Facilitated 315 W. Ponce Meeting Date Set

Otis White
Otis White

The city writes in letting us know “that the facilitated public meeting regarding the redevelopment proposal for 315 W. Ponce de Leon Ave. is scheduled for Wednesday, October 15, 2008 at 6:30 p.m. in the City Commission Meeting Room, Decatur City Hall, 509 N. McDonough Avenue.  Otis White will be the facilitator.”

Check out Mr. White’s bio after the jump.  Judging from his background, he is no slouch.

Slightly more intriguing is a “7 Big Lessons for Local Governments” article that White penned for Governing magazine, before leaving in January 2006.  Lesson 3 is particularly poignant for our city.

Otis White is president of Civic Strategies, Inc., an Atlanta-based firm that helps communities make important decisions. Civic Strategies is best known for its community visioning projects, but it also designs
and manages community leadership summits, civic task forces and planning retreats, and consults with companies on community relations issues.

Otis writes frequently about communities and decision making.  From 2002 to 2007, he was a columnist for Governing magazine about urban issues. He has also written for the New York Times and other publications. He has been quoted by newspapers and magazines ranging from the Wall Street Journal to Time magazine and has been a regular commentator on the National Public Radio show, Smart City. He is working on a book about how civic leaders make sweeping changes in communities.

Before starting Civic Strategies, Otis was a journalist and magazine executive. He is a former editor and publisher of Georgia Trend magazine, an award-winning business magazine, and vice president of Trend Magazines, Inc. In 1982, he won the prestigious Alicia Patterson Fellowship, allowing him to spend a year studying how computers were changing work in America.

Otis is a graduate of Columbus State University in Georgia and Columbia University in New York.  In his consulting practice, Otis has worked with numerous governments, non-profit organizations and companies, including the University System of Georgia, Georgia Power Co., the Virginia Performing Arts Foundation, the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, Augusta-Richmond County, GA, the city of Springboro, Ohio, the Iowa State Association of Counties, the Lilly Endowment and AT&T.