Aretha R. Ferrell-Benavides
The Duncanville City Council appointed Aretha R. Ferrell-Benavides as City Manager on December 7, 2020.
Aretha R. Ferrell-Benavides comes to Duncanville with nearly 30 years of professional experience at all levels of government. She began her duties as City Manager of Duncanville on February 22, 2021, after previously serving the City of Petersburg, Virginia.
Much of her career has been spent in Washington, DC, where she previously served as the Deputy Secretary of the State for the District of Columbia. Serving under four Mayoral Administrations, she held positions to include Chief Operating Officer for the District of Columbia Department of Parks and Recreation; Chief of Staff for the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Children, Youth, Families, and Elders; and Director for the Office of Neighborhood Action and the Community Empowerment Cluster.
With a true commitment to government, Mrs. Ferrell-Benavides previously served as the Assistant County Administrator for Los Alamos County, New Mexico. In that role, she managed the County’s Intergovernmental Program and Economic Development. For the City of Sunnyvale, California, Mrs. Ferrell-Benavides served as the Assistant to the City Manager, where she oversaw Sunnyvale’s Intergovernmental and Legislative programs.
From 1989 to 1995, Mrs. Ferrell-Benavides worked with the Central Intelligence Agency as an undergraduate intern and later as Graduate Fellow focusing on Soviet Military Issues. Mrs. Ferrell-Benavides held her first local government job with the City of Fort Worth in 1988 as a summer employee.
From 1995 to 1997, she served as the Assistant to the Chief of Staff of the Governor of Maryland. From 1997 to 2002, Mrs. Ferrell-Benavides worked for the City of Chicago as the Deputy Chief of Staff for the Chicago Housing Authority and as Assistant Chief Information Officer for the Department of Business and Information Services.
Currently, Mrs. Ferrell-Benavides serves on several intergovernmental boards to include Riverside Regional Jail Authority (Secretary Treasurer), Crater Youth Correctional Center (Chair), South Central Wastewater Authority (Vice-Chair), Petersburg Area Regional Tourism, Appomattox River Water Authority, and Crater Planning District.
Mrs. Ferrell-Benavides is committed to serving in the field of Public Administration and is a member of the National Forum for Black Public Administrators (NFBPA) and the International City/County Management Association (ICMA). Since 1988, Mrs. Ferrell-Benavides has been a faithful and supportive member of the NFBPA, beginning with serving as the organization’s student representative on the national board of directors and later serving as President of the Chicago Chapter, Vice-President of the Council of Presidents, National Secretary/Treasurer, 2nd Vice-President, 1st Vice-President and ultimately serving as the 17ths National President. Mrs. Ferrell-Benavides is a 1995 Graduate of the NFBPA’s Mentor Program and a 1999 graduate of the Executive Leadership Institute. In 2017, she was awarded the Marks of Excellence Award. The Marks of Excellence Award is bestowed upon an African-American Public Administrator who has achieved extraordinary success in the field of public management. Early in her career, she was awarded the NFBPA Young Public Administrator of the Year Award. This is a nationally competitive award recognizing an administrator, under age 35, who has demonstrated an above-average commitment and success in both the profession and community.
Mrs. Ferrell-Benavides is a Silver Star member of the Delta Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and a Master of Arts in Public Administration from Howard University in Washington, DC. She has also completed the University of Virginia Senior Executive Institute and part of the 2015 Class of Leadership Southwest. Ms. Ferrell-Benavides is married to former Dallas City Manager, Ted Benavides, and has one son Geoffry Alexander who is a student at the University of Kansas.