BA City Manager Michael Spurgeon Honored with Award

Courtesy photo
GERALD WILKINS AWARD WINNER: Dave Slezickey, right, vice president of the CMAO Board and city manager of Kingfisher, presents the 2020 Gerald Wilkins Award to B.A. City Manager Michael Spurgeon.

Broken Arrow City Manager Michael Spurgeon was named the 2020 Gerald Wilkins Award winner by the City Management Association of Oklahoma (CMAO). The announcement came during CMAO’s virtual Annual Summer Conference on Aug. 19.
Spurgeon, who has served as Broken Arrow’s city manager since September 2015, was surprised with the award at City Hall a week prior to the formal announcement.
“It’s hard to believe that I’ve been in this profession for over 30 years. For me it’s always been about something more important than myself,” Spurgeon said tearfully when accepting the award. “It’s been about trying to give back to those communities that I serve and realizing that I can’t do it by myself. It takes a governing body that has the same desire to make the community that they represent better and secondly, building a strong leadership team and support staff. If you don’t surround yourself with great people, you’re not going to be successful.”
Informally known as the City Manager of the Year Award, the Gerald Wilkins Award honors city managers in Oklahoma who strengthen the city management form of government through their stable length of service to cities, dedication to civic activities and participation in and contribution to CMAO and the International City/County Management Association.
“Michael is a terrific leader in our community,” said Broken Arrow Mayor Craig Thurmond, who nominated Spurgeon for the award. “He actively pushes Broken Arrow forward and helps the city maintain a positive image within the state, region and across the country. He embraces a high level of standards that has contributed to a positive atmosphere around the community.”
“This award is nominated by peers and colleagues. It is also selected by peers and colleagues, so just to be nominated for this award is a humbling honor,” said Dave Slezickey, vice president of the CMAO board and city manager of Kingfisher, who presented the award. “You’ve been recognized by others for your achievements, and you’ve made achievements with others. When someone calls you and wants to know what’s going on in the City of Broken Arrow, you don’t hesitate to go sell your community and tell them how much you love it.” 
Spurgeon has been involved in city administration for over 33 years, with 12 of those years in Oklahoma (Broken Arrow and Miami). He is currently a board member for the Oklahoma Municipal League and the Broken Arrow Economic Development Corporation.
The four others who were nominated for this year’s award are: Warren Lehr, city manager of Owasso; Tim Lyon, city manager of Midwest City; Joan Riley, city manager of Sapulpa; and Jim Thomas, former city manager of Claremore.