PTC's McMullen deserves better than he got
The Citizen’s recent article, “PTC city manager ousted; documents show rift with mayor,” will be one of the final articles written about Bernard McMullen, Peachtree City’s city manager since 2003; and although it certainly gets the reader’s attention, it is not at all representative of Bernie’s legacy.
The next day an article was written to clarify that Bernie was not “ousted” and that “he elected on his own to retire.” Reading on, there was not one positive thing mentioned in the article to reflect the long hours and the dedication Bernie put into running our city for the last seven years.
So I thought it appropriate to mention that during Bernie’s tenure the city was named:
• Top 10 Best Places to Live in the U.S., CNN/Money Magazine, 2009, 2005.
• Top 100 Best Places to Live in the U.S., CNN/Money Magazine, 2007.
• Top 100 Places to Live — RelocateAmerica.com, 2008, 2009.
• Georgia’s Best Affordable Suburb — BusinessWeek, 2009.
• Top 10 Places to Retire, Retire in Georgia Magazine, 2008.
• 10 Great Places for Boomers, Newsmax Magazine, 2009.
• 10 U.S. Communities With Great Ideas (Peachtree City Path System), National Association of Area Agencies on Aging, 2007.
Our city government earned the following awards:
• 2009 CREATE Community Award for the Online GIS Mapping System, Atlanta Regional Commission.
• Certified City of Ethics since 2000, Georgia Municipal Association.
• Energy Efficiency Leader in Municipal Government, Trane, 2009.
• Internationally Accredited and State Certified Police Department, CALEA.
• Top Georgia Government Website, 2010.
Now, did Bernie achieve these awards solely, without collaboration or help from our excellent staff? Was he above reproach? Of course not. But the city manager of a city that receives such accolades should be proud of his part in such accomplishments, and so should we.
Another one of the best measures of a leader’s performance and abilities is to take a look at his employees and their turnover rate. The quality and dedication of our city’s administration and staff is exemplary, and it has been shown that when they come to work here, they stay. That alone speaks volumes.
On a personal note, corresponding regularly with staff, attending meetings, sitting on committees, etc., I have always been impressed with Bernie, his knowledge base, his willingness to correspond, and his conduct during meetings. He has always defended his staff and what he felt to be in the best interests of PTC, while walking the fine line between advising and staying objective.
While council conducts its search for a new city leader moving forward it may be well advised to contemplate on the words of 1993 Nobel Peace Prize recipient Nelson Mandela:
“As a leader ... I have always endeavored to listen to what each and every person in a discussion had to say before venturing my own opinion. Oftentimes, my own opinion will simply represent a consensus of what I heard in the discussion. I always remember the axiom: a leader ... is like a shepherd. He stays behind the flock, letting the most nimble go out ahead, whereupon the others follow, not realizing that all along they are being directed from behind.”
Thank you Bernie for your service and contributions to our city; it did not go unnoticed or unappreciated.
Peachtree City, Ga.