Until August 2008, Dr. Frank Benest served as the City Manager of Palo Alto, California. Frank is a noted consultant and trainer on collaborative service delivery, 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 and serves as the Senior Advisor to ICMA on Next Generation Initiatives. Frank also chairs the Cal-ICMA Coaching Program.
Frank is Past President of the California City Managers Department and past Vice President of the International City/County Management Association. Frank teaches at Stanford University and has been inducted into the National Academy of Public Administration. In 2011, Frank was recognized by ICMA with its Distinguished Career Service Award. Read Dr. Benest's Career Compass Columns here.
Pamela Miller, Director & Principle Instructor
Pamela Miller has over four decades of experience working in public, private, and nonprofit sectors in California, North Carolina and Michigan. Having worked a number of years for others in the fields of executive management and training and development, Pamela started her own consulting group in 2014. Practiced in facilitating adult education, she successfully incorporates her leadership experience into her human and organizational development work. In addition to her training and consulting practice, Pamela has served as the Executive Director for the California Association of Local Agency Formation Commissions (CALAFCO) since 2012.
Prior to starting Miller Management & Consulting Group in 2014, Pamela served as the Executive Director for Continuing Education for Public Officials, Inc. (CEPO, Inc.), a nonprofit organization that provided leader development and training to current and emerging leaders in the public sector in California.
Pamela’s public sector experience includes serving as Administrative Manager for the County Executive Office and Clerk of the Board of Supervisors for Napa County, as Deputy City Clerk for the City of Vallejo and as a consulting analyst to the Contra Costa County Flood Control District’s clean water program. In addition to her public sector experience, she has 25 years of private sector management and customer care experience including project management and strategic planning.
Pamela earned a Master’s Degree in Organizational Leadership and Bachelor of Arts Degree from Siena Heights University. She has also earned a certification in Total Quality Management and completed the National Community Development Institute’s Community Builders Leadership Institute.
Wandzia Rose, Key Instructor
For over 25 years, Wandzia Rosehas assisted individuals as well as government, education, and non-profit agencies in enhancing their performance in delivering high-quality services. Prior to going into private practice, Wandzia held key positions in medium and large public sector and educational institutions in which she served as division manager, department head, assistant city manager, and interim city manager. Wandzia lead, managed, and transformed complex organizations and implemented, among others, staff and organization-wide development training programs resulting in widespread organizational transformation and community benefit. She is a founding member of the Leadership San Leandro program and from 1991-2014, served a tenured trainer for the Continuing Education for Public Officials (CEPO), a leadership development program and its associated Train-the-Trainer program. During her career, she served was a member on a number of League of California Cities Policy Committees as well as on the Government Technology Conference (GTC) Advisory Board. Wandzia now owns a successful management consulting and coaching practice. She co-created the Performance Leadership program, a comprehensive leadership development program designed to assist leaders at all levels to understand the complex dynamics that impact organizational performance. She is an Integrative Coach Professional certified by The Ford Institute for Transformational Training and she is also a certified trainer in Success Signals, a communication skills training program. Wandzia currently serves as a senior trainer for the City Clerk’s Association of California (CCAC) Master Clerk Academy offered through Miller Management and Consulting Group. Wandzia earned a B.A. degree from the University of San Francisco and is currently enrolled in the John F. Kennedy University graduate program on Consciousness and Transformative Studies.
Ed Everett, Guest Presenter
Ed Everett’s passion is to help cities understand and implement “community building/civic engagement” and share his research and practice in this field. In addition, he is using his 34 successful years in local government to be an Executive Coach to assist professionals to move up in the profession.
Ed, who recently retired, had been the city manager of Redwood City since 1992. In 2007 Ed was awarded ICMA’s “Award for Career Excellence”. During his career, he served as city manager of Belmont, assistant county manager for Washoe County, Nevada, and program analyst/fire chief for the City of Palo Alto.
After obtaining a degree in economics from U.C. Davis and a graduate degree in urban affairs from Princeton University, Ed gained valuable experience as a VISTA volunteer. While overseeing what some call the renaissance of Redwood City, he has focused a great deal of research, study and practice on ‘community building/civic engagement’. He understands the power of Community Building/Civic Engagement and lead Redwood City in achieving it core purpose: “Build a Great Community Together”.
Ed also serves as an executive coach to assist managers in developing their talents and skills to be successful in their organization. He has done significant coaching of younger people within local government through the “Next Generation” program.