Biography

Ryan Coonerty is a Supervisor for Santa Cruz County in California and a two-time former Mayor of the City of Santa Cruz. He is the cofounder of NextSpace Coworking + Innovation, a lecturer on law and government at UC Santa Cruz, and co-author of The Rise of the Naked Economy – How to Benefit from the Changing Workplace (Macmillan, 2013). He also wrote Etched in Stone – Enduring Words from our National Monuments (National Geographic, 2007). Ryan was selected by the Aspen Institute to be a Rodel Fellow in Public Leadership as one of “the nation’s most promising young elected officials.”

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Serving as mayor provides one with an array of opportunities to demean oneself on a regular basis—funny hats and dunk tanks tend to be involved. However, for me, and for most of the mayors I know, the lowest moments occur in the grandest corporate offices during economic development ‘recruitment’ trips. After schlepping the best …

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