September 2022

TCMA Management Messenger

Awards and Scholarships
Management Transitions
New Members
New Member Applications
Meet Your Colleagues
Happy 99th Birthday!
Boom Town
Ethics Corner 
Did You Know?
TCMA to Host Booth at the TML Annual Conference
2022 ICMA Annual Conference Scholarships and Texas Reception
TCMA Educational Events
Memos on Meetings

AWARDS and Scholarships

TCMA Awards Scholarships_banner

Professional Awards and Scholarships

Each year, TCMA provides opportunities to recognize colleagues for their outstanding service to the city management profession, honor an outstanding city council for significant contributions to local government in Texas, and recognize an academician who has made significant contributions to the formal education of students pursuing careers in local government. The deadline for submission is January 6, 2023.


  • Administrator of the Year Award
  • Lifetime Achievement Award
  • Mentoring Award in Memory of Gary Gwyn
  • Excellence in Ethics and Integrity Award 
  • Assistant of the Year Award in Memory of Valerie Bradley
  • Terrell Blodgett Academician Award
  • City Council of the Year Award

For information and applications, click here

TCMA also provides opportunities for professional development through scholarships. Unless otherwise noted, the deadline for submission is January 6, 2023.  

  • Barney L. Knight Texas CPM Scholarship
  • Clarence E. Ridley Scholarship
  • Leadership Development Scholarship
  • Tom Muehlenbeck Scholarship (Deadline April 7, 2023) 

For information and applications, click here

If you have questions about any of these programs, please contact Kim Pendergraft at or 512-231-7400.

Management transitions

Kris Abbott is the interim city manager of the City of Eagle Lake.

George Antuna is no longer the city manager of the City of Eagle Pass. Ivan Morua is the interim city manager. 

David Cockrell retired as city manager of the City of Atlanta. Danica Porter is the new city manager. 

William Cox is the new city administrator of the City of Bandera. 

Tully Davidson is no longer the city manager of the City of Grand Saline. Dana Clair is the new city manager.

Eric Debus is serving as the interim city manager of the City of Rhome.

David Harris is no longer the city administrator of the City of Balcones Heights.

Jerry Hendrix is serving as the acting city manager of the City of Kyle.

David Henley is no longer the city manager of the City of Grandview. Don Moore is the new city manager.

Hamid Khaleghipour is the interim city manager of the Town of Addison.

Melissa Landin is no longer the city manager of the City of Eagle Lake.  

Frank Menefee is the interim city manager of the City of La Grange, effective September 16.

Cynthia Northrop is the new city manager of the City of Brechenridge. 

Julie Oakley will no longer be the city manager of the City of Lakeway. Joseph Molis is the interim city manager, effective September 2. 

Paul Virgadamo is no longer the city administrator of the City of Conroe. Gary Scott is the interim city administrator. 

Kenneth Williams is the new city manager of the City of Beaumont, effective September 6. 

Carlos Yerena is the city manager of the City of Donna.

Larry Zermeno is the new city administrator of the City of Yorktown

New Members

The TCMA Management Messenger welcomes the following new members approved by the Executive Committee on August 25, 2022.

Full: Paul Brandenburg, City Administrator, Liberty Hill; Konrad Hildebrandt, City Administrator, McLendon-Chisholm; Matt Lingafelter, Assistant City Administrator, Sunset Valley; Lety Yanez, Assistant City Manager, Wylie; William Zermeno, Deputy City Administrator, Yorktown

Associate: Carter Estes, Assistant to the City Manager, Amarillo; Juan Pablo Villarreal, Director of Internal Services, Brownsville; Elizabeth Suarez, Director of Aviation, McAllen

Student: Charla Griffin, Tarleton State University; Nick Domovich, University of North Texas; Sean Moothart and Chance Wood, The University of Texas at Austin

New Member Applications

The current TCMA Board policy requires that names of new member applicants be published each month in the Management Messenger. Any written objection during the subsequent 30-day period will be reviewed by the Membership Committee. If no objections are received during this time, the names will be submitted to the Executive Committee for approval. Written objections can be mailed to TCMA, Attention: Membership Committee, 1821 Rutherford Lane, Suite 400, Austin, TX 78754. Applications received in the month of August:

Full: Dana Clair, City Administrator, Grand Saline; Phillip Laney, Assistant City Manager, Alamo Heights; Stacey Norris, City Manager, Dalhart

Associate: Christina Flores, Director of Human Resources, McAllen; Isaac Tawil, City Attorney, McAllen; Harrison Willeford, HR Coordinator, Northlake; Ruby Mowles, City Secretary, Ingleside

meet your colleagues

The TCMA Management Messenger introduces and welcomes Brian Barboza to his new position as the city administrator for the City of Knox City. Brian’s appointment began on July 5. He previously served two years as the Silverton city administrator and five years in the Hereford street and water departments. 

