Call for Speakers

Share your passion for speaking and local government at the 2018 ICMA Annual Conference. Apply to be a speaker for select sessions today!

Why Speak at #ICMA2018?

The purpose of the ICMA Annual Conference is to offer an abundance of educational, information-sharing, and networking tools to help local government professionals manage their community in today’s complex environment. Attendees pack into each of the sessions for tools, tips, information, and resources because they know they'll be receiving high-quality insight from experts like you. With thousands of attendees, the ICMA Annual Conference is a great platform for you to share your experience and expertise for previously-selected sessions.

Call for Speakers

The 2018 Call for Speakers is open through Friday, March 23, 2018, for sessions listed below.

Apply Now to Be A Speaker 

The process to apply:

  • Applications are being sought for the sessions listed below.
  • All applications will be reviewed.
  • Potential speakers will be contacted for more information. 
  • Please note that application submittal does not guarantee selection.
  • Applications should be emailed to

Please note: We are unable to accept proposals for new educational sessions at this time.

We thank you in advance for your thoughtful application. Please direct any questions to

Speakers Are Being Sought for the Following Sessions

Affordable Housing: The What and the How

Our communities must include the needs of all our citizens to help sustain themselves into the future. Providing affordable housing is one way to address this need. This session will provide tools and ideas to work with partners from the private and non-profit sectors to build quality, well-managed properties that serve the needs of our citizens.

When It’s All on the Line: How Are You Protecting Yourself and the Community?

When disaster hits your community, you owe it to your citizens to have an airtight crisis plan that’s smart, thorough, and easy to execute. Learn what your considerations should be in order to get your teams prepared before disaster strikes.

One for the Ages

How does a community meet the service needs of its senior citizens while maintaining services for all other age groups? How can seniors be engaged in the community? What are the best practices? This session will address ways to address the wide-ranging needs of our aging populations.

Staffing for the Future: Does Your Community Need an Equity Officer?

Local governments are being presented a unique opportunity to increase trust among citizens and address pressing issues that diverse communities face by adding new positions, or departments that focus on equity and inclusion throughout organizations and communities. Learn from current equity officers the keys to hiring the best candidate for the job and the benefits of having an internal equity and inclusion professional.

Power Imbalances: Implementing Integrity in the Workplace

This session explores sexual harassment in local government organizations, the consequences, choices, and options. Learn how best to handle and identify harassment and gender bias. Learn about the impact on local governments, including the loss of talent and trust.

Abuse and Addiction – It’s in Your Workforce, Too

It’s easy to label drug abuse as an external law enforcement and societal issue, but it also impacts our employees.  Learn how your organization can address testing, treatment, legalized marijuana, alcohol, employee rights, productivity, and public safety.

Leadership Development Starts Day One

What are you doing from onboarding forward to develop and retain talented employees?  Discover how to encourage mentoring, diversify work experiences, and provide growth opportunities.  It’s not about handpicking successors, but building a deep bench, and it doesn’t have to bust your budget.

Progressive Era vs. Google Era Workforce Rules  

The workplace is moving beyond time clocks and hidebound classifications. See how flexible approaches can improve local government work environments, leave policies, competitive compensation structures, overtime, and employee development, while still preserving the intent of civil service reforms.

"We, Not Me" - Beyond Service Awards

How do you build a culture of success, employee trust and engagement, and continuous improvement? Explore the most effective ways of recognizing high performers, dealing with “energy vampires,” and fostering team cohesion.

Newsroom to YouTube: Scalable Community Engagement 

No matter your population, see how you can communicate with your residents through a host of traditional and tech tools to listen, share, survey, and collaborate more effectively.

Evolution of a Smart City

What is a “Smart City?” This session will explore how cities get started in growing innovations across their organization to improve the efficiency in delivering local government services.

The Authenticity Dilemma: Reconciling Your Public and Private Self

Are you effectively incorporating your natural gifts and talents from your personal life into your role as a manager?  Most managers struggle with maintaining their effectiveness while also staying true to themselves. Attend this session to gain tips for balancing your personal (private) beliefs while still being responsive to the “public’s will” (board decisions). 

Showcasing Yourself

What do recruiters and city councils look for in candidates?  Learn to tailor cover letters and resumes to be a successful candidate for a higher-level position, to prepare before the interview, and to be ready for the offer.

Seeking Help: Mental Illness and the Criminal Justice System

This session identifies programs for mental health services in communities and county jails that have proven to be efficient and effective with systems and policies that mitigate mental health incarceration (mental health diversion programs).

Grow Your Own

What resources are needed to guide staff transitions from employees to department heads? In small communities, people are often promoted or hired based on their subject matter expertise, but haven’t been trained as mangers or supervisors. This session will highlight how local governments can grow the talent they need.

When “Mom and Pop” Need a Little Help

This session focuses on assisting “Mom and Pop” stores stay in business and meet community demands. Small community managers will learn how to: use incentives to keep existing businesses growing, educate local business owners competition in the local market, and grow a healthy retail sector.

Big Expectations for High Service Levels on a Small-Town Budget

Managing realistic community expectations requires providing residents with an understanding of the community’s ability to deliver services with limited resources. We’ll explore strategies to communicate budget and staff limitations, creative solutions for collaborative service delivery, and how to stretch resources.

Apply Now to Be A Speaker

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