McBride promises respect in public administrator bid

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

McBride promises respect, compassion in bid for county public administrator

Editor's note: The questionnaire answers of Democratic public administrator candidate Deborah McBride were inadvertently left out of Monday's story about the Cape Girardeau County primary election.

Name: Deborah McBride

Age: 47

Address: 1413 N. Farmington, Jackson

Party: Democratic

Occupation: Accounts manager for a large mental health agency

Religious affiliation: Rhema Word International Ministries

Other affiliations: National Federation of Paralegal Associates, African American Task Force Committee, Women in Politics, Heartland Alliance for Minority Participation, Kids Beat, Sisters with a Vision

What is the biggest issue facing the public administrator's job and what do you feel is the best way to address that issue?

I believe the biggest problem facing the public administrator is how to best connect this office and the services to the people who need them. During the transition to the new PA, it is important that the main aspects of this office not be altered as to disrupt services to the current wards. The new PA should repair old "bridges," the connections to the people now using the system, and build "new bridges" that will involve the wards, families, friends and caregivers in making lives safer, more secure and productive. Effective communication and solid planning are the keys to seeing the process completed.

Much of a public administrator's job deals with helping less fortunate people. Why will you be able to relate to these individuals?

The office of public administrator is not a dictatorship and the people it serves should not be treated or viewed as less than anyone else. It is the responsibility of the administrator to view each ward as an individual deserving of respect and to recognize their needs. I am confident that my educational background, including accounting, paralegal studies, as well as my work and volunteer experience with people, have prepared me for this task. I also have years of experience with the much needed organizational and management skills required to maintain an effective office.

Why do you think you will be able to balance compassion with budget limits?

I feel that balancing the budget with compassion for people can only come through respect. Respect begins with the first initial contact and is there throughout the relationship. With respect there should also be humility and compassion. But I also understand the importance of maximizing available resources. It is very important to be "budget minded." My educational background, work and volunteer experiences have equipped me to communicate with people of all levels of education. Compassion, respect and effective communication make the difference when you have to explain that the "money is just not there."

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