Lawrence assistant city manager wins award for leadership in city’s response to homelessness

photo by: City of Lawrence screenshot

Lawrence Assistant City Manager Brandon McGuire speaks during the Lawrence City Commission meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2023. McGuire was recently selected as the recipient of the Kansas Association of City/County Management's Leadership Award.

Brandon McGuire, one of Lawrence’s assistant city managers, was honored recently at the Kansas Association of City/County Management annual conference as the recipient of the Leadership Award.

The city announced the honor in a news release on Monday. Per the release, the award since 2021 has been presented to a KACM member who has led an organization or community through a difficult time and upholds the International City/County Management Association code of ethics.

The release notes that McGuire received the award due to his leadership in the city’s response to homelessness. He has played a role in helping the city to form “productive and successful” partnerships with community organizations like Douglas County and the Lawrence Community Shelter, which have resulted in the “A Place for Everyone” community plan that lays out how the city and its partners will address homelessness moving forward.

“It is a great honor to be recognized by my colleagues in the city/county management profession, all of whom lead their own organizations and communities through adversity,” McGuire said in the release. “I am especially thankful for the wisdom and support of my Lawrence and Douglas County colleagues, current and past, including (City Manager) Craig Owens, (Assistant City Manager) Casey Toomay, (former Assistant City Manager) Diane Stoddard, (Douglas County Administrator) Sarah Plinsky and (Assistant Douglas County Administrator) Jill Jolicoeur. I am privileged to work in a community committed to ending chronic homelessness for its residents.”

Owens said in the release that McGuire has been essential in the city’s work to end chronic homelessness, and added that his “resiliency to work through failed experiments and his integrity to face critics” shows a level of leadership that other professionals in the field should recognize.

KACM also announced the recipient of the Buford M. Watson Jr. Award at the annual conference last week, named after the former city manager of Lawrence. The award is given to a local government manager who has displayed the attributes of Watson, including serving as a role model in dealing with constituents and encouraging new members of the profession. Stoddard, who left the City of Lawrence earlier this year to serve as city administrator in Leawood, was selected as the recipient of the award.


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