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GovLove - A Podcast About Local Government-logo

GovLove - A Podcast About Local Government

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GovLove is a podcast about the people, policies and profession of local government. From Mayors and City Managers to interns and everyone in between, we interview the people making a difference in their communities to learn about the great work being done at the local level.

GovLove is a podcast about the people, policies and profession of local government. From Mayors and City Managers to interns and everyone in between, we interview the people making a difference in their communities to learn about the great work being done at the local level.
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United States


GovLove is a podcast about the people, policies and profession of local government. From Mayors and City Managers to interns and everyone in between, we interview the people making a difference in their communities to learn about the great work being done at the local level.




#172 Smart City Coordinator Kate Garman, Seattle, WA

The first Smart City Coordinator for the City of Seattle, Washington, Kate Garman, joined GovLove to talk about her role and her thoughts on tech and local government. Kate revealed what a day in her job is like, what makes a city "smart" and what working in Amazon's hometown is like. She also compared working for Kansas City, MO with Seattle and her advice for those entering the profession. Topics: Lightning round (0:45), How Kate got started in local government (5:40), Her definition of a...

Duration: 00:39:07

#171 The City of Detroit's Chief Storyteller, Aaron Foley

Aaron Foley is an author, journalist and now the Chief Storyteller for the City of Detroit, MI. He joined GovLove to talk about his position, which was created by the Mayor last year, and the unique work he's doing as a city employee. Aaron discussed his career path in journalism, the decision to take a job in local government and the importance of telling Detroit's stories. Topics: Lightning round (2:50), Aaron's career path & influence of his parents (7:55), Standing up for Detroit after...

Duration: 01:06:22

#170 City Manager Troy Schulte, Kansas City, MO

Leading Kansas City. Troy Schulte, the City Manager of Kansas City, MO, joined GovLove to talk about leading an organization of 4,400 employees. He discussed the City's bond program, using performance and data in local government, and the Royals World Series chances. He also talked about the challenges Kansas City faces and investing in the future. Topics: Lightning round (0:25), Troy’s career path in local government (10:20), Starting a performance office in Kansas City (15:55), The City's...

Duration: 00:49:26

#169 The GovieLovie Awards & 2017 Year End Look Back

We take the last episode of the year to recognize our favorite episodes and interviews of 2017. GovLove hosts Kent Wyatt, Kirsten Wyatt and Ben Kittelson all handed out awards in different categories to their 15 favorite episodes. The episode also covered the most listened to episodes of the year and plans for 2018. Topics: 2017 recap (1:05), Most listened to episodes (4:05), Segments! Best gifts & funniest ELGL thing in 2017 (7:55), The GovieLovie Awards (16:30), Looking ahead to 2018...

Duration: 01:14:58

#168 Placemaking with the Project for Public Spaces

Creating spaces for people. Two representatives from the Project for Public Spaces, Laura Torchio and Elka Gotfryd, joined the podcast to talk about how to shape and influences places. They discussed projects that they have worked on across the country, how engagement is important to placemaking and tools for people that want to do placemaking. Topics include: Lightning round (1:20), How Laura & Elka got into placemaking (6:45), The work of Project for Public Spaces (12:55), Their...

Duration: 00:47:06

#167 The New Urban Crisis with Richard Florida

The acclaimed writer, urbanist and best selling author, Richard Florida joins the podcast to discuss his new book and the challenges cities face. Richard is a professor and Director of Cities for the Martin Prosperity Institute at the University of Toronto, his most recent book "The New Urban Crisis" deals with the increases in inequality and segregation cities have experienced. He discusses the book, his love of Jimi Hendrix and the three T's of technology, talent and tolerance.

Duration: 00:46:30

#166 Gathering a Tribe of Civic Innovators in San Jose, CA and The Atlas

Improving collaboration and innovation in local government. Ellory Monks from The Atlas and Kip Harkness, the Deputy City Manager of San Jose, CA, join GovLove to talk about their work. The Atlas is a marketplace for local governments to work together and learn from each other on infrastructure projects. Kip leads the Office of Civic Innovation in San Jose. They discuss everything from juggling fire and celebrity look-a-likes to improving procurement and email management. Topics Include:...

Duration: 00:56:59

#165 Pay for Success Contracting with Brian Beachkofski, Third Sector Capital Partners

Paying for the service outcome rather than the cost of implementation. Brian Beachkofski from Third Sector Capital Partners joins GovLove to talk about a new contracting model called Pay for Success contracting. He shares examples of local governments using the model and how it can be more effective in delivering services to people. Topics: Lightning round (1:10), introducing the Pay for Success concept (3:25), examples of organizations like Los Angeles County using this model (4:40), the...

Duration: 00:34:06

#164 Player-Coach Management with Jestin Johnson, Athens-Clarke County, Georgia

Managing in a consolidated city and county government. Jestin Johnson, the Assistant Manager of Athens-Clarke County, GA consolidated government, joins the podcast to talk about his career path and management philosophy. He shared his strong opinions on parking, being a player-coach type of manager and how important town-gown relations are in Athens. Topics: Lightning round (0:30), Jestin's career background (4:45), what it's like working for a consolidated city-county government (10:50),...

