The city of Nashville has appointed a chief strategy officer (CSO) to head up the municipal government’s delivery of high-level service and accountability initiatives.
In a Dec. 12 press release, Mayor Megan Barry announced that Brian Kelsey, formerly of Civic Analytics, an economic research and planning firm based in Austin, Texas, would be stepping in as the city’s first CSO.
“Brian Kelsey will be a great addition to our team in Metro [the Metro Government of Nashville and Davidson County], emphasizing bold, innovative strategies to operate a more transparent and effective government for the people of Nashville,” Barry said in the release. “While government isn’t a business, we can seek out and adopt successful business tools that will improve our operations and lead to better outcomes for constituents.”
Kelsey will work with department heads throughout the city to better align local government priorities with the budget, according to the mayor's office.
The creation of the chief strategist role follows recommendations from the Strategic Budgeting and Innovation Project Public Investment Plan earlier this year. The plan highlights the need for improved transparency and citizen-centric government in the coming fiscal year.
“Nashvillians should be confident that their tax dollars are being used efficiently to improve their quality of life in Davidson County,” said Metro Finance Director Talia Lomax-O’dneal. “Brian Kelsey, with the leadership of Mayor Barry, will be a critical component of our strategy to ensure our budget priorities are meeting the needs of Nashville."