3CMA Webinar – Engaging Residents on “Unengaging” Topics

Finding ways to actively engage your community can always be a challenge. It becomes even more difficult if the topic is sensitive or complex. The city of Olympia, WA, wanted to engage its residents in tackling the difficult issue of homelessness. And the city of Arvada, CO, wanted to enhance its visioning process and garner feedback directly related to affordable housing, short-term rentals, and transportation.

The challenge is how to engage people on issues that they don’t see as immediate concerns or ones that are not “in their backyard.” For residents focused on their own daily lives, how do you help them see the importance of sharing their ideas on addressing homelessness or a city’s long-term goals and plans?

Join us for this 3CMA webinar where representatives from both cities will walk us through their engagement processes on these challenging issues. They will share how they integrated face-to-face events with online dialogue, share successes and challenges, and highlight how they were able to be inclusive and respectful in bringing more voices into the conversation. They’ll also share their experience in refocusing many disjointed streams of public questions and comments (in social media, email, etc.) into one centralized location.


Kellie Purce Braseth, strategic communications director for the City of Olympia, WA, has led the city of Olympia’s communications since July 2015, and previously served with the South Puget Sound Community College, including serving as the dean of College Relations.

Ben Irwin, communications manager for the City of Arvada, has 20 years of public affairs and communications experience and has served in his current position since January 2019, directing all aspects of the city’s two-way communication programs

Jessica Prosser, AICP, assistant to the city manager for the City of Arvada, CO, is responsible for the Housing, Community Resilience, and Neighborhood Engagement Programs, as well as special projects related to City Council priorities.

Duration: 60 mins

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