Richardson’s Assistant City Manager of Administrative Services Michelle Thames ends a more than 21-year career with the City of Richardson today. Thames joined the City in May 1991 as an intern in the City Manager’s Office, and was named to her current position in 1999.
In her role with the City, Thames has administrative responsibilities for Human Resources, the Budget Office, Information Technology, Emergency Management, Communications and the Richardson Public Library. Thames also has administrative oversight of the Charles W. Eisemann Center for Performing Arts & Corporate Presentations, and she also works closely with the community’s arts organizations, serving as the staff liaison to the Richardson Arts Commission.
Last July, Thames announced that after more than 21 years with the City, she was going to step down and take some time off. “It has been extremely rewarding to serve such a terrific community alongside an incredibly talented staff and such dedicated citizens and passionate leaders,” said Thames. “I feel truly blessed to be able to take so many great Richardson experiences with me going forward.”
During her tenure with the City, Thames has successfully helped launch and manage Richardson’s Eisemann Center for Performing Arts and Corporate Presentations - which is celebrating its 10th anniversary this month. She also oversaw the creation of the City’s new Communications Department and has represented the City with a number of civic organizations in the community. Thames is a graduate of Leadership Richardson Class X, Leadership North Texas Class 2, the Citizens Police Academy and the Citizens Fire Academy. She is also a sustainer of the Junior League of Richardson, a former member of Altrusa International of Richardson and a member of the Omicron Theta Chapter of the Chi Omega Alumnae Association.
"Michelle has been an integral part of our organization and this community, and we will greatly miss her and her abilities,” said Richardson City Manager Dan Johnson. “She has helped oversee many projects that have added to our civic pride, and we wish her all the best for her future endeavors.”
Thames earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, Texas, and holds a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Texas at Arlington. She is an active member of the International City/County Management Association, having served on Government Affairs Policy, Assistants and Conference Evaluation Committees. Thames is a member of the North Texas City Management Association and the Texas City Management Association and is a past president of the Urban Management Assistants of North Texas. She is also a graduate of the Senior Executive Institute of the Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service at the University of Virginia.
In addition to her many academic and professional accolades, Thames also serves on the editorial advisory board of Richardson Living magazine and the advisory board of the Warren Center for children with developmental differences. She is also a past president of the Arapaho Classical Magnet PTA, a member of the Richardson Independent School District (RISD) Budget Review Team and a graduate of Inside RISD. She is also a volunteer leader at Prestonwood Baptist Church.
In 2002 Thames was selected as one of the Collin County 21 leaders for the 21st Century by Inside Collin County Business, and in 2006 Altrusa International of Richardson named Thames as Outstanding Woman of the Year in the government category. In 2008 Thames received the Linda Keithley Award for Women in Public Management from the North Central Texas Council of Governments, and in February of this year she received the Ambassador for the Arts award from the Richardson Arts Alliance for her continued support of the arts in the community.
Thames and her husband, Phil, live in Richardson and have two daughters, Sarah and Katie.