Guest: Matt Madlock, Entrepreneur, Activist
That genius at the Apple store may be the one to help solve intractable problems in your community. That is the trajectory our next-generation guest is on in Nashville, TN. Matt Madlock started fixing smartphones and other consumer electronics while in high school, a business that he ran and grew through college. He graduated Magna Cum Laude earlier this year with a dual degree in Marketing and Business Analytics. In addition to the job with Apple, he is a business consultant at The Small Business Development Center at Tennessee State University. It all belies a backstory for a young man who was born on a sidewalk in San Diego, adopted, placed in foster care and moved 20 times before entering college. The budding entrepreneur is a technology enthusiast and education advocate who is committed to community and political activism on behalf of disadvantaged youth to help them get access to the resources they need to succeed.
Guest: Kristen Cox, Executive Director, Governor’s Office of Management and Budget, State of Utah
Start-ups learn to let limitations guide them to creative solutions and recognize there is never enough to go around – time, money or talent. Instead of trying to remove them, the good ones embrace constraints and use them to your advantage. When you talk about fiscal affairs in the state of Utah, the story is the same one. In a state known for its prudent financial management, Utah OMB Executive Director Kristen Cox and her keep-it-simple approach to government have made a lasting impact. She’s schooled dozens of agency leaders in the Theory of Constraints management method, which is designed to root out bottlenecks in agency operations. On the revenue side, Kristen also learned from the 2008 fiscal crisis, adapting scenarios from the Federal Reserve’s stress testing of banks to the state’s own budget.
“The ability in this country to have progress is infinite, but we have challenges to get there.” That’s according to Kevyn Orr, who rose to prominence during his tenure as emergency manager for the City of Detroit, MI and advisor to Chrysler through its bankruptcy and the subsequent renewal of its “reputation as a bold and innovative automaker.” These and other experiences shaped his view of strategic planning, innovation, cultural transition and developing a new generation of leadership in government. He has also witnessed social progress during his own lifetime. Now a partner-in-charge of the Washington, DC office of Jones Day, Kevyn challenges civil servants to use candor, logic and courage in confronting racism and other social inequities.
Guest: The Honorable Greg Fischer, Mayor, City of Louisville, KY
Compassion. A decade ago, the word did not appear in cities’ strategic plans. That’s changing. Thanks to the pioneering work of Louisville, KY, compassion is becoming something of a civic, secular religion in a growing number of cities. In Louisville, compassion has become synonymous with a civic culture that values lifelong learning, the physical and mental health of city residents and is invested in nurturing a culture where residents are cared for and given a sense of hope. Our guest is the city’s 50th mayor and is the architect of the compassion agenda. He also had a hand in promoting the city’s unique form of hospitality – “Bourbonism” – but that is probably a conversation better had at the bar.
An off year election creates the opportunity to take stock of the state of our civics. Election day coincides with the release of new analysis on voter turnout in local elections. Portland State University's Who Votes For Mayor? project details a disturbing downward trend across the 30 largest cities in the United States.
"Democracy is in more danger now than at any time in my lifetime for a very simple reason," says Phil Keilsing, director of the PSU Center of Public Service, "it is because so many people are exiting the arena."
Enter a pair of civic startups, each focused at opposite ends of the balloting process. Ballot Readyprovides a single, independent, online source of candidate information down to the voting track level.
If Ballot Ready is voter facing, another startup is candidate facing. As its name suggest, RunForOffice.org allows prospective candiates to find out opportunities to run among 116,242 elected offices simply entering their street address.
The ABCs of NASCIO 2017 - analytics, blockchain, and cybersecurity - dominated the conversation against a backdrop of change and speculation. Is there enough momentum for state CIOs to finish strong before the next election cycle and what does it mean that the National Governors Association (NGA) is taking a direct hand in analyzing the future of technology in state government.
On the season premiere of Not Safe For Government, we have a full retrospective on NASCIO 2017 - the technologies, the prospects, the problems and the politics. Hosts Dustin Haisler and Paul Taylor are joined by Government Technology editors Noelle Knell and Lauren Harrison along with Research VP "Joe Knows" Morris and Teri Takai, Director of the Center for Digital Government, who has a long history with NASCIO and a keen sense of the mood in the public sector IT community.
In a keynote address to Governing’s Government Performance and Innovation Summit, Kevyn Orr - the onetime emergency manager in Detroit, MI - cautioned that the covenant that we have made to provide services is being challenged. Cities must look at the issues coming over the hill. Orr also praised a recent speech by New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu on race, segregation and the removal of confederate monuments.
