Portland Oregon is large enough to be diverse but small enough to retain its progressive character. In recent years, the mayors have usually been good leaders, and the city commissioners reflect Portland's diversity.
Neighborhood and city planning are well-respected, and the transit system serves the city well. The atmosphere when I worked there was exciting, but because it is a political organization, it was often competitive. Employees are expected both to maintain the city council's directives and to serve the public, so creativity and organizational ability were both required.
Political issues can be challenging