Meet our Community Engagement and Development Specialist


colton dale



 Contact Information


 Colton Dale
 Community Engagement and
 Development Specialist


 City of Oak Park
 14000 Oak Park Blvd
 Oak Park, MI 48237
 (248) 691-7589
 Email: CDale@OakParkMI.gov






What Does the Community Engagement and Development Specialist Do?

The central mission of the Community Engagement and Development Specialist is to serve as an effective communication and engagement conduit between the City of Oak Park and its community members, including residents, the business community, community stakeholders, and the media. He or she creates a streamlined process that opens and invites lines of communication and interaction through the creation, development, implementation, and evaluation of community engagement initiatives. Objectives of the Community Engagement and Development Specialist include:

  • Strengthen the City’s brand.
  • Effectively manage and maximize the quality of the City’s existing communications.
  • Increase engagement, support, and participation in City initiatives, programs, services, and activities.
  • Help the City earn favorable and supportive media coverage.
  • Help the City earn exceptional customer service ratings in providing communication support.
  • Serve in a supplementary role in community and economic development matters.

The Community Engagement and Development Specialist uses effective community engagement principles and practices to:

  • Inform the public – Gain awareness, interest, and knowledge of the City’s programs, activities, and services through the efficient dissemination of information that is accurate, relevant, easy to understand, appealing, timely, and appropriate. The ultimate goal is to foster an informed, supportive, and knowledgeable public.
  • Encourage engagement and participation – Seek to open dialogue, create communication networks, and build relationships with the community. The ultimate goal is to create greater involvement and improved two-way communication between the City and its constituency that not only builds more support for government policy, process, and initiatives, but builds more supportive service to the community at large.
  • Mobilize resources – Increase participation, volunteerism, sponsorship, and support through individuals and businesses that wish to become more active in the City’s initiatives, economic development, boards and commissions, events, activities, and sponsorships.

Community Engagement and Development Specialist uses communication tools, opens networks, and builds relationships through five community engagement channels:

  • Print, Production, and Publication – Produces and disseminates print materials such as the City’s annual report, calendar, newsletter, flyers, Community Resource Guide, and Resident Handbooks.
  • Online Production – Manages, builds, and promotes the City’s web content, online communications, social media communities, and marquee announcements.
  • Media Relations – Builds relationships with the media, serves as frontline triage for media inquiries and crisis communications, and disseminates press materials.
  • Community Relations – Actively participates in the planning, promotion, and implementation of City initiatives, programs, services, and events.