Odelia Bergh from the Peachtree City Police Department (@PTCfirepolice) says sarcasm is helpful in connecting with an audience (and making a point) on social media. Her team uses it a lot and, perhaps not coincidently, team members have each other’s backs if things go wrong. As for humor, Bergh tells Paul they have a hard and fast rule: “Never post while still laughing. Ever.”
Chelsea Stevens from Georgia Interactive (@GeorgiaGovTeam) told Dustin about the state’s efforts to refine its voice — “informative, fun, and friendly” when engaging the public on social media while keeping it all business for internal audiences.
Angela Thompson described for Anil a five year serial journey through the City of Milton (@cityofmiltonga) to the City of Canton (@CityofCantonGA) that included internal resistance to social media and refashioning the two cities’ messaging.
In a preview of the next three episodes of NSFG, we learn the bottom line in using humor in social media, get pointers on mutual aid among members within your social media team, an advance look at a special episode about “The Town without Uber,” the microwave as surveillance device, and the triumphant return of Boaty McBoatface.
The Governing crew compares notes on the Mayor's Summit at SXSW one last time as they make its way to the airport. We hear from a couple of mayors en route. And David reminds us that, when emergency hits at home, a mayor is duty bound to leave the fun of SXSW and return home.
The rise of Ridealong and becoming your own Mark Cuban. Mayors, with a little help from AOL co-founder Steve Case, played Shark to a group of GovTech Startups during their final official day at SXSW - but remained in the long shadow of Mark Cuban.
Our coverage of the Civic I/O Mayors Summit at SXSW continues with a hard day's conversations about how cities are coming terms with race and immigration. Plus the Governing crew have a few thoughts about all that took place around the policy discussion.
In this second NSFG Extra from the Civic I/O mayors summit at SXSW, J.B. Wogan speaks with long serving US Conference of Mayors Executive Director Tom Cochran, who sketches out a through line from civic innovation to civil rights and back. The governing crew - J.B., David Kidd, and Dustin Haisler - also take to the patio to compare notes on what we learned during day one of the mayor's summit.
Two early arriving mayors, Louisville's Greg Fischer and Christopher Cabaldon of West Sacramento talk about their expectations of the annual technology, music and policy festival in Austin. Fischer wants to talk with the 23 mayors gathered for the Civic I/O Summit at SXSW about the challenges faced by blue cities in red starts during the Trump era. For his part, Cabaldon thinks that public engagement as currently practiced by cities is doing more harm than good.
Recorded before a live audience at Laserfiche's Empower 2017 in Long Beach, CA, NSFG cohost Dustin Haisler talks with leading innovators from state and local government on how process improvements are leading to new ways to deliver service and help the community. Major themes from this episode:
• How to undertake civic innovation with limited resources
• What is on the horizon for new government service models
• Success stories and lessons learned in innovating citizen-centric processes
Bryan Sastokas – CIO and Head of Innovation, Long Beach, California
Tim Nolan, Senior Applications Manager, Collin County, Texas
Ed Yonker, Application Software Manager, County of Franklin, Pennsylvania
The never before posted piloted episode featuring Opportunity Space, a GovTech startup that sought to become the Zillow of government-owned property. Originally produced in August 2015.
The GovTech Social podcast is becoming NSFG - a podcast about applied innovation in state and local government. The name is a play on the warnings you see about content on the Internet being not safe for work - or NSFW. To be clear, NSFG is cubicle-friendly and job critical - there is no sonic nudity to worry about.
But the name was deliberate on our part because we want to have a conversation about where government is going and how it is going to get there. We have been thinking and talking to really smart people about exponential technologies, government’s relationship to data (both open and big) and the citizens’ experience with government. More to the point, the citizens’ experience with you.
Social media is certainly part of the mix. You and this community of govies are, after all, who brought us to the dance. We are in your debt - and look forward to having you with us on this ride into government’s future.
On this episode, completing a swapcast with ELGL founders Kirsten and Kent Wyatt, a check-in with Kristy Dalton on #GSMCON2017 and details on the Atlanta GovTech Social Unconference.
Kansas City Communications Manager Chris Hernandez guests, and a discussion of government social media in the age of alternative facts.
Making news by making history - and preserving a slice of a presidential
The Twitter handle @POTUS is getting freed up for the next White House accupant and the
incumbent becomes @POTUS44 on Twitter. On January 5, the White House stood up a digital
archive containing a quarter million digital records from the Obama years. That's a
As a companion to Eyragon Eidam's story, New Archive Offers 'Unprecedented Access' to Obama's Social Media Presence, he talks with Anil Chawla about the how it all came together.