Sims a a Council Member from High Point, North Carolina. We know her as a National League of Cities (NLC) Board Member, and a member of the NLC Search Committee charged with hiring the new Executive Director. We know her as a Delegate to the Democratic National Convention, and as an officer in the DMO North Carolina State Chapter. Here's what she's been up to in North Carolina, "She has been a member of the High Point City Council since December, 2003, where she has served as liaison to the High Point Museum Board and the Human Relations Commission, is the current Chair of the Public Services Committee, is a member of the Special and Planning Committee and serves as liaison to the local Alcohol and Beverage Commission.She was elected Mayor Pro-Tem in December of 2005 by...
Dina Long, Mayor of Seabright, NJ As President Obama tours New Jersey today, we also have New Jersey on our minds. This week of Sandy's devastation was notable for us as we watched municipal leaders spring into action all over our nation. We applaud all of them, regardless of party, for their tireless work and their commitment to the safety and well-being of their constituents. But while Mayor Bloomberg was dominating the airwaves and Mayor Booker was dominating on twitter, we were watching for the unsung heroes. Thanks to Mayor Dina Long's twitter feed @seabrightmayor, and facebook page we know that is not true - - and her constituents know it also. But we also know Sea Bright is a scene of devastation, and that the popular ocean front clubs in this resort community are simply gone. Today, as residents were trying to return, but were held back because of a dangerous gas leak, Mayor Long posted updates, urged residents to exercise patience, and provided photos of the community. Thanks to her, residents knew that while the clubs are gone, and that damages are "catastrophic", homes are still standing. Before the storm, the Mayor personally made calls to residents urging...
South Miami’s Mayor, Dr. Phillip Stoddard The public service commitment of Democratic Municipal Officials ranges from part time volunteer public servants who may only receive a small stipend, or no stipend for their work, to those who serve full-time and are professionally compensated to serve in that capacity. The range of careers from which DMOs hail is truly representative of America. DMOs are doctors, attorneys, small business owners, farmers, and veterinarians. Today, we honor an educator and scientist who brings that expertise to bear as he works to protect and improve the lives of his constituents. Dr. Phillip Stoddard is a popular tenured professor in the Biological Sciences Department at Florida International University (FIU), a vibrant public research university. He is a broadly trained biological scientist, with specializations in animal behavior and neurobiology. In 1992, he moved from Cornell University to FIU, where he teaches undergraduate biology courses, graduate courses, and directs doctoral students. He is active in faculty leadership on campus and is funded by the National Science Foundation to study how dishonesty affects communication systems. On his campaign website, Dr. Stoddard defines his values: Professional values Honesty is the trade of a scientist. As a scientist I must...
James Mitchell, Jr.
City Council Member from Charlotte, NC and Immediate Past-President of the National League of Cities As Democratic leaders across the country pack our bags to head to Charlotte, NC for the Democratic National Convention, the DMO leadership does so with very special place in our hearts for Charlotte. And we name our DMO of the Month from Charlotte. Our beloved and late Chair Emeritus, Susan Burgess served as Mayor Pro-Tem and City Council Member in Charlotte until her passing in 2010. She was instrumental in bringing the Convention to Charlotte, and the City of Charlotte is honoring her today. DMO will honor her at our reception on Wednesday with our Susan Burgess Memorial Award for a DMO committed to improving public education. Mayor Chris Coleman (St. Paul) was our 2011 honoree. Come meet our 2012 honoree, and say hello to Susan's family who will join us as our special guests. DMO thanks our 2012 Convention event sponsors, Hudson News, the National Association of Broadcasters, and Harris & Harris. With Charlotte on our mind, and in our hearts, it is only fitting that we bestow our DMO of the Month Award on a well-deserving member of the Charlotte City Council, and...
