Twenty-five people represented the community in Denver
By: María Alejandra Pulgar
NAHJ #37172 / SPJ #10009939
DORAL, FL – The City of Doral was announced on June 23rd as a Silver Winner of this year’s All-America City Award at the Conference of the National Civil League in Denver, Colorado.
It was announced in March that Doral was one of the 20 municipalities around the country finalists for the award, among other cities like Houston and San Antonio, Texas; Hallandale Beach, Florida; Sumter, South Carolina; Wichita, Kansas and West Hollywood, California.
Founded in 1894, the National Civic League is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that supports civic engagement, “to create equitable, thriving communities, by inspiring, supporting and recognizing inclusive approaches to community decision-making”. Among the civic leaders that founded the league were President Theodore Roosevelt and Justice Louis Brandeis.
In addition to the 70th All-America City competition, the conference was a weekend filled with training sessions and network opportunities on topics to develop civic engagement in the community such as: youth empowerment, health equity, and intergenerational wellbeing, preparation for the 2020 census, caring for veterans in the community, and measuring civic capital.
“This is a great opportunity to further position our City on the national and international stage, as a prime place to relocate your business, raise your family, invest, visit, and more,” said Mayor Juan Carlos Bermudez prior to his trip to Colorado.
“This recognition will help shine spotlight on how far Doral has come in just 16 years and the bright future that lays ahead. As attested by several city officials from winner communities, being an All-American City comes with positive benefits such as economic stimulus, community pride, collaboration, and even grants. A lot of work and heart has gone into this project by everyone involved who are taking time from their regular jobs and families, coming in after hours. I look forward to representing our City along with our delegation.”
All areas of civic engagement represented in the delegation
A delegation of 25 community members represented the City of Doral in Denver. It was led by Mayor Juan Carlos Bermudez, Vice Mayor Claudia Mariaca and the City Manager Albert Childress. Other people traveling to Colorado represented the Departments of Public Affairs, Parks and Recreations, Public Works and Police. Completing the Doral delegation were representatives from Advisory Boards, Parks and Police4Kids, Silver Club, Girls and Boys Scouts, and Community Partners (Mind and Body Social and In-Telligent).
Resolution 19-3205 was approved during the May Council Meeting; it allowed the City to use $37,135.00 to fund the attendance of the delegation to Colorado. According to the budget detailed on the Memo supporting the resolution, this allocation covered materials and props for the presentation, as well as conference registration, air travel, lodging and meals for all 25 members of the delegation.
The projects selected to represent Doral in front of the panel of 11 judges at the Conference were “Step Up for Your Health, Doral”, “Parks for Tomorrow Bonds” Referendum, and “Traffic Relief Efforts”. As explained by Public Affairs, the members of the delegation were “strategically selected based on involvement and knowledge of the three aforementioned projects to be included in the presentation, as well as a direct partnership with the City through City-approved programs, boards, and organizations.”
The preparation for the 10-minute presentation of these projects required weekly practices with all members of the delegation. The result of this experience was an “informative, animated and heartfelt” showcase of all the qualities that make the City of Doral a unique municipality in Florida. All presentations of the finalist cities were recorded in Denver and will be published for the public to enjoy.
The positive impact of being All-America City
For many other municipalities that have been recognized as All-America City in the past, being part of this competition has been a powerful marketing tool. They have observed benefits on attraction and retention of businesses, generating jobs and a stronger tax base; also they have seen an increase in tourism, grants and bonds ratings. They have also seen an increase in the sense of pride, accomplishment, and teamwork among their residents.
The National Civic League’s All-America City Award is the most prestigious civic award in the country. Beyond any tangible benefits, it was the national projection for the City of Doral what prompted the Council to enthusiastically support the administration on the initiative to apply for this award and attend the conference in Colorado because it acknowledged the capacity of the community to work together and obtain great achievements.
“To be in the running for this prestigious award affirms our community’s quality of life and Doral’s position as one of the nation’s model cities,” concluded Mayor Bermudez.
Doral Silver Winner of National League of Cities All-America City Awards