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Taking the Field: Strengthening services for all League members 

 by: Paul Meyer, NCLM Executive Director

Since I began as Executive Director, we have made a diligent effort to strengthen the quality of all League services so that they provide the maximum value for League members.

If you were at the Annual Conference, which was held in October in Greensboro and is featured at length in this publication, you saw this first hand.  We made several changes to the conference, including focusing the Tuesday Local Elected Leaders Academy trainings on personal development, enhancing the awards dinner, adding more programming to the Delegates’ Luncheon and increasing opportunities to socialize and network with colleagues.  We also worked to provide education topics throughout the conference that would enhance your ability to govern as well as your ability to manage all the duties that come with municipal functions.

We also have furthered our resolve to build relationships at the General Assembly.  At conference, we awarded the first ever North Carolina League of Municipalities General Assembly Ambassador Award.  We also presented two Community Champion awards to legislators who support municipal officials and the League to ensure that municipal interests are represented and respected in the legislative process. These recognitions go a long way toward building relationships, both with the award winners and their colleagues.  A simple “thank you” is important!

The Southern City relaunch that began with the July/August issue is another tangible example of how we have been working hard to strengthen services. The new format and editorial focus has allowed us to profile some of the great elected leaders in our state and also, hopefully, continue to bring new ideas to help each of you achieve the goals you have set for your town.

We are fortunate to have an Executive Board that is also focused on strengthening the League as an organization and the services that we offer.  To that end, the Board is working on several initiatives.  As you know, we kicked off the Strategic Visioning process at the Annual Conference.  We are working with the University of North Carolina School of Government on the visioning process, which will help us develop a preferred future vision for cities and towns in our state and determine what actions are necessary to position municipalities to achieve the vision they have designed and desire for success in the near future and beyond to 2030.  We are starting to get preliminary feedback from the conference.  I want to thank everyone who provided valued feedback toward our shared vision.  We are still in the process of engaging other stakeholders in the planning.

The Board of Directors also recently approved partnerships with two new affiliate organizations. The Military Host Cities Coalition is dedicated to leadership and advocacy for military host cities and home military bases in North Carolina. In addition, we welcomed the Storm Water Association of North Carolina several months ago to promote the efforts of municipal storm water professionals to fulfill regulatory obligations imposed on cities.  We are pleased to have both organizations working with us in promoting excellence in municipal government.

The Board has also formed two new committees.  The Leading League Insurance to 2040 Task Force will discuss the relationship between the League and the three insurance pools at length to make sure that each entity is positioned for success moving forward.  In addition, a Governance Committee was formed to examine League governance issues such as the Board of Directors election process.

As you can see, there are a number of initiatives underway. And this is just a snapshot.  As always, I want your feedback.  If you have ways that the League can help you be more productive or feedback on our services, please let me know. The League is your organization, and we are here to serve!