-By Julia Steege-Reimann-
This year, communities everywhere have faced unprecedented challenges. While those hardships can feel overwhelming, they also remind us about the things we appreciate.
As a diamond needs pressure to shine, Greatness is made, not born. Now especially, it feels fitting to celebrate all the good work that local governments do.
A modern social media holiday, City Hall Selfie Day was founded by Engaging Local Government Leaders (ELGL) in 2016. Every year, city staff, elected officials, and engaged residents worldwide show their local gov love by snapping selfies in front of their city halls.
“Through this challenging year, our local governments continue to rise to the occasion and serve their communities,” said Matt Fulton, Vice President of National Engagement for Polco.
Working with local governments nationwide to engage their residents, the team at Polco has seen many shining examples of leadership to celebrate. So for this City Hall Selfie Day, we highlight five things we appreciate most about the cities and towns we visit and live in.
“Reflecting on my City's government in the past year, two things really stand out for me. One is very emotional. Leaders held the community and cried with us and also created places and programs to support residents when we were devastated by gun violence. They have worked to honor those we lost, created spaces for grieving and plans for moving forward. The other thing that stands out is more practical. Jane Brautigam, our amazing long-time City Manager, is retiring this fall. So the City took on a search to fill this essential role. They led a thoughtful process, included community input and narrowed the candidates down to two remarkable people. Ultimately they chose one who I think will carry on a tradition of striving for better, innovating when we can and not being too lulled by the beauty of Boulder that we forget there are places we can improve.”
- Sonya Wytinck, Polco COO, Boulder, Colorado
“Everywhere in my hometown of Longmont, Colo., I see signs and stickers promoting #strongmont as a message of hope and unity among my neighbors. I appreciate that message because it's been needed during the last year. I admire the way my city has risen to the challenge of the times and persevered. Services have continued to run, business innovations brought on by the pandemic continue and spirits have remained high, all things considered.”
-Brian Smith, Polco Marketing and Communications Manager, Longmont, Colorado
“I can’t help but appreciate everything I love about the Town of Frederick, Colorado. Amazing public art by local artists. Beautiful parks and a charming downtown I can walk to. Fun and safe festivals to enjoy with my family and neighbors. My dogs love living here too!”
- Angelica Wedell, Polco Director of Marketing and Communications, Frederick, Colorado
“This past year I most appreciated the City's efforts to keep residents safe. They evaluated the evolving COVID-19 situation and responded accordingly. Sometimes this meant that events would be cancelled (like the Children's Fishing event this spring), but these are crazy times. I was really grateful that my City put our safety, rather than our entertainment, first.”
- Heather Locke, Polco Senior Account Manager, Longmont, Colorado
“I'm so glad to be able to safely visit my friends and family back home this summer. Thanks to all of the hard-working town staff and elected officials for working to keep us safe.”
- Damema Mann, Polco Director of National Engagement, Aquinnah, Massachusetts