city planning meeting

New Office’s Task: Improve Community Engagement

City Seeking Candidates for Manager

The Raleigh City Council recently adopted the budget for Fiscal Year 2022, focusing on recovery and re-imagining our community. One of the budget’s highlights is the creation of an Office of Community Engagement

The new office will lead a process that increases the community’s capacity to improve the quality of life for people who live, work and play here. This work will include incremental and measurable projects, programs, and activities that lead to positive, long-term, systemic change. To elevate the importance of the work, the office will report to the City Manager’s Office. 

City Seeking Candidates for Manager

The City is currently seeking candidates to serve as the community engagement manager. They will have responsibility for directing the City’s community engagement efforts, which include:

  • Developing, leading, and championing a comprehensive strategic community engagement plan that builds public awareness of and engagement in City-sponsored initiatives, programs, services, and policies.
  • Identifying and implementing emerging community engagement strategies and technologies.
  • Advising and supporting City departments in their community engagement efforts.  

Original Post: May 17, 2021

We Welcome a New Office of Community Engagement to Lead Outreach Efforts

The City of Raleigh hired ML Fearn, LLC in May 2020 to study and provide recommendations to improve the community engagement process. Mr. Fearn was tasked with finding a way for community members to have multiple opportunities to engage as partners and co-creators of Raleigh’s future.

The results of the study include the creation of a new Office of Community Engagement. The new Office will be part of the FY22 budget and will have two full time staff members. Staff will partner with all Departments to enhance their community engagement efforts. The new office will be part of the City Manager’s Department. 

Recommendations from the Study

  • Key considerations for the new office include communications, equity and inclusion, innovation and creativity, continuous learning, collaboration with constituents and stakeholders, budget and funding
  • Lead the implementation of community engagement as a City-wide core organizational value as opposed to disparate, episodic, activities
  • Identify which community engagement issues are universal to all constituents, and which are unique community engagement concerns of specific communities and create responses to both
  • Design and implement continuous learning and capacity building strategies and activities for all City departments, community organizations, and consultants conducting community engagement on behalf of the City
  • Provide technical assistance to City departments, constituent groups, and other external stakeholders

“Community engagement as an organizational values lives in the heart of the organization. It is evident in all of the organization policies, transactions, decisions, and activities” ML Fearn.  Learn more about the recommendations and/or view study results.