Executive Director, ICMA
Marc A. Ott is currently the Executive Director of ICMA – the International City/County Management Association – which serves as the authority on leadership and management for appointed professional managers and administrators serving U.S. and international local governments. Prior to joining ICMA, from January 2008 to October 2016, Ott served as city manager of Austin, Texas, a full-service city with 40+ departments, a workforce of 14,000 employees, an all-funds budget of $3.7 billion, and a AAA bond rating that was maintained throughout his tenure. During his nearly nine years as chief executive and chief administrative officer, Ott championed employee empowerment, civic dialogue, innovation, and fiscal sustainability with the goal of having Austin recognized as the “Best Managed City in America.” Ott has had a long and distinguished career in municipal management. Before joining Austin, he served as assistant city manager for infrastructure services for the City of Fort Worth, Texas (2002-08), where he was responsible for the infrastructure operations carried out by the Water, Transportation and Public Works, Engineering, and Aviation departments. He was also responsible for implementing one of the city council’s top strategic priorities: promoting orderly growth.
Before moving to Texas, Ott served as city administrator of Rochester Hills, Michigan (1998-2002), where he had administrative and managerial oversight over all municipal operations. He also served as city manager (1993-97), deputy city manager (1991-1993), and as an assistant city manager (1990-91) in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Ott served in leadership and support roles for the cities of Grand Rapids and Jackson, Michigan (1982-90), and as a staff assistant to the Michigan Municipal League (1981-82). He earned his bachelor’s degree in management with a concentration in economics from Michigan’s Oakland University and a master’s in public administration from the same university. He is also a graduate of the Program for Senior Executives in State and Local Government at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and serves on the Board of Directors for the Alliance for Innovation. Ott received an ICMA Service Award in 2012 in honor of his 30 years of service to local government.