4/23/15 Update: Thank you to everyone who reached out to us in order to nominate more great city managers. We’ve added 10 more city managers to follow, and included three additional individuals to follow from local and city government. You can find that article here.
City managers take on a daunting task of overseeing the administrative side of local operations, like implementing policy and supervising governmental activities. When one is tasked with overseeing budgets, community programs, and various city-wide policies, developing a strong relationship with the citizens is important. Social media has recently become a great outlet for city managers. Not only does it promote government transparency, but it also supports city-wide camaraderie.
If you are a city manager or local government official looking to grow your social network and connect with your constituency, follow these eight individuals (organized alphabetically by last name) and take note of their Twitter habits––we’re willing to bet you’ll pick up many helpful ideas along the way!
The Top 8 City Managers On Twitter
1. Patrick S. Banger
Gilbert, Arizona was named the “22nd best city to live in” in 2014 by Money Magazine. It is recognized as a safe, sunny, rapidly-growing community––there were roughly 5,000 residents in 1980 and over 200,000 today. Town Manager Patrick Banger posts regularly about local city happenings, sends out reminders of Gilbert events, and occasionally tweets about his family or local restaurants. These personal touches make his account interesting and relatable to the community.
— Gilbert Town Manager (@Gilbert_Manager) March 13, 2015
2. Ron Carlee
Ron Carlee manages the largest city in North Carolina––Charlotte. His Twitter account hosts a balance of business and personal opinion tweets. Many are humorous, like the horoscope tweet and comment shown below. He frequently retweets information from local news groups and companies in an effort to keep Charlotteans in the know.
Everyone has budget advice. pic.twitter.com/r2P3uBlF59
— Ron Carlee (@roncarlee) March 21, 2015
3. Lee Feldman
Referred to as the “Venice of America” (due to the expansive canal system), Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, is home to over 170,000 people. From ribbon cuttings, to parades, to art murals, City Manager Lee Feldman actively tweets about local happenings. He works to keep citizens informed and inspired, retweeting about weather emergencies, local hula hoop contests, and relevant or motivating quotes. Learn more about how Ft. Lauderdale implemented a new strategy management program here.
#TLG2015 failure is necessary for meaningful innovation.
— Lee Feldman (@leefeldman) April 14, 2015
4. Jeff Fleming
Kingsport is a small city––home to roughly 50,000 people––in northeast Tennessee. The majority of city manager Fleming’s tweets are links to the Kingsport blog, where Fleming writes about local government, tourism, relocation, and more. Blogging (and tweeting about your latest articles) is a great way to boost social interaction for your city.
Kingsport Blog: Healthy Kingsport – Join the Movement! http://t.co/7pSkwukH17
— Jeff Fleming (@KingsportBlog) April 6, 2015
5. Bob Halpin
Just 20 miles outside of Boston is Framingham, Massachusetts. City manager Bob Halpin’s Twitter account offers a balanced mix of local government events, news, and city-wide updates. Whether it’s a retweet from the Framingham police department, or a traffic update, this account demonstrates a harmonious balance of tweets and retweets.
Framingham’s Katherine Grindeland Participated in Alternative Spring Break Program | Framingham, MA Patch http://t.co/fNxXVoSvlf
— Framingham Town Mgr. (@FramTownManager) April 6, 2015
6. Grant A. Kleinhenz
In 2009, Money Magazine named the small (and growing) town of Brownsburg as the number one place to live in Indiana. Its current town manager, Grant Kleinhenz, sends out dozens of well-researched personal tweets, ranging from road work updates, to new construction projects, to even city water usage data. If you’re looking for a way to make your followers aware of and connected to community happenings, follow Kleinhenz.
Using 2016 expense estimates w/revenue growth, General Fund Reserve to grow 0.25% to $4,549,685 which gives us a 6 month operating balance!
— Grant A. Kleinhenz (@BrownsburgTM) April 14, 2015
7. Troy Schulte
The largest city in Missouri (with the largest number of followers on our list) is Kansas City, home to nearly half a million residents. City manager Troy Schulte not only tweets about city affairs and retweets local Kansas City accounts, but he also takes the time to respond to people who tweet directly to him. This is a great habit for all city managers to take note of; followers are far more likely to interact with you over social media if they know that their attempts will be noticed.
Austin’s new rules are our new rules. Ride on, Austin: Uber, Lyft and other TNCs are now legal – CultureMap Austin http://t.co/cBP23hD47q
— KC City Manager (@KCMOManager) April 11, 2015
8. Jamie Verbrugge
Bloomington, Minnesota is home to the famous Mall of America, the largest shopping mall in the U.S. (The mall is so big, you could fit 7 Yankee stadiums in it!) City manager Jamie Verbrugge frequently tweets out bits of information from government conferences and meetings he attends––like from the National League of Cities Congressional City Conference in March. This promotes openness and transparency, which is a good habit to have.
Kindergarteners entering school able to shoot, edit and upload a video before they are able to read. Think that changes things? #TLG2014
— j_verb (@j_verb) April 23, 2014
City Managers, Is Your Twitter Account Stellar?
We know that we’ve only highlighted a few of the great city manager accounts on Twitter, and are sure that there are many others doing a great job. Tweet us @clearpointstrat if you have (or a city manager you know has) an active social media presence––and you may end up in our next article!