TOPEKA (KSNT) – The Topeka Mayor Mike Padilla and the current interim city manager Bill Cochran met to discuss what is happening in the city.

Padilla talked about bringing together Shawnee County governing bodies to create beneficial relationships for all communities.

“We pulled together a meeting inviting Shawnee County legislative body at the statehouse — the council members and the mayor from Silverlake and the mayor from Auburn — that’s our region, that’s our Shawnee Country legislative group — and we brought them together to start that conversation and regular communication about how things can come together, how we are in fact looking out for each other. We want to walk away from that competitive attitude, so that ‘if you can’t have it, I can’t have it.’ We really want to make sure that we encourage growth in our region because Topeka will benefit from that as well — as well as Silverlake and Auburn.” 

The need for inclusion was discussed by Cochran who said the city wants to bring in create a diversity officer to understand what is needed. Cochran talked about changing the mindset to help understand what inclusion means.

“One of the things that we are working on is creating a position for a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion officer, and what that individual will do will help move the City of Topeka forward internally in how we become more inclusive and how we train all our employees from top to bottom, and how we change that mindset of what inclusion really means.”