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City's New Publicist Starts Job Monday

Peggy Flynn, a Santa Rosa resident, has 15 years of public sector and nonprofit management experience.

There is a new voice for the city of Novato — an official public communication coordinator to boost outreach between the local government and the masses.

Peggy Flynn, a Santa Rosa resident with 15 years of public sector and nonprofit management experience, was introduced Wednesday by City Manager Michael Frank.

By a 4-1 vote, with Pat Eklund dissenting, the Novato City Council approved the reclassification of an existing position to "continue the city’s commitment to transparency and community engagement," according to a release. Flynn will report directly to Frank and start work Sept. 24. Her starting salary is $83,736.

Flynn most recently worked for the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District. She served as communications manager for the now-defunct San Jose Redevelopment Agency and for the Santa Clara Valley Water District as well. She was a consultant for the Downtown San Mateo Association, a public affairs assistant with San Jose State University and a business manager at a biotech firm.

"The City Council has made it a priority to enhance our public outreach program, and we believe that Peggy is the right person to advance this goal," Frank said in the release. "She has extensive experience in the field working for a number of public agencies, and her record of achievement is very impressive.” 

Flynn, who has a journalism degree from San Jose State University, is the former owner of a fitness gym in Illinois. She was the executive director for the Downtown Bloomington (Ill.) Association in 2006-2008.

“The Novato community is clearly a special place,” Flynn said. “I’m delighted to be joining the city of Novato and to support the City Council and staff so that by working together we can improve accessibility to information and strengthen public participation.”

The position represents no change to the city's staff count because it replaces an administrative vacancy.

Click here for a story about this in the Marin Independent Journal. 

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Jerome J Ghigliotti Jr September 23, 2012 at 05:30 PM
GREAT QUESTIONS. Will the incumbent and deaf 4 answer this? Transparency, when it is convenient.
Craig Belfor September 23, 2012 at 05:36 PM
Jerome has nailed it again. If their actions don't impress you, change the person. Talk is easy. Actions count.
Craig Belfor September 23, 2012 at 06:38 PM
I disagree with you Eleanor. The minority is actually a majority. It just looks like a minority at the voting booth. Other than the weekly bye week with pads the NFL calls the Oakland Raiders, there is no more assured victory than being an incumbent in Novato, where only a small minority votes, and clicks on the name they recognize, as long as they still have a job, a home, and haven't been victimized by a crime. They'll only vote for a change when they are unhappy. True citizens vote to prevent, others just react when it's too late.
Edwin Drake September 24, 2012 at 12:55 AM
Does she know HTML, CSS, XML, or other web related tools? Much is made of her maintaining the city web site.
janna nikkola September 28, 2012 at 03:37 AM
Brent, I don't feel the comments here are complaints about Peggy personally. The comments have to do with the fact that the city council and city manager see a need for such a position at all. Surely you must agree the city council has had far too many secret closed meetings, so it's safe to assume they were discussing issues they did not want the taxpayers to know about. They were "called" on their excessive number of closed meetings, so out came a statement refuting their unwillingness to be more transparent. Next thing we know they've hired a communications consultant at the outrageous salary of $83,000+ which is being paid by the taxpayers. So the outrage is directed at the city council and the city manager for creating this position -- no one has anything against her personally -- but it's easy to question her background when someone starts out being outraged that a such a position has been created at all. My take on this is that it will be her job to put a positive spin on actions and decisions made by the city council and city manager that they know will cause outrage from the taxpayers -- so it's up to her to make these actions and decisions more palatable to the masses. I still think Minister of Propaganda is a good job title.

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