I wanted to share with the membership some thoughts and impressions from the
94th Annual ICMA Conference in Richmond where over 3,200 local government
professionals gathered to celebrate 100 years of city management. Yes, Stanton,
Virginia piloted the idea before there was an Association.
One theme was promoting the profession for the next generations. We were
fortunate to have four of our Andrews Scholars in attendance as a visible reminder
of our Association's commitment. They joined us for our Association night out on
Monday and we all shared a great evening of discussion about the profession, our
communities and our challenges. The Alliance staff and League Director also attended
again emphasizing the importance of partnerships and relationships to our future.
I continue to take a great deal of pride in the commitment this organization has made
to support new professionals, whether the Andrews Scholarship, Esser Scholarships,
discounted memberships, training opportunities, or attendance at conferences for Associate
members. On the continuing education program, the Harvard Scholarship continues to
develop practicing professionals. All are great examples for others to follow.
The keynotes were interesting and thought provoking, but one of the Association's
chief themes is the continuing and changing responsibilities we have under the ICMA
Code of Ethics.
As members of ACMA we have all subscribed to and agree to practice the principals stated
in the Code in terms of the "do's and don'ts." ICMA is weighing in heavily with our
obligation as professional managers to implement and practice Tenet 5 which creates an
obligation for us to provide complete policy research and advice to the issue of
sustainability both environmentally and economically. This is a different dimension than
I had considered for the Code - but it only makes sense that as professionals we take the
longer term view and regard the total impact of our decisions on the community.
Finally, it doesn't seem possible that hosting the ICMA Conference October 7-10, 2012 is
around the corner - my thanks to Cynthia Seelhammer for agreeing to coordinate this
tremendous effort. It will require a hefty commitment from all our members and our
organizations to be hosts, so start planning on helping out. We have set aside funds
each year in our budget to transfer to the Host Committee Budget to meet the financial
obligation, but it was clear from Richmond that volunteers and assistance from our
communities will be required.
It doesn't seem as though I have been a part of the profession for 30 years. The
activity levels, the challenges, rewards and opportunities we face as public servants
and management professionals on a daily basis certainly make it rewarding.