November 2023

TCMA Management Messenger

William “King” Cole Series
Management Transitions
New Members
New Member Applications
Meet Your Colleagues
Honoring Senior Advisor Kay Godbey
Awards and Scholarships
Ethics Corner
TCMA Represented at the TML Annual Conference
TCMA Educational Events
Memos on Meetings

William "King" cole series


Don’t miss this nationally respected educational program where you will learn 
the fundamentals of the city management profession.

Session 1 will address the fundamentals of city management.

Session 2 takes a deeper look at leadership skills, diversity, communication skills, human resources, and technology.

To learn more and register, visit the William “King” Cole Series website.

If you have any questions, please email or call 512-231-7400.

Management transitions

Cory Aspinwall is the new city administrator of the City of Lakeside City.

Clifford Blackwell is the new city manager of the City of Glenn Heights.

Derek Borg is no longer the city manager of the City of Princton. Leisa Gronemeier is serving as the interim city manager.

Kevin Carruth is the new city manager of the City of Groves.

Juan Cedillo is no longer the city administrator of the City of La Villa. Tony Barco is the new city administrator.

Stan Farmer is the new city administrator of the City of Bandera.

Ryan Henderson is the new city manager of the City of Anna.

Scott Huizenga is the new city manager of the City of Fair Oak Ranch.

David Jordan is the new city administrator of the City of Devine.

Denise Kelley will no longer serve as the city manager of the City of Jasper, effective January 12, 2024. 

William Linn is no longer the city manager of the City of Taft. Kandi Hubert is the interim city manager.

Sara Montgomery will no longer serve as the city administrator of the City of Niederwald.

John Naron is the new city manager of the City of Hondo.

Fred Sandoval is the new city manager of the City of San Benito.

Brandon Wright will no longer serve as the city manager of the City of DeSoto. He will serve as the new town manager of the Town of Trophy Club, effective December 8.

Shana Yelverton will no longer serve as the city manager of the City of Southlake, effective January 31, 2024. Alison Ortowski will serve as the new city manager.

New Members

The TCMA Management Messenger welcomes the following new members approved by the Executive Committee on October 24, 2023.

Full: Collin Boothe, Assistant City Administrator/Director of Finance; Jim Devlin, Assistant City Manager, Hewitt; Trent Epperson, City Manager, Pearland; Michael Neu, Chief of Staff, Leander; Winston Stephens, City Administrator, Haskell; Brian Weaver, City Manager, Merkel

Cooperating: Charlie Dankert, Account Manager, Veregy 

Student: Diamond Biaselli-Glover and Chloe Farias, University of Texas-San Antonio; Lauren Cargill, Texas A&M University; Angelica Gonzales, Texas Tech University; Henry Le, University of Texas-Austin; Piper Thomas, Trinity University

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 September:

Full: Kristin Gauthier, Assistant City Manager, Navasota; Frank Rios Jr., Interim City Manager, La Feria

Associate: Rebecca Barton, Assistant to the City Manager/Compliance Manager, Frisco; Polycarp Birika, Assistant to the City Manager/Plans Examiner Supervisor, Frisco; Jared DeVries, Management Analyst, Benbrook; Matthew DuBois, Assistant to the City Manager/Development Manager, Frisco

Meet Your Colleagues

The TCMA Management Messenger welcomes Dr. Jonathan B. Flores to his new position as the interim city manager for the City of Pharr. Prior to joining the City of Pharr on July 17, Jonathan served as the assistant city manager and police chief for the City of Alton. Additionally, he is an adjunct professor at Trevecca Nazarene University and South Texas College. 

Jonathan received his bachelor’s in criminal justice from the University of Phoenix, his master’s in public administration from the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, and his doctorate in educational leadership from Trevecca Nazarene University. 

Jonathan is a TML Leadership Fellow and has garnered numerous awards for his leadership and contributions to law enforcement, including a 2023 induction into the National Law Enforcement Hall of Fame. 

Jonathan and his wife, Rachel, have been married 23 years and have two children, Michael and Dominique. They also have one granddaughter, Layla, who they adore. Jonathan enjoys playing the guitar and relaxing at the beach with family. 

Meet Collegue graphic

The TCMA Management Messenger welcomes John McDonald to his new position as the city administrator of the City of Spring Valley Village as of September 5. He started his municipal career as an intern with the City of Kyle in 1999 and previously served as community development director for the City of Pearland. John has also served as the city administrator for the City of Ovilla and various positions in the cities of San Antonio, Dickinson, and Bellaire.

John received his bachelor’s degree from Tarleton State University and his master’s degree in public administration from Southwest Texas State. He is a 2018 graduate of the LEAD (Leading, Educating, and Developing) Program from the University of Virginia’s Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service.