Duration: 00:34:44

#163 Trends in Human Resources with Heidi Voorhees, GovHR USA

Recruiting & retaining talent in local government. Heidi Voorhees, the President of GovHR USA, joined GovLove to talk about the work of finding and attracting talented local government employees. Heidi discussed her experience as a Management Fellow in Kansas City, MO with current fellows Javon & Alyssa. She also talked about the importance of LinkedIn and the drawback of residency requirements. Topics: Lightning round (0:35), Heidi's experience as a Kansas City Management Fellow (3:30),...

Duration: 00:27:51

#162 Behavioral Insights & Benchmarking in Scottsdale, AZ with Brent Stockwell

Brent Stockwell, Assistant City Manager of Scottsdale, AZ, joined GovLove to discuss his work on performance measurement, behavioral insights and his favorite color. Brent described how Scottsdale is taking a new approach to simplifying city reports. He also shared his thoughts on diversity in local government and how tourism has shaped Scottsdale. Topics: Lightning round (1:20), using behavioral insights in Scottsdale (7:40), simplifying reports & communication (19:00), managing tourism...

Duration: 00:48:32

#161 GovLaunch, Connecting Startups & Cities with Barry Greenfield

What startups and local government can do to work better together. Barry Greenfield the Co-Founder of GovLaunch, a platform for local governments to compare and review technology solutions. Barry discusses his career path, which includes a stint as an elected official, and what local governments and startups can learn from each other. Topics: Lightning round (0:45), why Barry ran for local office (3:00), how local government can better engage (4:00), the mission of GovLaunch (7:00), what...

Duration: 00:22:48

#160 Serving with Your Whole Heart in Little Rock, Arkansas with Melissa Bridges & Susan Langley

Innovation, performance and public service in Little Rock. Two people from the City of Little Rock, AR join GovLove to talk about their work. Melissa Bridges, Performance & Innovation Coordinator, and Susan Langley, City Clerk, discuss the Commodores, their career paths and a cross-departmental quality of life group. Topics: Lighting round (2:30), how children impacted their careers (7:45), challenges and innovations in Little Rock (10:20), communicating to the public (19:25), what they...

Duration: 00:35:56

#159 Leadership & ICMA with Peggy Merriss, City Manager, Decatur, GA

Get to know the City Manager of Decatur, Georgia. Peggy Merriss joins GovLove to discuss her career in local government, which includes 24 years as City Manager and stints in leadership positions with ICMA. She talked about the projects going on in Decatur, her experience as a woman in local government and more. Topics: Lightning round (0:50), Peggy's career background (1:45), road diets (4:30), what keeps her in Decatur and how it's changed during her career (6:40), her time as ICMA's...

Duration: 00:31:45

#158 Managing Crisis in Gatlinburg, TN with City Manager Cindy Cameron Ogle

Forest fire and emergency response. Cindy Cameron Ogle the City Manager of Gatlinburg, Tennessee joins GovLove to discuss what it was like to manage the city through a forest fire that destroyed 2500 buildings last year. She shared her experience dealing with the crisis and how both her home and the Mayor's home were lost in the fire. Cindy also discussed her leadership style and her path to becoming a City Manager. Topics: Lighting round (1:10), Cindy's path into local government and...

Duration: 00:40:29

#157 Lean Six Sigma & Roundabouts with Jennifer Teal, City Administrator, Gahanna, OH

Leading Gahanna, Ohio and improving processes. City Administrator Jennifer Teal joins GovLove to discuss how she's used her black belt in Lean Six Sigma to improve operations and the unique way they taught residents to use roundabouts. Jennifer also shared her experience as a female City Administrator and how she balances her work and life. This interview was recorded from the 2017 ICMA Conference in San Antonio, TX.

Duration: 00:42:27

#156 Power to the People with Marc Ott, Executive Director of ICMA

From City Manager of Austin, Texas to leading ICMA, get to know Marc Ott. The Executive Director of the International City/County Management Association (ICMA), Marc Ott, joined GovLove to discuss his career path in local government and his first year on the job at ICMA. Marc also shared his thoughts on diversity in local government as well as the importance of cities in the age of ineffective federal and state governments.

Duration: 00:46:05

#155 Practical Innovation in Syracuse & Anchorage with Sam Edelstein & Brendan Babb

Open data and innovation from coast to coast. Brendan Babb, the Chief Innovation Officer of Anchorage, Alaska and Sam Edelstein, the Chief Data Officer of Syracuse, New York join GovLove. They answered questions from our listeners, talked about how innovation doesn't have to be fancy and the role of an innovation office in a city.

Duration: 01:09:26

#154 Battling Homelessness with Andrew Hening, San Rafael, CA

Local solutions to homelessness and practicing radical empathy. Andrew Hening the Director of Homeless Planning & Outreach for the City of San Rafael, California joins GovLove to discuss his work reducing the homeless population in Silicon Valley. He also discussed his career path into local government, from law school to Americorps Vista. Andrew Hening took the #1 spot in this year's ELGL Traeger List of local government influencers. This episode was hosted by Javon Davis and Alyssa...

Duration: 00:57:12

#153 Finding Your Role Model with John Keisler, Long Beach, CA

He started as a management assistant and now he's the Director of Economic and Property Development for the City of Long Beach, California, get to know John Keisler. John was also the innovation team director in Long Beach. In this episode Kent talks with John about his career path, role models and his definition of innovation.

Duration: 00:55:04

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