City of Duncanville Employee Resigns After City Manager Terminated

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Resignation Letter By Joshua Blubaugh/Duncanville Management Analyst

*This is the resignation letter printed as received by Joshua Blubaugh. It has not been edited.

The decision by the four victors to terminate Ms. Ferrell-Benavides was arranged in an unethical evaluation process that goes against my values and the values I must uphold as a public servant and program evaluator. Clear observations include:

  • The evaluation is not comprehensive and lacks supporting evidence on victor’s assessments, with some individuals poorly rating Ms. Ferrell-Benavides without providing comment or feedback. The council is responsible for providing critical feedback, and feedback is a crucial component of any evaluation process.
  • The public comment period suggests unwavering support, internally and externally, for Ms. Ferrell-Benavides. With most of the public supporting her, your decision is alarmingly unsubstantiated without evidence of her alleged poor performance.
  • You succumb me to believe your justification is based on her discovering years of flagrant financial oversight, pressure from a small (<1% of Duncanville population), primarily white and powerful tightly knit group, and
  • Based on Ms. Ferrell-Benavides’s skin color and gender.

Local governments nationwide face a hiring crisis, and your city is not alone. Most municipalities are eager for young talent to replace an aging workforce, spark innovation and offer new working methods that are motivated by increasing efficiency and outcomes.

The resistance I’ve encountered from the four council members is shocking, considering the shambles city employees have been working diligently to repair and make better for the past two years. Your city is not like other cities. Not because it is “special” but because it has been neglected for decades, defying smoke signals pleading for you to catch up with the region.

Plans for retention and recruitment are endangered now, as Ms. Ferrell-Benavides and her network were the sources for acquiring high-quality talent. Processes and current projects will be disturbed by the transition, and any initiatives planning for implementation will be halted. The ultimate burden falls on the city employees handling another change, understaffed, leaderless, lacking cohesive visioning, and by yesterday’s decision, guided by a council in complete opposition against city employees and their work.

And I cannot work for a city governed by four elected leaders leading an unethical evaluation of a city manager terminating her for purely personal reasons. My career in public service means more to me than my job in Duncanville, so I must move forward to a new organization where my talent will be supported, and I can faithfully and ethically continue my work.

This is my resignation letter, effective immediately.

Joshua Blubaugh