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Davison part of task force

City manager will be in Phoenix for women’s conference

October 7, 2012
By DAVE GOSSETT - Staff writer ( , The Herald-Star

STEUBENVILLE - City Manager Cathy Davison credits today's technology for her success in balancing her job and her family.

And Davison is expected to explain this week how shared electronic schedules allows her and her husband and their son to keep track of each other and their daily commitments during a Task Force on Women in the Profession meeting at the 2012 ICMA 98th-annual conference in Phoenix.

Davison has been asked to serve on the task force "to review the status of women in the profession and create recommendations and strategies for increasing the presence of women in local government management as ICMA moves into its next 100 years."

Article Photos

READY FOR DISCUSSION — Steubenville City Manager Cathy Davison stands in her City Hall office. Davison will join other city and county women administrators throughout the country during a meeting of the International City/County Management Association Task Force on Women in the Profession this week in Phoenix. -- Dave Gossett

"Women government administrators are in the minority in our country. There are a number of assistant city or county managers who are women. But many women generally don't pursue the manager's job because of the conflicts of their family and career," said Davison during an interview before she left for the week-long conference in Arizona.

Davison said the last task force meeting on women as city and county managers was held in 1975.

"I have been told we will be looking at some of the components of the report that was presented to the ICMA leadership at the 1976 conference. I think it is important for women to recognize the fact they can be government managers and have a family life as well," Davison said.

She also said the task force will consider development of future managers, membership recruitment and retention and changing dynamics of families.

"I can make it work because my husband and I can manage our household. We have today's technology for balancing our lives and for scheduling our lives around our jobs and our family," she noted.

"We actually have an app to show our family schedules. We can look at each other's schedules as well as our son's schedule throughout the day and week. That allows us to keep our family organized and maintain a strong family life," said Davison.

"During my career as a city manager in Steubenville and as the town administrator in Murfreesboro, N.C., I have learned a manager must take care of yourself and your family and also can be a city manager," noted Davison.

She is now completing her third year as Steubenville's city manager and already has agreed to a new three-year contract.

"It is a great honor for me to have been asked to serve on this task force and it is also an honor for our city," said Davison.

"And attending the annual conference allows me to discuss and hear about the latest updates in government finance, recycling programs, town-gown relationships and to learn how other communities approach different issues," stated Davison.

"It is enjoyable to meet with other city and county managers at this level. It is refreshing and educational," she remarked.

And while Davison is in Phoenix this week for the ICMA conference she will be using the technology she is fond of to remain in constant touch with city officials and employees.

"I have encouraged the department heads to call me or send me e-mails. I can sign requisition forms on my iPad. We will have an acting city manager while I am away but I am still very much the manager and will be in regular contact with City Council members as well as administration officials," she said.

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