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Justice, Fairness, Inclusion, and Performance.

Valerie Lemmie


Valerie Lemmie profile headshot
Valerie is the Director of Exploratory Research at the Kettering Foundation. Prior to this position, she served as City Manager for Petersburg, Virginia, Dayton, and Cincinnati, Ohio. She was Commissioner, Public Utility Commission of Ohio; District Director and Acting Chief of Staff for Congressman Turner (Ohio's 10th District). She also served as an Adjunct Professor at Howard University and the University of Dayton and as a Fellow at the Center for Municipal Management at George Washington University. She is Chair of the Dayton History Board of Directors; Board Member, Dayton Foundation; Immediate Past Chair, National Civic League Board; Trustee and Treasurer of Initiatives of Change, USA; Executive Committee Member, Deliberative Democracy Consortium; Vice Chair, Ohio Matriots Board of Directors; and Past Board Chair and Fellow, National Academy of Public Administration. She holds a B. A. in political science and urban sociology from the University of Missouri and an M.A. in Urban Affairs/Public Policy Planning from Washington University. Valerie is a published author and noted speaker on democratic governance and civic engagement.

History of Employment

Director of Exploratory Research
Kettering Foundation
Eastern Interconnection States Planning Council
District Director
Congressman Mike Turner's Office
Ohio Public Utilities Commission
The Charles F. Kettering Foundation
City Manager
City of Cincinnati Ohio
City Manager
City of Dayton, Ohio
City Manager
City of Petersburg, Virginia
Department of Environmental Services
City of Arlington, Virginia
Assistant Professor
Howard University
Deputy Director
Department of Consumer/Regulatory Affairs
Government of the District of Columbia
Assistant to the Director
Department of Consumer/Regulatory Affairs
Government of the District of Columbia
Project Director
Minority Business Development Services
One America, Inc
Special Assistant
Office of Business and Economic Development
Financial Policy Analyst/Course Manager
Office of Comptroller
Labor Department (on assignment from Kansas City, Missouri)
Primary Policy Areas

Civic Engagement, Intergovernmental System/Federalism, Intergovernmental Affairs and Coordination

Primary Sector of Expertise


Primary Functions

City Management, Nonprofit / NGO leadership

Management Matters Podcast

Grand Challenge: Protect Electoral Integrity and Enhance Voter Participation

Fostering a Robust Democracy with Valerie Lemmie

Season: 1 Episode:25 | October 05, 2020

Show Notes:

In this episode, we welcome Valerie Lemmie, Former City Manager, Current Director of Exploratory Research at the Kettering Foundation, and Academy Fellow, to discuss her career path in public administration, lessons learned on the job including difficult leadership decisions, fostering a citizen-centered democracy, and maintaining a healthy democracy through citizen engagement.

With Valerie Lemmie, former City Manager, Current Director of Exploratory Research at the Kettering Foundation, and Academy Fellow

Topics Include:

  • Valerie's journey in public service from "young idealist" to learning the mechanics of governmental organization and institutionalizing necessary changes
  • The importance of staff work, and how she learned quality is more important the quantity
  • Managing daily crises and sticking to the courage of her convictions
  • The challenges of organizational change
  • Valerie's experience at the Kettering Foundation: Ensuring citizen engagement and adapting and taking advantage of remote work

Music Credits: Sea Breeze by Vlad Gluschenko |
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Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License