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November 2021


A Message From ILG’s CEO & Executive Director

Greetings from ILG!

The past year has been incredibly difficult for the local government sector. The length of the pandemic coupled with the ongoing challenges of municipal leadership have stretched local government agencies like never before. 

The team at ILG has witnessed the unyielding commitment of so many local government leaders and public servants firsthand and we want to express our gratitude to each of you for being a pillar of strength during this unprecedented time. You’ve worked tirelessly to provide exceptional service to your communities, help overcome obstacles and achieve new milestones. It is truly our privilege to work hand-in-hand with you.

We see the incredible work that you do. We know how important it is. We thank you for your servant leadership.

In addition to our steadfast mission, ILG is blessed to have three incredible statewide affiliates and dozens of other partners supporting our work, from state agencies to community-based organizations to private companies and philanthropic entities. In this newsletter issue, we’ll recognize some of those important collaborations.

We are incredibly grateful for the opportunity to work with cities, counties and special districts to tackle challenges head on, forge ahead, pivot when necessary, innovate and make meaningful change.

With gratitude,

Erica L. Manuel
CEO & Executive Director

Board Member Spotlight: Mark S. Gaughan
Principal, Genesee Group

What are you most thankful for during your time in and around public service? My public service has been somewhat unique. I have never held an elected position, but I have volunteered for leadership positions in 20+ non-profit organizations that provide a vast array of services. With each organization and volunteer opportunity, I believe I have been successful in offering an unbiased, non-partisan, agenda-free perspective that helped each organization achieve greater success. I am very thankful for the many things I learned from these organizations. I have learned something about mental health issues, small and large business concerns, taxpayer issues, environmental issues, politics and more. I am also thankful for the many great people who I have met while serving the non-profit world.

Read More About Mark


ILG is led by a 21-member board of directors that is committed to our core values of collaboration, service, commitment, equity, inclusion and trust. These leaders are staunch advocates for the public sector and are an excellent example of good governance at the local level.

Special Thanks to our 2021 Board Members:

  • Chair: Rod Gould, Former City Manager, Santa Monica
  • Vice Chair: Teresa Acosta, Councilmember, Carlsbad
  • Immediate Past Chair: Michele Beal Bagneris, City Attorney/City Prosecutor, Pasadena
  • Treasurer: Neil McCormick, Chief Executive Officer, California Special Districts Association
  • Virginia Bass, Supervisor, Humboldt County
  • Stanley Caldwell, Board Member, Mt. View Sanitary District
  • Brett Channing, Deputy City Manager, Lake Forest
  • Carolyn Coleman, Executive Director, League of California Cities
  • Monica Davis, Community Services Manager, Hayward (MMANC Representative)
  • Mark S. Gaughan, Principal, Genesee Group
  • Randi Johl, Legislative Director & City Clerk, Temecula 
  • James Keene, Retired City Manager, Palo Alto
  • Paolo Kespradit, Management Analyst, West Hollywood (MMASC Representative)
  • Dallin Kimble, County Administrator, Mariposa County (CACE Representative)
  • Graham Knaus, Executive Director, California State Association of Counties
  • Pat Martel, Retired City Manager, Daly City (Cal-ICMA Representative)
  • Richard Montgomery, Councilmember, Manhattan Beach
  • Sue Novasel, Supervisor, El Dorado County
  • Nat Rojanasathira, Deputy City Manager, Monterey
  • Lydia Romero, City Manager, Lemon Grove
  • Hilary Straus, General Manager, Citrus Heights Water District


Level Up Your Leadership 
Master your role as an effective elected official & community leader
NEW Leadership Training!

Virtual Training via Zoom
Monday, December 6 & Monday, December 13, 2021
5:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Two Evenings!

Do you want to be on an exceptional and effective council or board?

Being an elected official in local government is not an easy task. We’re immensely grateful for all the local government public servants who have stepped up to lead in their communities. We also recognize the unique challenges that come with that role. In order to navigate the shifting landscape of local government leadership, elected officials must be equipped to lead through changing, and often challenging, times. If you want to learn how to level up your leadership and master the challenging art of being an effective public servant, register for ILG’s new interactive, virtual leadership training. In this training, you’ll learn tools and strategies to help you govern more effectively and better engage with fellow electeds, agency staff and the community.

ILG’s training will help you master the art of public service by equipping you with practical governance tools for exceptional leadership and governance.

This comprehensive training is open to — and specially designed for — elected leaders from California cities, counties and special districts.

In addition to ILG trainers, we’re also grateful to have expert guidance and insight from two experienced local agency leaders, Sue Novasel and Hilary Straus. 

About Supervisor Sue Novasel
Sue Novasel was elected to the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors in November 2014 and is currently serving her second term in that office. She also serves on various boards and commissions including the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, California Tahoe Conservancy, Tahoe Transportation District, First Five of El Dorado County, the South Lake Tahoe Basin Waste JPA and the South Tahoe Recreation JPA. Sue was recently honored by becoming the State Assembly District 5’s Woman of the Year. Read More About Sue.

