The City of Fort Worth has selected their first Chief Communications Officer, Reyne Telles. After a thorough national search, Telles has accepted the position and will officially assume this position on June 6.
In his new position, Telles will oversee the city's Communications & Public Engagement Department, Governmental Relations and Educational Strategies Divisions and the City Manager's administrative staff.
Telles has more than two decades of professional experience and, most recently, was vice president and Public Sector Practice leader with Cooksey Communications. Telles guided Cooksey’s governmental clients through in-depth communications audits, institutional planning and execution of engagement approaches that target and reach key stakeholders.
“Fort Worth’s positive vibe is grounded in the community’s vitality, a collective sense of purpose, rich history and genuine authenticity. I hope to carry forward that authenticity by emphasizing ways the City of Fort Worth uses two-way communication to engage, inform and listen to residents,” Telles said. “It is an exciting and dynamic time in the City of Fort Worth, which makes me even more enthusiastic about the possibilities. I appreciate City Manager David Cooke and the vision to create this new role and look forward to joining the team.”
Prior to Cooksey Communications, Telles spent six years as the executive director of communications and community engagement for the Austin Independent School District, where he led marketing, stakeholder and communications efforts that supported 130 schools and 81,000 students. He managed a department of more than 40 employees, which included a Lone Star Emmy-nominated, 24/7 public access television station, as well as the team responsible for the outreach and messaging behind a successful $1.1 billion bond (the largest in Central Texas history by any public sector entity at the time).
Telles also spent six years with the City of Austin, the 11th-largest municipality in the country, as their media relations manager, where he earned recognition multiple times from the Texas Association of Municipal Information Officers for Best Media Relations and Best Social Media. He has also served as the director of communications for Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell, building an executive-level communications plan and securing an appearance for the mayor on "Jimmy Kimmel Live."
In addition to having FEMA-National Incident Management System training and strong Emergency Operations Center experience, he has worked as a political reporter with a CBS affiliate, as a press secretary with the New Mexico Legislature and in nonprofit communications. He received his bachelor’s degree in communication and political science from Eastern New Mexico University and his master’s degree from the Lyndon Baines Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin.