For the past 30 years, I have worked as a city manager or administrator in five different communities in three different states. It’s a very public-facing job in which I’m often asked to do public speaking and writing. And despite my considerable experience in communicating to the public, I have been unable to find the words to adequately describe my feelings about the killing of George Floyd on May 25 in the custody of the Minneapolis Police Department. I feel grief, anger, sorrow, frustration and shame. My deepest condolences go out to George Floyd’s family and friends, and to the Black community in Edina and across our country who’ve felt this anger and pain too many times.
As a white leader of a Minnesota local government, I recognize the power and privilege that’s been given to me to lead. I understand that with this privilege, I must work with the City of Edina leadership, our residents and other members of our community to help lead the way in reversing the societal failings that have produced the unacceptable disparities for Black people in our city, state and country. I pledge to everyone reading this that I will actively listen to people of color and continue to learn how to effectively use my power and privilege for that purpose.
We will do better.
- Scott Neal, Edina City Manager