Dallas, Texas

Development Associates

Two-year MDA program
for Masters-level graduates interested in local government management as a career.

A CEO by any other name:

Podcast with Dallas City Manager Mary Suhm, courtesy of Enterprise Leadership.

Green Dallas...building a better city

City Manager Mary K. Suhm

City Manager Mary K. Suhm Mary K. Suhm is serving her eighth year as city manager for the City of Dallas. As city manager, Suhm is responsible for the daily operations of the municipal organization. She manages a staff of approximately 13,000 employees and a budget of nearly 3 billion. She was appointed city manager in June 2005 by the Dallas City Council. Prior to her appointment as city manager, Suhm served as interim city manager, first assistant city manager, assistant city manager, executive assistant director of Dallas Police, director of courts, assistant to the Mayor, and branch library manager for the City of Dallas.

During her three decades in municipal government, Mary Suhm has earned a national reputation among public administrators for creativity and innovation. Suhm, who earned master of business administration and master of library science degrees from the University of North Texas, has introduced performance measurement, customer service, benchmarking, strategic planning and other common business practices into municipal management operations to assure that Dallas city government runs efficiently, economically, and effectively. She received praise from all levels of government and the community for her leadership during Hurricanes Katrina and Rita after managing a large scale evacuation effort by establishing and operating two major shelters and a Disaster Recovery Center in Dallas.

As a result, she has won numerous awards from her peers including Public Administrator of the Year (2007, American Society for Public Administration—North Texas Chapter). In 2006, the Women’s Council of Dallas County named Suhm “Woman of the Year” and she is also the recipient of the Linda Keithley Award for Women in Public Management given by the North Central Texas Council of Government (1995). In 2008, she received the YMCA Metropolitan Dallas Centennial Award, which honors women who have had the most significant influence on the City during the past century. In 2009 she was honored by the Dallas Historical Society with the Jubilee History Maker award for her work in building a strong business environment to create growth and excellence for the Dallas community. In 2010, The Greater Dallas Planning Council recognized Suhm with the Kessler Award for her commitment to urban design and planning the city’s future.

NOTE: This 360-word biographical sketch can be read in its entirety to introduce the city manager.

Updated: October 2012

Office Location

Dallas City Hall
1500 Marilla Street
Room 4EN
Dallas, TX 75201

Main Phone
(214) 670-3297


Lindsay Kramer
(214) 670-1858

Harim Logan
(214) 670-4549

Margie Saabedra
(214) 670-3297


Implements policy decisions made by Mayor and Council

Prepares recommended budget

Coordinates City operations and programs

Appoints and supervises City personnel not appointed by the Council

Enforces municipal laws and ordinances

Recommends improvement in operations

Mayor and City Council Office

Civil Service

Office of Financial Services

Human Resources

Intergovernmental Services

Public Information Office


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