Richard Fimbres, Tucson Ward 5 Council Member A monthly newsletter, a blog, and an active Facebook page are just a few of the ways Tucson, Arizona City Council Member Richard Fimbres keeps his constituents informed of his good works, and happenings in his ward and his city. We suspect Richard Fimbres honed these communication skills wile serving as Director of the Arizona Governor’s Office of Highway Safety (GOHS). GOHS provides leadership by developing, promoting, and coordinating programs; influencing public and private policy; and increasing public awareness of highway safety. When then Governor-elect Janet Napolitano made the announcement of Fimbres as her appointee (Dec. 12, 2002), she stated, "With his solid law enforcement background, Richard is uniquely positioned to bring a renewed focus to highway safety issues as our state’s population continues to increase as does the challenge of keeping Arizona safe as the highways grow”. Under his leadership, Arizona led the nation in seat belt usage in 2004, and in 2007 Arizona saw an 18% reduction in highway fatalities. Fimbres served in the post for six-and-a-half years. A lifelong resident of Tucson, Mr. Fimbres received his education there and went on to serve in the United States Army. He is...
Harvey Johnson Jr.
Meet our DMO of the Month Mayor of Jackson, Mississippi Harvey Johnson Jr. While best known for his impressive accomplishments as Mayor of Jackson, Mississippi, Mayor Havey Johnson Jr.’s commitment to public service and his work for the Democratic Party stretch far beyond his role as Mayor. Democratic Municipal Officials is proud to honor Mayor Johnson as our DMO of the Month for his lifetime commitment to public service, municipal planning, and Democratic success. Here is Mayor Johnson’s official biography. We think you’ll agree that he is an exemplary DMO of the Month. Harvey Johnson, Jr. was born in the River City of Vicksburg, Mississippi. He received his early education in the Vicksburg Public School District, where he graduated from Rosa A. Temple High School. He went on to receive a bachelor’s degree in political science from Tennessee State University and a master’s degree in political science from the University of Cincinnati. He has done additional study toward a doctoral degree in public administration at the University of Southern California’s Washington Public Affairs Center. Johnson was awarded an honorary degree, Doctor of Humane Letters, from Tougaloo College. Johnson served as the founding Executive Director of the Center for University-Based Development...
Meet our DMO of the Month Timothy Scott Carlisle, PA Council Vice-President DMO represents elected officials from cities, towns, villages, townships and yes, boroughs. A voting member of our now-forming Pennsylvania State Chapter, which is led by State Chair Bill Peduto of Pittsburgh, the Carlisle Borough Vice-President Tim Scott caught our eye as a DMO whose career we want to watch. Councilman Tim Scott became the second African-American elected to the Carlisle Borough Council in 2001 and was reelected in 2005 and 2009. Tim holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Political Science from Old Dominion University and is currently employed as a policy analyst for the Democratic Caucus of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives specializing in telecommunications, natural gas and broadband/cable issues. Tim chairs the Community Planning/Quality of Life Committee for Borough Carlisle and co-chairs the Council’s Historic District Guideline Review Committee and is vice-chairman of the Parks and Recreation Committee. Since first winning elected office in 2001, Tim has worked to make Carlisle a better place to live, work and raise and family. His list of achievements include: -Securing over $7 million dollars in grant funding for smart transportation initiatives and upgrades to the Borough’s aging sewer facility....
Meet our DMO of the Month Tampa City Council Member, Mary Mulhern The Republican Party may be planning to descend on Tampa in August for the Republican National Convention, but they aren't the only ones shaking things up in Tampa. Meet Tampa City Council Member, Mary Mulhern. Mary Mulhern led the Tampa City Council to pass by a 5-0 vote, a resolution calling for a Constitutional amendment to overturn the Citizens United decision. Read the opinion here: http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/09pdf/08-205.pdf As you may recall, DMO passed a similar resolution in March. If your city is in the process of considering such a resolution, there are organizations who will help you build the community support for the resolution that will help create the momentum we need to take this to Congress. Please contact Barbara Moore if you want to connect with local leaders from United Republic, Public Citizen, and Democracy Unlimited and Move to Amend. She'll put you in touch! DMO this month honors Mary Mulhern for her leadership on this issue and more. Mary Mulhern is a leader in her city on issues of government transparency, pension management, green jobs, economic development, and trade. She has been a leader in preparing her...
