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Mal Watlington '69

Job Title: 
Principal / President

City Square Consulting Inc.

"The UNC MPA program enabled me to transition from individual contributor roles to a succession of management and leadership positions. The support of faculty and colleagues gave me the confidence to move beyond my comfort zone and say 'yes' to challenges that I would have previously thought beyond my experience and capability."

Mal Watlington ’69 worked in local government for six years before spending most of his career in the private sector. After attaining an MPA degree, he served as assistant county manager for Forsyth County then as assistant city manager and, later, as acting city manager for the City of Wilmington. Wilmington, a town emerging from a period of racial strife, served as a proving ground for innovations in citizen participation during the City and Community Development Block Grant budgeting processes.

Starting in 1978, Watlington began a transition to the private sector while directing management and executive programs at the University of Michigan’s Business School. Drawing on public sector experience in organization development, and private sector perspectives and contacts from the business school, he was selected to lead OD, strategic planning and succession planning in a global high technology firm. He took on a succession of progressively responsible roles in executive development, OD and human capital management in global manufacturing companies, and finally transitioned to management consulting leadership in two Big-5 global consulting firms. 

In 2001, he formed City Square Consulting Inc., of which he is principal and president. The firm focuses on “helping clients make decisions that they will be proud of at critical junctures in the life of their organization.” Areas of specialty include human capital strategy, competitive intelligence, business and new venture strategy, sales and manufacturing process improvement, large group strategic change, organization development, career coaching and more.

Watlington earned a BS degree in industrial relations and a Master of Public Administration from UNC-Chapel Hill.

Professional Experience:

Principal/President, City Square Consulting Inc., Charleston, Massachusetts
Associate Partner, Accenture LLP, Boston, Massachusetts
Principal and Managing Associate, CSC Index, Cambridge, Massachusetts
Director, OD and Compensation, Vickers Inc, Maumee, Ohio
Director, Management Resources Planning & Development
and Director, Management Resources, TRINOVA Corporation, Maumee, Ohio
Sales Engineer, CAD/CAM,
Applicon (Schlumberger Ltd), Bellevue, Washington
Manager, Organization Development
and Corporate Development Specialist, Manufacturing Data Systgems Inc. (Schlumberger Ltd), Ann Arbor, Michigan
Program Manager, Division of Management Education
and Administrative Director, The Executive Program, Graduate School of Business Administration, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Acting City Manager
and Assistant City Manager, City of Wilmington, North Carolina
Assistant County Manager, Forsyth County, North Carolina