Downs, Hayworth land city leader awards

We have long thought that the Corridor is blessed with some of the best city managers anywhere. They are a big reason why our communities are so strong and vibrant.

This validation was reinforced recently when two of the Corridor’s city managers were given awards from the Iowa City/County Management Association (IaCMA).

Kim Downs, the city administrator of Hiawatha, was named IaCMA’s Manager of the Year. This award recognizes chief administrators whose accomplishments and superior work performance represent the best possible application of management principles, and whose creative contributions to professional local government management increases public awareness of the value of professional management to the quality of life in our communities.

Ms. Downs has been serving as city administrator since 2013 and before that as city clerk.

“Over the past seven years as city administrator, Kim has expanded her sphere of influence beyond Hiawatha’s City Hall into the metro area, as well as statewide,” said Hiawatha City Councilor Dick Olson in the nomination. “Kim has been humbled and honored to serve on the board of directors for the northeast Iowa Chapter of the Iowa League of Cities. As a result of demonstrating her selfless service to the NE board, Kim was invited to serve on the statewide Iowa League of Cities board of directors.”

Coralville City Administrator Kelly Hayworth, the longest serving city manager in the Corridor, was recognized by the IaCMA as the 2020 recipient of the Joe Lukehart Professional Service Award. This honor is given annually to individuals who have promoted or enhanced city/county management profession in the state.

Mr. Hayworth has served as the city administrator in Coralville for 30 years, during a time of unprecedented change and growth. He has overseen a doubling of the city’s population, along with projects including development of Coral Ridge Mall and the Iowa River Landing, now featuring the new Xtream Arena.

The IaCMA is an organization of local government management officials working together to improve the public administration profession in the state of Iowa.

Cedar Rapids City Manager Jeff Pomeranz is a past recipient of the Manager of the Year Award, while Marion City Manager Lon Pluckhahn is a past recipient of the Joe Lukehart Award.

Collins awarded big contract

With the continued uncertainty facing Collins Aerospace’s parent company Raytheon Technologies, which just announced that employment cuts will increase from 15,000 to 20,000 this year, it’s important to highlight one item of good news.

A Collins Aerospace division based in Colorado Springs has been awarded a $700 million contract from the U.S. Air Force for the development of the ACES 5 next-generation ejection seat for various USAF defense systems, including the Boeing F-15 fighter jet and Rockwell B-1 bomber.

While this work will be done in Colorado, it is nevertheless good news for a company that could use some.