About Hilary Straus
Hilary Straus has worked for nearly 25 years in local government administration and currently serves as General Manager for the Citrus Heights Water District. During his time in the public sector, Hilary served as a City Administrator and City Manager in two cities in California. Hilary also has the unique experience of having worked with a team over a ten year period to transition the newly-incorporated/start-up City of Citrus Heights into a productive and cost effective municipal service provider. Read More About Hilary.

Cost: Just $400 per person.


  • Understand key attributes of high-performing councils and boards
  • Gain practical tools to govern more effectively
  • Learn strategies and techniques to help your agency develop an exceptional council or board
  • Gather effective techniques for public meetings
  • Learn strategies to promote civility and respond to diverse viewpoints
  • Understand various roles and responsibilities of the governing body, your agency’s administrator and staff
  • Explore community engagement strategies and collaborative decision-making processes
  • Share real-world experiences with other elected officials
  • Learn good governance tools and review examples of exceptional leadership
  • Join a cohort of local leaders for peer-to-peer networking and mutual support

Register Here

Achieving Meaningful and Equitable Community Engagement Outcomes in a Hybrid Environment
Thursday, December 9, 2021
11:00 a.m – 12:30 p.m.

In the wake of the COVID pandemic, local governments throughout California have pivoted to online and hybrid public engagement approaches to address issues ranging from housing and budgeting to climate change and public safety. While many witnessed increased participation, the central question remains – how can public engagement help your agency build trust and develop equitable and sustainable public participation that meets your agency’s strategic goals in a hybrid or digital environment?

Join ILG for an interactive webinar about strategic and outcome-driven public participation processes that lead to better engagement results. We’re thankful for insights from three local government leaders about their engagement journeys.


  • Linh Hoang, Communications Manager, Santa Clara Valley Water District
  • Sandra Moberly, Community and Economic Development Director, Town of Mammoth Lakes
  • Jillian Nameth Zeiger, Senior Planner, Marin County

Moderated by Hanna Stelmakhovych, Program Manager, Institute for Local Government

Register Here

This webinar is hosted by ILG in partnership with Bang the Table. 

Thanks for Making our Past Webinars a Success! 

ILG has hosted more than 20 webinars this year reaching more than 10,000 registrants! Thank you for making our webinars such a resounding success. If you missed any, consider downloading one of our recent sessions on topics of equity, housing, immigration, planning and more. The webinar recordings, presentations and additional resources are available on our website and below.

Access All ILG Webinar Recordings Here


ILG is excited to partner with the California Strategic Growth Council on an expansion of our successful BOOST program. SGC and ILG recently announced the next round of BOOST, a state-wide program tailored to help California cities and towns advance their climate action, resilience and equity objectives. The program will be administered through a unique partnership between ILG, SGC, Climate Resolve, California Coalition for Rural Housing and Farallon Strategies.

Through BOOST, we’ll be partnering with seven cities and towns to provide tailored support with advancing climate action. We’re excited to work with Barstow, La Puente, Maywood, McFarland, Needles, Rialto and South San Francisco on this innovative effort.


ILG is proud to be the non-profit training and education affiliate of three statewide associations, representing more than 2,500 local agencies in California. This unique relationship allows us to keep a pulse on the needs, challenges and opportunities facing local governments statewide. We’re grateful for our partnership and excited for the year ahead supporting cities, counties and special districts. 


Our corporate partners provide year-round support and thought leadership on a wide variety of issues affecting local government leaders. Thank you for helping advance good government at the local level!

Insert List of Partners

Interested in partnering with us? The ILG Partner Program provides a great opportunity to demonstrate your organization’s commitment to good governance at the local level and to connect with and engage local agency decision-makers.

Partner with ILG Today


WEBINAR: Annual Labor & Employment Update

From independent contractors to privacy to COVID-19-related legislation, the California State Legislature and federal government were busy in 2021 passing a wealth of new labor and employment laws that impact your business or agency. Best Best & Krieger Labor & Employment attorneys will provide important guidance on new laws and cases from 2021. Register here.​

ARTICLE: Brief Primer for New & Amended COVID-19 Employment Laws

California has recently enacted or amended COVID-19 employment laws. Some of the laws have broad applicability. For example, Assembly Bill (AB) 1577 amends California’s tax treatment of various loans related to the COVD-19 pandemic. Other laws are rather narrow. Read more.​

ARTICLE: What is Really Behind the Supply Chain Crisis?

Pandemic-induced labor shortages, increased cargo ship capacity, infrastructure and a shift in consumer shopping habits all play a role in the current supply chain crisis. Read more.

ARTICLE: Facebook’s New Pages Experience 101

With a new year comes a new look for Facebook Pages. In January 2022 (though this date is subject to change), Facebook will require that all Pages are converted to “the New Pages Experience.” Read more.

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