Gretchen Driskell, Mayor of Saline, Michigan The first woman elected to the office of mayor in the United States was Susanna Salter who took office in Argonia, Kansas in 1887. This was the first time a woman was elected to any political office in the United States. However, it wasn’t until nearly a century later that Ruth Braden McNamee was elected the first woman mayor in the State of Michigan when she was elected in Birmingham in 1970. Today we honor another history-making female mayor as our DMO of the Month. Mayor Gretchen Driskell is the first woman elected Mayor of Saline, Michigan, and holds the distinction of being Saline’s longest serving Mayor. Gretchen Driskell is our DMO of the Month for her leadership both locally and nationally. She began her political career as a member of the Saline city council in 1993 where she served until she was elected Mayor in 1999. She is a board member of the National League of Cities. She is a former Vice President and board member of the Michigan Municipal League. Grethen Driskell is working with us to engage fellow Democratic Municipal Officials in Michigan in our work, in hopes of starting a...
Yiaway Yeh, Mayor of Palo Alto, CA As the mayor of any metropolitan city knows, one must possess many qualities that address the needs of their constituency. The ability to have both long-range vision in addition to tackling the daily economic and social issues affecting their residents is paramount. This calls for a leader unafraid to make the difficult decisions now in order to make residential life better for future generations. Mayor Yiaway Yeh, with a life-long love of community service, tackled a critical social issue effecting the teen population of Palo Alto. His focus on the environmental future of his Palo Alto residents is shaping into one of the most progressive initiatives in the country. He leads Palo Alto with a vision that community life and the active engagement of its citizens is the foundation for shaping public policy and moving the social, economic and environmental conversation forward. For this reason and more, DMO is proud to name Mayor Yiaway Yeh as our February DMO of the Month. Growing up in Palo Alto (known to the world as Silicon Valley) and introduced to the world of public service as a high school student, Yeh was raised with a respect...
Councilman Greg Pettis (Cathedral City, CA) California is best known for its temperate climate and palm trees. Nestled between Palm Springs and RanchoMirage, Cathedral City is small in population but towers above other cities in innovative environmental and community health programs. Councilman Greg Pettis led the way in a long list of progressive public policy initiatives. Since his election to the City Council in 1994, Pettis has wor ked tirelessly to help build an economically vibrant community and strong neighborhoods. A true leader, Pettis volunteered to serve as DMO's founding California State Chair and has successfully organized DMO's first official State Chapter which will be formally chartered at our March 13 National Breakfast Meeting in Washington DC. With the backing of his fellow DMO Chapter officers, Mayor Gilbert Wong of Cupertino and Council Member Sedalia Sanders of El Centro, Pettis is poised to make DMO a strong force in California this year. For this leadership and much more, DMO is proud to name Greg Pettis our January DMO of the Month. From an early age, Greg Pettis felt the call of public service. Inspired by a speech by Robert Kennedy in 1968, Pettis continuously strives to push the boundaries of...
Meet our DMO of the Year Mayor Cindy Lerner is taking the lead in Florida This is what we wrote about Mayor Lerner earlier this year when she was named DMO of the Month: This Month, DMO honors one of our own. Our new DMO Florida State Chair is taking her state by storm. Mayor Cindy Lerner of Pinecrest Florida is well on the way to establishing a DMO Chapter for her state and is working to ensure that Democratic Municipal Officials in Florida will play a strong role in re-electing President Obama in 2012. Mayor Lerner is identifying and organizing DMOs in her state, and is bringing them together for action.Mayor Lerner this month organized a reception for Democratic attendees of the Florida League of Cities' Annual Conference.She raised the funds for a nice reception, recuited help in identifying which members were DMOs, and then went to work reaching out. Over 100 Florida DMOs attended the reception sponsored by LSN Partners. The DMOs were eager to get tied in to the work of DMO, and to the Democratic Party.Obama For America's FloridaState Director Ashley Walker addressed the group, and Mayor Lerner went to work organizing DMO members...
