Hamilton city manager makes unique top 100 list

Hamilton’s city manager has been recognized on a rather unique “top 100 list” — one that is named after a television character whose over-the-top enthusiasm propels his work to solve city issues.

Joshua Smith was named to “The Chris Traeger List: Top 100 Local Government Influencers” compiled by ELGL, an organization for public service leaders.

Traeger is the character from NBC’s comedy series “Parks and Recreation,” played by actor Rob Lowe. The fictional Pawnee, Ind., city manager was an extremely positive man with energy to spare, always ready to attempt to solve his city’s issues on the popular television series, which ran from 2009-2015.

“Our perfect Traeger List award winner is someone who has a jammed packed daily schedule, but makes time for an informational interview or to present a webinar to a nationwide audience. Our list is full of individuals quiver at the phrase ‘I’m too busy,’ ” ELGL said in announcing its list.

Smith, who ranks No. 15 on the list, became Hamilton’s city manager in 2010.

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Many of Smith’s supporters went into great detail about his impact on the city, according to ELGL.

One example included on the website:

“Josh came to Hamilton when nearly every window was shuttered and the death rattle wasn’t far off. He came with a vision of revitalization and change. Not only has he inspired others to “believe in Hamilton” he actually gets stuff done. He works with every facet of our city to make huge changes happen.”

Some other notable names on the list include Dallas Police Chief David Brown, who captured the list’s top spot; Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley (No. 6); and Tim Kaine, the former Richmond, Va., mayor and city councilor who is now Hillary Clinton’s running mate.

Smith, who is Hamilton’s 17th city manager, earned a Master of Public Administration degree from Iowa State University and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Sioux Falls.

This may be one of the more unique “top” lists Smith has been named to, but it is not the first.

In 2014, Smith was named to one of 13 to watch on Cincy Magazine’s annual Power 100 List.

He was the recipient of the Development Counsellors International first ever 40 Under 40 Award in 2013. The award recognizes individuals worldwide for their economic development skills.

Also in 2013 he was recognized by the Cincinnati Business Courier’s Forty Under 40 as one of the “next generation of young leaders and innovators.”

In 2012, the Greater Cincinnati Chapter of American Society for Public Administration named Smith its Administrator of the Year — Individual Contributor.

ELGL says: “the top 100 is not based on title or longevity. It’s based on the influence that an individual is having in their community and outside their community through professional associations, publications, and presentations.”

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