John and Debi have been together for ten years and share five children. In his free time, John enjoys spending time with his family, traveling, live music, and tacos.

honoring senior advisor kay godbey

Kay GodbeyHaving served four years as a TCMA Senior Advisor, Kay Godbey recently decided it was time for a change of focus. During Kay’s tenure as a senior advisor, she counseled and assisted many members and was recently recognized by her colleagues as the recipient of the 2023 TCMA Lifetime Achievement Award. She is also the recipient of the 2021 Academician Award for her teaching and mentoring of students at The University of Texas-Arlington. During Kay’s career in local government, she served as the city manager of the City of Burleson from 1993 to 2001 and 18 years in various positions for the City of Euless including assistant city manager, city secretary, and staff support for the police department. TCMA thanks and honors Kay for her dedication to local government and those who serve. 


Betsy Sherman sympathyTCMA is saddened by the passing of Betsy Sherman on September 27. Becky served as director of members services and secretariat to the ICMA Executive Board. She was known and loved by many TCMA members and would often attend TCMA Annual Conferences. A memorial will be held in her honor in the spring of 2024. A complete obituary and information for charitable contributions can be found at Betsy Sherman

awards and scholarships

TCMA Awards and Scholarships_banner hires

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 submissions is January 5, 2024.


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

For information and applications, click here

TCMA also provides opportunities for professional development through scholarships. Unless otherwise noted, the deadline for submissions is January 5, 2024.  


  • Barney L. Knight Texas CPM Scholarship
  • Clarence E. Ridley Scholarship
  • Leadership Development Scholarship
  • Tom Muehlenbeck Scholarship (Deadline April 5, 2024) 


Julie RobinsonJulie Robinson Emerging Leader Professional Development Scholarship

This $5,000 scholarship was created in memory of Julie Robinson for her enduring mentorships and passion for professional development. 

For information about all scholarships, click here.

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

ethics corner

In the June 2023 Issue of PM Magazine, Martha Perego, ICMA ethics director, aptly stated in her “Ethics Matter” article that “everyone working in local government will encounter an ethical issue at some point in their career. No one is immune.”

I understand this all too well. In my experience, I wrongly assumed that navigating through our Code of Ethics was straightforward, especially for some tenants and guidelines. In two instances, I have been proven wrong and both centered around manager/employee relationships in the workplace, a topic that I believed did not need to be discussed because the consequences of a romantic entanglement between another in the organization was painfully obvious.

Under Tenet 3, the Guideline for Relationships in the Workplace states that members should not engage in an intimate or romantic relationship with any elected official or board appointee, employee they report to, one they appoint and/or supervise, either directly or indirectly, within the organization. The guideline further elaborates that this does not restrict personal friendships, professional mentoring, or social interactions with employees, elected officials, and board appointees. 

We spend a lot of our lives with our coworkers creating close bonds. Having too flexible boundaries can subtly evolve into a relationship that has crossed these boundaries. As a manager where you may see boundaries begin to be blurred, it is imperative to have open and frank discussions sooner rather than later. Once working relationships have crossed the line it is difficult to regain a healthy work environment. 

Spend time with your managers discussing ethical issues in the workplace and do not assume that a tenant or guideline is so obvious that it need not be covered. Create an environment to encourage everyone to talk about ethical concerns. 

Be cognizant of changing relationships in the workplace and be open. Be honest with your managers if you see signs that their relationships with others are blurring the ethical lines. An ounce of prevention…

Lean on your TCMA colleagues for advice in dealing with ethical issues. In my case, I was fortunate to get sound advice from colleagues on how to have a difficult conversation with an employee before lines were crossed. Do not hesitate to reach out to TCMA for assistance. Remember all of us will encounter an ethical issue at some point in our career’ and as TCMA members, we are here to help each other.

(Article submitted by Modesto Mundo, City Manager, Lake Jackson)

tcma represented at the tml annual conference

TML 2023 TCMA boothBarry Sullivan, City Manager, Gainesville; Mark Israelson, City Manager, Plano; and Howdy Lisenbee, City Manager, Commerce talk to attendees about the city management profession at the TML Annual Conference.

TML 2023 MansfieldCity of Mansfield presenters (from left to right): City Manager Joe Smolinski, Mayor Michael Evans, and Councilman Casey Lewis.

tcma educational EVENTS

TCMA Podcast  
Perspectives on City Management  
Listen to episodes here.

Tex-ICMA Coaching Webinars 
(For more information and to register, click here)

What to Do When Everything is Falling Apart: How to Reset
12:30-2:00 p.m., Thursday, November 16

Memos on Meetings

The Membership Committee is scheduled to meet via video conference on November 3. 

The Ethics Committee is scheduled to meet via video conference on November 9.

The Allies Committee is scheduled to meet November 15 in Austin.

The Board is scheduled to meet on January 19 in Austin. 

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 hereFor 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