November DMO of the Month Otto Lee Nestled in the Silicon Valley—a name synonymous with innovation—sits Sunnyvale, California. Sunnyvale is a thriving business and residential community due in large part to an actively engaged city council.As one of the first Asian-American City Council members, Otto Lee has served in different governing roles—from steering building and economic development initiatives as Planning Commissioner to establishing the Mayoral Green Ribbon Committee to raise awareness ofcritical environmental issues. Lee continued his civic commitment and served as Vice-Mayor then Mayor in 2008 to the town he has calledhome since the 1990's. Otto Lee has been instrumental in building Democratic Municipal Officials into a strong national organization and currently serves as Treasurer of our organization. But term limits have unintended consequences. We know they can lead to scenarios for cities where bureaucrats who are not elected and accountable have too much control, and for DMO, term limits can steal great leaders from us. Otto Lee's City Council term ends this year, and so his tenure on our Board. However, we are honored to announce that Otto Lee has accepted the role of Founding Chairman of the DMO Democratic Leaders Advisory Board. In this capacity he will...
From the Mile-High City: Meet our DMO of the Month: Debra Johnson, Denver City Clerk and Recorder of Deeds Colorado, known for its majestic mountains, embodies a quiet strength and Debra Johnson personifies that spirit. In 2000, as Aurora County Clerk, she led the movement to an electronic filing system—creating a seamless, cost-effective election reporting system. Johnson also coordinated several general and local elections for the city, which covered city, county, state and congressional districts. She has helped shape policy for the National League of Cities and has extensive experience in city governance. Now, as the newly elected Denver City Clerk and Recorder of Deeds, a recently won court challenge made her the national face of a contentious voters rights issue. It thrust her to the forefront of a legal battle trying to preserve the most precious right we have as a democracy— the federal right to vote. This month, DMO is proud to name Debra Johnson our DMO of the month. There is a GOP movement slowly churning its way through six Republican-controlled states, including Texas, Wisconsin, South Carolina, Alabama, Kansas and Tennessee—seeking to make it more difficult for individuals to cast their vote. Several bills passed in...
Meet Our DMO of the Month: Brad Lander, NYC Council Member From the Columbia Waterfront inland, Brad Lander is making waves in New York City. We got to know Council Member Lander through his efforts to bring Participatory Budgeting to New York City. Participatory Budgeting was first launched in the United States three years ago by DMO's Past President, Joe Moore of Chicago. This month, DMO is proud to name Brad Lander our DMO of the Month for many reasons. Brad Lander is finding creative ways to engage his constituents in community problem-solving. Lander uses Google mapping technology to track stalled development projects in his community, and to engage residents in helping solve the problems those sites can create. You can check out how he is using it here: http://bradlander.com/stalleddevelopment. Lander has developed a "Shop Local" campaign and invites community residents to nominate local businesses for a "Shop Local Award." He invites his constituents to serve their community and helps connect volunteers with service opportunities. http://bradlander.com/getting-started-in-service Lander last year organized a "School Food Rocks" conference to bring together parents, educators, students, SchoolFood staff, and food activists to learn about how they can work together to achieve healthier and more...
Meet our DMO of the Month: Mayor Cindy Lerner is taking the lead in Florida This Month, DMO honors one of our own. Our new DMO Florida State Chair is taking her state by storm. Mayor Cindy Lerner of Pinecrest Florida is well on the way to establishing a DMO Chapter for her state and is working to ensure that Democratic Municipal Officials in Florida will play a strong role in re-electing President Obama in 2012. Mayor Lerner is identifying and organizing DMOs in her state, and is bringing them together for action.Mayor Lerner this month organized a reception for Democratic attendees of the Florida League of Cities' Annual Conference.She raised the funds for a nice reception, recuited help in identifying which members were DMOs, and then went to work reaching out. Over 100 Florida DMOs attended the reception sponsored by LSN Partners. The DMOs were eager to get tied in to the work of DMO, and to the Democratic Party. Obama For America's FloridaState Director Ashley Walker addressed the group, and Mayor Lerner went to work organizing DMO members for future action. As a result of her work, DMO increased our Florida membership, built a strong new network,...
