Patience Ferguson is a exceptional HR executive with the City of Minneapolis. She is the speaker this Friday at the Good Leadership Breakfast.
How do organizations thrive? Patience Ferguson knows. She’s the Chief Human Resources Officer of the City of Minneapolis. If you attend the Good Leadership Breakfast this week, you will understand what makes the City of Lakes thrive. Will you join us?
“Our leadership philosophy at the City of Minneapolis bubbled up from our collective family values, and the values we all want in our neighborhoods,” Patience explained to me. “It comes from the positive role models we’ve seen in our families, our churches, our schools and the hundreds of businesses that make this city great. I love my work!”
I first met Patience Ferguson when she participated in the Good Leadership Conference our firm produced in 2012. Her charisma and clarity of purpose made a strong, lasting impression on me.
Patience grew up in a working class neighborhood in Oklahoma City. It was a strong, predominantly African American community thriving with arts and good schools – during the heights of the Civil Rights movement. “My life was formed in a high achieving culture, where we were held accountable for actions and behaviors by the people who lived around us,” she said with pride.
Like many good leaders we know, her strongest role models were her parents. Her mother was a high school drop out who went to work in a uniform, with white shoes to clean wealthy people’s homes. Her father was a minister and a cab driver. “What really formed me was watching my mom & dad live a good life in the face of disparities. We had stability in our own family, but as we watched the neighborhood change, we shopped in neighborhoods outside of our community to get better food. And my parents moved me at age 13 to a school system that was better for me. They helped me see that my life could be different – that I had possibilities beyond what I saw in the eyes of the kids around me,” she reflected.