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The Emergence Of Women City Managers In Texas In The Late 20th Century And The Early 21st Century
Godbey, Helen Kay
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The first generation of women city managers in the late 20th Century and early 21st Century have one thing in common: all were initially mentored and promoted by men. Like survivors of a Texas tornado that huddle in the closet and then peek out to see what is left of the world around them, these few women who became the first generation of assistant or city managers began to look around for other women who had also done so. Even though there were just a few, they began to mentor each other. I would propose that an enlightened public administration theory is what these women in public management have created through their experiences and actions. This enlightened theory acknowledges there is and always will be differences between males and females; those differences are true assets to organizations and society; those assets have equal power and value; the combination of these differences makes a new and more complete level of public service; and therefore, a new and more complete approach to public administration. As women play a larger role in public management by gaining a seat at the decision-making table, they are also acquiring formal power. This new power is not a redistribution of a limited amount of power and does not take away power from men. Rather, is an expansion of power taken to a new level of participation, contribution and inclusion, all for the betterment of public administration and the society it serves in the 21st Century.