Brian received his associate’s degree in criminal justice from Amarillo College and his bachelor’s degree from West Texas A&M University. He also became a certified public manager through Texas Tech University. 

Brian’s hobbies include hiking and spending time with family and friends. 

The TCMA Management Messenger introduces and welcomes Konrad Hildebrandt. Konrad began his position as city manager of the City of McLendon-Chisholm on July 12. He has served in local government management for 34 years. His career includes 16 years as city manager in the state of Utah for the cities of Washington Terrace, Cedar Hills, and Riverton, and four years as assistant city manager in the City of Odessa, Texas. Other cities he has served include Scottsdale, Arizona and Orem, Utah.

Konrad has a bachelor of science in business management and a master of public administration from BYU Marriott School of Management. He is an ICMA credentialed manager.

Konrad has been married to his beautiful wife for 36 years. They have five handsome and beautiful children and one 91 year old great grandma. He loves to participate and watch sports, temari, and family activities.

happy 99th birthday!


The TCMA Management Messenger celebrates and honors TCMA Distinguished member Terrell Blodgett for turning 99 years young on September 15. 

Terrell has spent a lifetime in public service and to TCMA and the city management profession. He has been an encouragement and mentor to many. Listen to Terrell share life experiences on the TCMA podcast titled “Sage Insights from Terrell Blodgett”  or watch his TCMA “Legacy Leader” interview here.

Happy 99!


The City of Breckenridge became the county seat in 1876 and has come a long way from its cisterns and cesspool beginnings. The Chaney No.1 forever changed Breckenridge when oil wells brought in 3,700 barrels per day. In one year, there were 200 oil wells in the city limits and five years later there were 2,000 wells in close proximity. 

Breckenridge had an estimated population of 800 to 1,000 residents that soon swelled to 30,000. Within five years, it was the eleventh largest city in Texas and its population was mostly men. By the 1940s, the population declined to 8,000 and slowly dropped to its current population of 5,200. The City still has the foot print of a larger town, and even with its decline in population, its maintenance remains the same.

In 1921, the Walker-Caldwell Water Company replaced a small system by damming up the Clear Fork of the Brazos and building a pump station on it. Then they installed a 10-mile cast iron raw water line to a new settling pond and a one million gallon per day sand filter plant was built on the north end of town. The filter plant pumped to a new elevated tank and to a new 12-mile distribution system including fire hydrants. From 1921 to1923, the sewer treatment plant and collection system was built and in 1923 the City finished $600,000 worth of paving and storm drainage. Just imagine a new town rising out of the dust. 

One hundred years later, a large part of the original water distribution and wastewater collection system is still in operation, including the original 14-inch discharge piping from the pump station that was built in the early 1920s, which is showing its age. This has caused poor street conditions because of repairs to the aged distribution and collection system. In the newer areas of town, lines were installed 50 to 60 years ago.  The challenge now is planning and financing all the needed projects from the 1920s and planning for the installations from the 1960s and 1970s. 

The challenges with a lot of small towns is the age of their systems and the need to replace the old pipes and streets. Receiving grant money at zero percent interest and low interest loans is essential to managing debt from infrastructure replacement. The most important part are rates. Do they allow for the debt payment and maintenance and operation? Are they sufficient for paying cash for the needed smaller improvements and more importantly retaining a trained staff and equipment replacement? 

One progressive way to get the smaller projects complete is to do them in house. Invest in a well-trained staff and equipment to replace pipes the old fashioned way. Well-trained staff can save money and get more accomplished. City government is a nonprofit with a business side that has to operate as such. City government has to invest in itself. If we set goals and achieve them the same as a private company, the public enterprise can get more accomplished especially with the rising cost of materials. One advantage is to depreciate equipment over a longer period of time and being a nonprofit entity. 

Change is a big but necessary step for small public enterprise to succeed. We have to make this move to better serve our customers and be good stewards of the public’s money. Money in a small town is hard to come by and what we have to decide is if the juice is worth the squeeze. 

(Article submitted by Houston Satterwhite III, Assistant City Manager of Operations, Breckenridge)

ethics Corner

It gives me great pride when our team members participate in professional development programs or seek to find opportunities to grow in their careers. One of the emerging leaders in our organization was recently accepted into the 2023 Texas Women's Leadership Institute. We have several members of our team who have completed or are near completion of the Texas Certified Public Manager program. And we have others who graduated from various programs through ICMA or other professional associations.

The community I serve is in a rapidly growing region of Texas, and we deal with constant change in a fast-paced environment. Therefore, to provide for long-term sustainability after the buildout, we work very hard to maintain a lean organization with staffing levels on the lower side of the average per capita.

Also, like many other organizations, we are constantly competing for talent and dealing with the challenges of maintaining complete staffing levels amid intense competition from the private sector and surrounding communities.