Meet our DMO of the Month: Greenville City Council Member Jil Littlejohn We found Jil Littlejohn on Twitter. You can find her @jillittlejohn, and we would like to find you on Twitter also. Follow us @NationalDMO, and let us know to follow you. We "Re-Tweet" DMOs to show the world the wide range of issues our members address on a daily basis, and to provide you with a place to keep up with your colleagues, and find new ones. Jil Littlejohn drew our attention for the commitment she has to her community, and for the way she opts to use social media, integrating personal tidbits with items of community interest. With nearly 1000 followers in a district of less than 15,000, she's doing something right. Council Member Littlejohn represents one of four districts in Greenville, a city of 58,409 (Population is up 4.3%). Two additional Council Members and the Mayor are elected At-Large. Council Member Littlejohn has a dynamic biography, and is viewed by some as a rising star in South Carolina politics. Jil has a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from Webster University in Greenville and a Bachelors of Arts in Intercultural Studies for Business from Wofford College (2001)...
Meet our DMO of the Month: Phoenix City Council Member Michael Nowakowski Faces Tea Party Opponents, Stands Strong for Democratic Values, Organized Labor and a Safe, Diverse, Empowered Community The Tea Party is not only active at the congressional level, they are coming on strong in municipal races around the country. While many municipal races are defined as 'non-partisan' without the familiar primary and general election structure, they are often anything but - - and DMO works to support Democratic Municipal Officials. Our DMO of the Month is Michael Nowakowski, a lifelong Phoenix resident and the son of a Mexican immigrant mother and first-generation Polish father. Elected in 2007, Councilman Nowakowski believes in "Keeping Neighborhoods First." As Co-Chair of the City of Phoenix's new Anti-Graffiti Task Force, Nowakowski has agressively attacked this blight in his district, while also initiating and hosting crime summits to instruct and engage residents on how to prevent crime in their communities. He hosts historic preservation summits, and gun buyback programs. He expedited the construction of a new police station in his district to house 200 police, and he held over 140 "Chats with the Councilman" to ensure he was accessible to his constituents and meeting...
White House Chief of Staff Joins the Ranks of DMORahm Emanuel Presides as Mayor of Chicago and is our DMO of the Month In most of our nation's city councils, a council member serves as "council president" and chairs the meetings. In Chicago’scity council, however,the mayorassumes the role of council president. Last week, former White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel took the gavel and for the first time in twenty-two years a new Mayor presided over a Chicago city council meeting. The first meeting with the new Mayor was largely ceremonial, though the Chicago City Council adopted a few new City Council rules and officially elected new City Council committee chairmen, including former DMO Chairman Joe Moore, who was elected to chair the Chicago City Council Committee on Human Relations. Mayor Emanuel has set the tone for his administration with a series of Executive Orders. Mayor Emanuel signed three "executive orders” creating significant new ethics rules, fulfilling his campaign pledge to promote transparency and accountability in City government. The Mayor also signed three executive orders on ethics originally issued by former Mayor Richard Daley. The first executive order prohibits new appointees from lobbying city government for two years...
Meet our DMO of the Month San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro If San Antonio, Texas Mayor Julián Castro isn't yet on your radar screen as a rising star in the Democratic Party, he should be. Castro rose from the ranks of the San Antonio City Council and was elected Mayor of the seventh largest city in the United States at the age of 34. This Harvard educated lawyer has been invited to the White House to advise President Obama on jobs and immigration, and has been drawing national media attention, including a feature article in the New York Times Magazine. His twin brother Joaquín serves in the Texas state legislature and his mother, Rosie Castro is a civil rights leader well-known in Texas politics and beyond. Julián and Joaquín grew up in political circles, so while they may be young, they are far from inexperienced. Mayor Castro is positioning San Antonio as the city of the future, where a majority minority city can thrive and where residents of diverse backgrounds and socio-ecomomic status can come together to improve the quality of life in their city. Wanting to ensure an educated workforce will be available to meet the growing job...
DMO of the Month: Jean Quan Organizes her way to the Mayor's Office From the White House to City Hall, citizens are electing community organizers to serve them in public office. Organizers trust the grassroots and they believe in citizen engagement. In many ways, they are the perfect leaders for these times when cynicism about government is so rampant. Jean Quan brings even stronger organizing credentials to her post as Mayor of Oakland, California than Barack Obama brought to the White House. From her college days at UC Berkeley organizing for civil rights and for the creation of Ethnic Studies courses, to her years as a National Organizer with SEIU, to her efforts as a parent organizer, fighting to keep arts and music programming in the Oakland Public Schools, Mayor Quan has a lifetime of experience learning how to bring people together to improve their communities and ensure government serves all the people. Like so many DMOs, Mayor Quan's years as a community activist led her to seek public office, first on the School Board and later as a City Council Member. Over her two terms on the City Council, Quan "built strategic coalitions and led major initiatives to save...
