Choose Framingham had the opportunity to check in with Keziah Franca, the new Citizen Participation Officer (CPO) of the City of Framingham, to hear more about her new role, and her priorities and hopes for the community. Franca is the second CPO in the city of Framingham and was confirmed by the Framingham City Council in mid-February.
1. What is the role of the CPO in Framingham?
I like to think of the Citizen Participation Officer as the bridge between the community and the Mayor’s Office. The Citizen Participation Officer works with City departments, boards, and commissions to engage the public using communication and outreach strategies to enhance public engagement.
2. What drew you to work with the City of Framingham?
I have worked for the City of Framingham for a few years now. Prior to working in the Mayor’s Office, I worked as a Wrap Around Coordinator at Framingham Public Schools. I grew up in this community and I love to give back to the community that helped shape who I am today.
3. What are your current priorities for this role?
Currently, I am focused on filling vacant positions within our various Boards, Committees, and Commissions. In doing so, I am focused on making sure that I outreach to diverse group of residents. Also, I have prioritized making myself available to attend community meetings, meet with a variety of community organizations, and connecting with residents.
4. How do you plan to support the work of the Mayor?
The Mayor has made constituent services a priority. I am always readily available to assist in any way I can, whether it is answering a question, listening to a concern or connecting a resident with appropriate community organization that can support their needs.
5. What new duties or opportunities would you like to explore in your role in your first months on the job?
In this new role, I want to make sure that ALL residents in our community know of the resources they have available to them. I would love to see some sort of resource fair take place, where we can bring all community partners together and connect with those that may not know that those organizations existed.
6. Is there anything else about this role you would like to share with the citizens of Framingham?
I would love residents to just know that I am here. Whether they want to serve on a committee, have any engagement ideas, or just want to introduce themselves. I am here to serve this vibrant, diverse community.