Dr. Frank Benest

Until August 2008, Frank Benest served as the City Manager of Palo Alto, California. He is a noted consultant and trainer on rightsizing public organizations, entrepreneurial government, civic engagement, leadership development and succession planning.

Prior to his appointment in Palo Alto, Frank served as City Manager in Brea and Colton, California. He has a doctorate in management from Brigham Young University; a Masters in Public Administration from California State University, Long Beach; and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Yale University. Frank is a Credentialed ICMA Manager.

Frank is Past President of the California City Managers Department and past Vice President of the International City/County Management Association (ICMA). Frank teaches at Stanford University and has been inducted into the National Academy of Public Administration.

Frank currently serves as the ICMA Senior Advisor for Next Generation Initiatives and Co-Chair of the Cal-ICMA Coaching Program.

“Let Me Be Frank” – A Personal Mission Statement

“Who am I? What am I passionate about? Why do I do this stuff?

I’ve been devoted to public service, especially local government, since I started my government career as a junior recreation leader at age 14. As a program supervisor, department head, city manager, teacher, consultant and trainer, I have always been most fulfilled when helping to improve the lives of community and organizational members and enhance public-serving agencies.

My passions include sharing my skills, energy and experiences with public leaders so that they can better engage citizens and employees, foster innovation, and encourage entrepreneurship and organizational transformation. In recent years, mostly because of the impending crisis we face in human resources, I have focused much of my energies in developing the next generation of government leaders and helping senior managers renew themselves.

My favorite assignments come from committed organizations that help me grow, stretch, learn, explore and challenge myself while helping to make public-serving organizations and their communities better than ever. I want to continue making a difference at many different levels.

How can I collaborate and partner with you?”

Click here for profile of Frank published by Joint Venture Silicon Valley.

Quotes That Guide My Practice

“Leaders don’t force people to follow – they invite them on a journey.”
Charles Lauer

“We want to create “leader-full organizations”…leaders at every level of our organizations.
Margaret Wheatley

“The ability to learn may be the only sustainable competitive advantage.”
Arie De Geus

“The future never just happens; it is created.”
Will and Ariel Durant

“You must be the change you wish to see in the world.”
Mahatma Gandhi

“Our souls are not hungry for fame, comfort, wealth or power... Our souls are hungry for meaning, for the sense that we have figured out how to live so that our lives matter, so that the world will be at least a little bit different for our having past through it.”
Rabbi Harold Kushner

“What is crucial is to begin. Things happen and opportunities appear most often when we’re moving, not when we are standing still.”
Michael Josephson

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
Dr. Martin Luther King

“Knowing exactly how much of the future can be introduced into the present is the secret of great government”.
Victor Hugo

“What you can do, or dream you can, begins in boldness. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.”
Wolfgang Von Goethe

“The ultimate freedom is the capacity to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances.”
Viktor Frankl

© 2008 Dr. Frank Benest, All Rights Reserved.
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