Green Bay Has Another Winner Meet our DMO of the Month, Alderman Ned Dorff In a month when the whole country is looking at Green Bay, Wisconsin for its winning football team, we thought we would take a look around to see what other winner we might find. So please meet our "Rookie of the Month." Alderman Ned Dorff is serving his first term on the Green Bay City Council, representing one of Green Bay's more progressive districts. In his first months in office, Alderman Ned Dorff faced a battle with a "tea bagger" over domestic partner benefits, helped bring a new roller coaster to Green Bay's Bay Beach, worked to pass a budget with no tax increase that not only saved but increased the number of city ice rinks, and managed to thoughfully and effectively deal with a heated zoning request for a new mosque in his district. And you thought Green Bay had nothing going on but football and ice fishing! A Wellstone Action Alumni, Ned Dorff is demonstrating poise and maturity in office. An effective communicator, Dorff is winning fans. Prior to taking office in 2011, Dorff worked as a Special Education Teacher in the the...
DMO of the Month Barbara Vaughan, Council Member from Lewes, DE Looks to the Past and the Future Barbara Vaughn tells us, "My passion is history." Council Member Vaughan puts that passion to work in her community. "The Lewes City application to become a Preserve America Community was successful and we subsequently received a grant to develop a Maritime History Sign Trail which helps tourists understand and appreciate Lewes' rich history." Vaughan explains. First settled in 1631 by Dutch colonists looking to establish a whaling community, Lewes, Delaware, (population 3,000) was the first colony in Delaware and has ever since played a pivotal role in Delaware’s history. Lewes has been home to generations of Delaware River and Bay pilots and was once the largest fishing port in the United States. The site of the current Canalfront Park is where, for more than 250 years, boats were built and launched into the canal. A Revolutionary War fortification was also built there, from which cannon fire was exchanged during the War of 1812 with a British ship anchored in the nearby Delaware Bay. Barbara Vaughan also looks to the future, and to the health and well-being of her community and its children....
Cambridge Vice-Mayor Named Democratic Municipal Official of the Year DENVER, CO / DECEMBER 3, 2010: The National Democratic Municipal Officials (DMO) proudly named Henrietta Davis, Vice Mayor from Cambridge Massachusetts, as Democratic Municipal Official of the Year 2010. Nearly 400 mayors, city council members, and other elected municipal officials from around the nation gathered in Denver, Colorado as DMO Chair, Eric Garcetti, (Los Angeles, CA) and DMO Executive Board Member and Representative to the Democratic National Committee Myron Lowery (Memphis, TN) were joined at the podium by the Democratic National Committee’s Vice-Chair Linda Chavez-Thompson, to present the award to Vice-Mayor Davis. Linda Chavez-Thompson honored Vice-Mayor Davis as the DMO’s first Democratic Municipal Official of the Year. "For her leadership within the National League of Cities, and who has improved the lives of her constituents through a focus on energy and the environment, alternative forms of transportation, neighborhood preservation, children’s health and quality living for senior citizens."The winner has spent much of her career working on issues of sustainability and has traveled abroad meeting with municipal officials, government, and business leaders around the world and serving as a green municipal ambassador to demonstrate how cities and towns in the U.S....
DMO of the Month John Sharp, Council Member from Kansas City Makes it Easier to Eat One's Vegetables John Sharp is working to make Kansas City, Missouri a supportive city for urban farms, community gardens and back yard gardeners alike. Sharp has amended the city zoning code to allow for urban farms with structures and livestock, and has created a system whereby home gardeners and community garden participants may apply for a special use to allow the donation or sale of whole, uncut produce from their abundance. Cities around the country are facing this challenge as urban gardening becomes an appealing option for putting otherwise vacant lots to productive use, encouraging entrepreneurship, and addressing climate change. Urban gardeners, spurred to start growing their own food often have become frustrated when city and state laws prevent them from legally sell their excess produce to their neighbors or at nearby farmers markets. John Sharp tackled this challenge by working cooperatively with Kansas City's urban farming community, city planners and others to create a workable revision to the city code. The ordinance as adopted is available here: KC Urban Farming Ordinance John Sharp serves in the 6th District seat on the City of...
