The energy is still around us and the meeting of leadership to guide your association continues to amaze me. The 2015 Annual Convention featured a new format, a new approach to our educational classes and energized sessions throughout. The immediate feedback has been very positive from the membership.
Cities have never been more in the spotlight than they are today as the economy continues to grow from our city centers. It takes great leadership to create the environment for this growth and at every event I attend I see elected officials making difficult decisions and making the right and ethical choices for our residents.
It is not just elected officials providing leadership, though. The city clerks had their first ever joint conference at the GMA convention and it was an opportunity to see the people who run our cities everyday work hard to improve their skills and learn about the policies that impact cities and state government. The large number of city managers and city attorneys who attended the training sessions was amazing. Without their guidance each day we would not enjoy the success we are experiencing. At the convention, I watched as our leaders, regardless of the position they hold, discuss how to make their city better. They weren’t sitting around complaining; instead, they were searching for assistance and looking for opportunities. The exhibit hall, with nearly 200 companies represented, provided a great opportunity to learn about services and products that can help solve problems in our cities. It is not at all uncommon to hear of a city that was able to fix a problem based on a connection made in the exhibit hall.
I was further impressed with the current officers and the past presidents of our association and their continued commitment to making GMA stronger by encouraging members to participate in the various services offered and staying engaged in the many committees and task forces that are necessary to meet the needs of GMA.
The annual revival that gets us fired up and more determined is in itself a wonderful thing. Witnessing progress and development make the investment worthwhile.
GMA staff puts in untold hours for a successful meeting but it is all for the membership and that makes it the right thing to do. Now the challenge is keeping this momentum alive and growing. Encourage your neighboring cities to get more involved with GMA and let’s show Georgia residents how strong we can be in creating new development.