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New public excellence leadership academy developed by OHIO’s Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs


ATHENS, Ohio (Aug. 21, 2018)  – The George V. Voinovich Academy for Excellence in Public Service, recently launched by Ohio University’s Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs, offers a new opportunity for leaders serving in government, public and nonprofit organizations to enhance their skill set.

Jay Johnson, Voinovich Academy director, works with organizations to offer customized training to address the needs of any group. The Academy’s training partners currently include the cities of Dublin and Hilliard, the Ohio Department of Transportation and the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, to name a few. This year’s program was developed in partnership with state agencies and local governments and has 130 participants from six cohorts.

“Universities play a critical role as community anchors, educators and researchers,” Ohio University President M. Duane Nellis said. “Through programming at the George V. Voinovich Academy for Excellence in Public Service, Ohio University aspires to help today’s leaders overcome challenges and seize opportunities. We are so pleased to offer this programming at our Dublin extension campus.”

The Academy is designed to meet participants at their level of experience, whether they are emerging leaders, front-line supervisors, professional or middle management, strategic or executive-level leaders. Most of the training takes place at Ohio University’s Dublin Integrated Education Center by course instructors working in the fields of communications, ethics, political science, education, entrepreneurship, government and nonprofits.

Originally built from the legacy of OHIO’s Executive Leadership Institute, the Voinovich School developed a series of programs that form a “Sphere of Success,” offering participants a variety of paths to follow as they work their way through the available sessions. The “Sphere of Success for Excellence in Public Service” features the art of strategic leadership; talent and leadership development; building a culture and climate for success, operational excellence, innovation, and change that matters; and a new era of communication.

“Today’s public and non-profit leaders are constantly facing complex problems and uncertainty in an ever-changing global environment that cuts across many sectors within their organizations,” Johnson said. “The goal is to develop today’s leaders into tomorrow’s public sector champions. This requires providing our leaders with practical and relevant training, so they can handle crises within their communities and organizations.”

The Academy aims to expand strategic planning capabilities and help participants recognize key partners for the purpose of solving problems and creating value. It encourages emerging leaders to think strategically about their organizations as value-creating entities.

The communication tools provided help participants be more aware of personality differences and put workers together who complement one another’s strengths. It teaches leaders communication styles, problem-solving tools, and how to identify potential risks.

“We want to provide participants with real world instruction, skill sets and tools that they can begin using when they go to work on Monday,” Johnson said.

The Academy also holds biannual open enrollment sessions and offers half- and full-day sessions on the following topics: strategic and organizational leadership, human resources management, public budgeting, organization communication, strategic planning, leadership assessment, crisis management and public strategy development.  

The Voinovich Academy provides the region and state with affordable, accessible programs on current and emerging leadership issues, as well as working in tandem with the School’s campus-based, executive and online MPA programs. Additionally, the Academy helps advance the Voinovich School’s commitment to economic growth, social impact and community leadership, as well as Ohio University’s commitment to the further development of statewide engagement.


Contact:  Jim Sabin, media relations specialist, at 740-593-0858 or  sabin@ohio.edu

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About Ohio University
Ohio University strives to be the best student-centered, transformative learning community in America, where approximately 40,000 students realize their promise, faculty advance knowledge, staff achieve excellence, and alumni become global leaders. OHIO is committed to fostering, embracing, and celebrating diversity in all its forms. Our Athens Campus offers students a residential learning experience in one of the nation’s most picturesque academic settings. Additional campuses and centers serve students across the state, and online programs further advance the University’s commitment to providing educational access and opportunity. Visit  www.ohio.edu for more information.