Wynndee Lee
Director of Community Development, City of Ottawa, Kansas

Wynndee Lee is the Director of Community Development for the City of Ottawa, Kansas, a position she has held since 2002. She oversees the planning, zoning, development, and codes administration for the city, as well as many community projects including park and playground improvements, economic development, and grants for sidewalks and trails. With the city manager she co-leads a mindfulness practice group at City Hall in which city department directors and other employees participate during the lunch hour.

If a Mindful City Can Be Cultivated Here, It Can Be Done Anywhere
Saturday, May 2, 2020 — 3:00 PM to 4:00 PM

This is the how-to of becoming a mindful city in one of the least likely places — a rural, blue collar, socially conservative, red state, Kansas small town. If it can be done here, it can be done anywhere. Each month, the top leaders in the community — the city manager and the CEOs of the hospital, mental health centre, and chamber of commerce, plus a mindfulness teacher, meet to work on cultivating mindfulness in the community. In the last 3 years, 1% of the population has been trained in 8-week MBSR courses, and another 1% has been trained in mindfulness through the mental health centre. The hospital subsidizes training for community members. Employers pay for staff to be trained. Difficulties will be discussed, as well as strategies such as training leaders, cultivating mindfulness champions, having practice groups within organizations, and others.

Participants will come away with:

  • Cultivating mindfulness in leaders spreads it more effectively
  • A threshold effect can be reached within organizations when a certain number of members are practicing mindfulness
  • Contemplating challenges from a state of mindfulness can lead to creative solutions