Kacie Starr Triplett
DMO Of the Month: Kacie Starr Triplett Alderwoman, St. Louis, MO Featured in "O" Magazine, Triplett is Much More than a Fashionista Kacie Starr Triplett, a newly-elected Alderwoman in St. Louis, Missouri is drawing attention locally and nationally. Named one of "Nine Women who Master Power and Style" in Oprah Winfrey's "O" Magazine, Triplett is far more than a well-dressed woman. Her website defines her this way, "Elected at the age of 26 to the St. Louis Board of Aldermen, Kacie was sworn in as one the youngest elected leaders in the history of Saint Louis in April of 2007. As a life-long resident of the 6th Ward, Kacie has devoted her entire career to public service and improving her communities. "Alderman Triplett’s work and dedication has attracted national attention and recognition. She’s been featured in ALIVE Magazine’s as one of St. Louis’ local residents with the most "buzz” and in Ebony Magazine as a Young Leader Under 30. Alderman Triplett has also represented the United States during a bi-partisan delegation to East Asia where she studied the government and history of Vietnam. In 2008, the Riverfront Times named Triplett the Best Local Politician in the region. "During the presidential...
Winds of Change Blowing in Missoula, Montana and Allows Urban Wind Turbines Jason Wiener was elected to the Missoula, Montana City Council in 2007 and was elected Chair of the Missoula County Democrats in 2009. Wiener has worked to foster communication among council members as well as with the community. Originally from Concord, New Hampshire, Mr. Wiener has travelled throughout the country and has worked in many different fields including those of finance, teaching, and journalism. Weiner says that it is this broad-based experience which has truly helped him to gain the skills necessary for his position. Using the expertise gained from both teaching and journalism, he is adept at understanding how to best communicate his ideas and messages in ways which gain both the interest and respect of the public. Jason Wiener is an avid cyclist. His interest in cycling helped him develop an appreciation for sustainable development. Inter-modal transportantion is important to him, but so are other measures. Wiener understands that both infrastructure and land use can contribute to community sustainability, and have an effect on local energy use. It is for this reason that Councilman Wiener recently introduced an ordinance allowing wind generators to be built within...
Meet our DMO of the Month:Henrietta Davis Vice Mayor, Cambridge, Massachusetts Henrietta Davis has focused much of her career working on issues of sustainability and our environment. Now she's now taking that show on the road. Henrietta has traveled abroad to network with municipal officials and other government and business leaders, serving in an ambassodor-like capacity to demonstrate how municipalities in the U.S. are taking the lead on green building, neighborhood sustainability, and other environmental issues. She's simultaneously bringing home information on state-of-the-art technologies and best practices which she is putting to work making Cambridge, Massachussetts a model of sustainability. Last year, Henrietta Davis served as a delegate to the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen. At a meeting with US State Department officials in Copenhagen, Henrietta Davis testified about the on-going accomplishments of local governments and the need for federal support to expand and strengthen locally-led climate mitigation and adaptation efforts. Read More. Davis was joined by incoming DMO Executive Board Member, Matt Zone, and NLC Staff. In May, Henrietta participated in a Switzerland Study Tour on Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency. This public/private partnership provided Davis the opportunity to explore state-of-the art processes in waste-to-energy applications, building...
Philadelphia Mayor Michael NutterDemocratic Municipal Official of the Month
DMO is pleased to honor Mayor Michael Nutter of Philadelpia, for his innovative approaches to urban leadership. Mayor Nutter recently launched an initiative, Philly Goes 2 College.
The PhillyGoe2College office is a referral center within the Mayor’s Office of Education that helps Philadelphians of all ages earn a college degree. Recognizing the importance role education plays in his city's future, Mayor Nutter has made this a cornerstone of his administration.
Read more about this initiative and learn why DMO is proud to honor Mayor Michael Nutter as our Democratic Municipal Official of the Month.