Leadership Los Alamos Examines Local Government

LLA participants Jorge Silva-Banuelos, Margaret Trujillo, Kelly Michel and Lucy Foma discuss issues facing local government. Photo by Martha Katko
 
LLA participants Geoff Goins and Laurie Glascock have fun in their mock Council roles. Photo by Martha Katko
 
By DEBBIE HULING
LLA Board Co-Chair 

The Leadership Los Alamos Class of 2015 participated in a Local Government session in December in Council Chambers at the Municipal Building.

County Manager Harry Burgess and Deputy County Manager Brian Bosshardt chaired the session with assistance from Leadership Los Alamos Board Member Sharon Stover.

Each session begins with an opportunity for the class to practice public speaking skills facilitated by the Eastgate Toastmaster’s Group.

Burgess presented an overview of the Los Alamos County structure to include some history behind the development of the County. The class also heard about the Department of Public Utilities from Utilities Manager Tim Glasco. Senior Management Analyst Libby Carlsten talked to the class about the many opportunities to give back to the community by volunteering for a Board or Commission. County Council Vice Chair Kristen Henderson and Councilors Steven Girrens and David Izraelevitz talked about why they pursued public office, their personal goals for their time in office, advice they would give to someone considering running for Council and the top three issues facing the County. 

The class learned about Los Alamos County Courts from Honorable Magistrate Judge Pat Casados and Honorable Municipal Judge Alan S. Kirk.

A broader view of Local Government was provided by Los Alamos County Legislative Representatives who talked about their experiences and hopes for the upcoming Legislative session. The class heard from Sen. Richard Martinez, Sen. Carlos Cisneros, Rep. Stephanie Garcia-Richard, Rep. Nick Salazar and Rep. Carl Trujillo.

In the afternoon, the class got to put some of their learnings into action by participating in a Mock County Council Meeting facilitated by Brian Bosshardt. Bosshardt provided an overview of how a Council meeting is conducted including protocol for both Councilors and people addressing the Council.

Class members chose roles including Councilor, public official such as fire and police chief, or resident. Each role was given a background bio and a unique passion for the community. The challenge was to allocate a $2 million budget surplus in the next fiscal year. Class members overwhelmingly gave this portion of the session high marks on their evaluation and said it really helped them understand the role, challenges and sacrifices associated with Local Government.

For more information about Leadership Los Alamos, click here.

Rep. Stephanie Garcia Richard talks with LLA participant Beth Honea during a break. Photo by Martha Katko

LLA participant Jordan Garcia in his mock role as County Coucil Chair. Photo by Martha Katko

LLA participant Doris Prokop addresses the Council during a mock Council meeting. Photo by Martha Katko

LLA participant Jorge Silva-Banuelos addresses the Council during a mock Council meeting. Photo by Martha Katko

Laurie Glascock of Eastgate Toastmasters talks about duck carving during the Toastmasters portion of the session. Photo by Martha Katko

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