Each year, County News interviews the outgoing NACo president for his or her reflections on their term. Tarrant County, Texas Commissioner Roy Charles Brooks offers his reflections.
How would you describe your year as NACo president?
It is the capstone of my career in public service. It has allowed me to promote a cause about which I am passionate, “Serving the Underserved, Counties Addressing Generational Poverty,” with a special emphasis on our children. I have traveled the country and met many wonderfully committed county leaders. And I am heartened by the level of skill and dedication that my colleagues across the country possess.
What was the most challenging part of your role as president?
Undoubtedly, the travel. Waking up virtually every morning in a new place, sometimes wondering just where the heck I am. But meeting each day with enthusiasm to meet new people, to show the NACo flag and to engage with others about county priorities.
What did you find most interesting or exciting?
The range of challenges facing our member counties and the similarities among those challenges in counties both urban and rural. I’m also excited by the creative approaches I’ve seen toward using county resources to meet these challenges and the resilience of the county spirit to keep rising every morning determined to make the new day a better one.
What are you proudest of?
Shining the light of NACo on our human infrastructure; the people we serve. I’m also proud to have excited the idealism of a new generation of county leaders who came to public service with a passion to serve real people with real challenges caused by lack of opportunity, inadequate workforce skills, poor healthcare. I am proud to have been able to point member counties to best practices which they can use to address these concerns.
What advice would you give your successor?
What’s next for Roy Charles Brooks?
I will continue to fight the good fight every day to make our people stronger, our counties more effective and our nation worthy of the American dream.
NACo is a great organization that is relevant to policy formation in Washington and to policy implementation back at home. It has been my greatest joy to serve as NACo President.Hero 1