Committing to our team members' growth through professional development isn't always easy.

The challenges of a fast-paced environment, lean staffing levels, and fear of turnover are amplified when members of the team are out of the office for training events or participating in programs that put them in a position where they may be recruited by other organizations or leave the organization to advance their career.

Despite these challenges, we prioritize our team members' professional development and growth.

While I believe that this is an essential part of a strong organization's culture, it is also an ethical thing to do. Tenet 8 of the TCMA Code of Ethics states, "Make it a duty continually to improve the member's professional ability and to develop the competence of associates in the use of management techniques."

While the Tenet uses the term "member" and the guidelines for Tenet 8 speak to self-assessments and the member's professional development expectations (including the two hours of ethics training every two years to maintain TCMA membership), I believe the second part of the Tenet that states "and to develop the competence of associates in the use of management techniques" is what gives us the direction to support the growth of others and to invest in their professional development.

I also believe that while members are subject to the TCMA Code of Ethics, we must lead organizations and departments that reflect the Code of Ethics. Undoubtedly, growth and development are priorities expressed by our code.

While it may not always be easy, commitment to the growth of others is not only a good practice but also an ethical obligation. In addition, having highly competent individuals serving in local government helps our organizations and our profession as a whole.

Even in those instances where someone may take the new skills they have learned and serve another organization, I believe that Henry Ford's words ring true when he states, "The only thing worse than training your employees and having them leave is not training them and having them stay."

(Article submitted by Matt Mueller, Ethics Committee Chair and Town Manager, Little Elm)

did you know...?

TCMA_Mental Wellness_email 800x220

Just like caring for our physical health, mental wellness is critical to overall health. The challenges of our profession can be draining, weigh heavy, and take a toll on mental health including added stress on families. TCMA and Deer Oaks Employee Assistance Program have partnered to provide services for our membership to care for their overall mental wellness. For more information click here. < >  Also attend the webinar series Maximizing Mental Wellbeing in the Workplace. To register, click here. To view archived webinars, click here

TCMA_Financial Planning_banner

TCMA members have access to personalized employment agreement and financial planning assistance through its partnership with the Trusted Capital Group (TCG). TCG is an independent financial services firm that specializes in consulting and retirement planning services for cities, school districts, and other government entities. For more information click here.

tcma to host booth at the Tml annual conference


TCMA is excited to host an exhibit booth at the Texas Municipal League Annual Conference and Exhibition on October 5-7 in San Antonio. The booth will promote the Campaign for Professional and Ethics City Management. Encourage your elected officials to visit booth 702 and learn how professionally trained individuals are critical for the day-to-day operation of cities. TCMA extends a special thanks to all the volunteers for participating and sharing their expertise. 

Don’t forget to support the TCMA hosted educational session at 10:45-11:45 a.m. on Thursday, October 6. The City of Taylor, recipient of the 2022 TCMA City Council of the Year, will be showcased. They will present Putting Taylor on the Map.

To register and learn more about the Conference, click here

2022 icma annual conference texas reception

ICMA Conference

If you’re attending the ICMA Annual Conference in Columbus, Ohio, plan to attend the Annual Texas Reception on Monday, September 19, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. in the Kojo Kamau Junior Ballroom A at the Hilton Columbus Downtown, located at 401 North High Street. 

tcma educational EVENTS

TCMA Podcast
Perspectives on City Management
Listen to episodes here

Tex-ICMA Coaching Webinars
(Pre-registration is required)

Organizational Culture
12:30-2:00 p.m., Thursday, September 8


Alternatives to Silos

12:30-2:00 p.m., Wednesday, October 20

Everyone Has Personal Challenges
12:30-2:00 p.m., Thursday, November 17

TCMA Webinar Series: Maximizing Mental Wellbeing in the Workplace

Managing the Stress of Relationships
1:00-2:00 p.m., Friday, October 21

How to Maintain a Mentally Healthy Workplace Environment
1:00-2:00 p.m., Friday, December 9

How to Become More Resilient During Challenging Times
1:00-2:00 p.m., Friday, February 17, 2023

Memos on Meetings

The Membership Committee met on August 11. Minutes are available here

The Ethics Committee met on August 18. Minutes are available here

The Professional Development Committee met on August 25-26. Minutes are available here

The next Board meeting is September 9.

All information is current as of the 25th of the month prior to publication.

In-Transition Services
To see if you qualify for TCMA 
In-transition Services, please 
click here. For a list of current city management job openings in Texas click here.

Career Compass
Career Compass is a monthly column addressing career issues for local governmental professional staff. To view current and past articles, please click here.

Additional Resources
Visit for additional training opportunities, resources, and advancement of professional local government around the globe. 

If  you have some interesting news that you would like to see included in the Management Messenger, please email