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Voinovich School History



The Ohio University Board of Trustees created the original organization, the Institute for Local Government Administration and Rural Development (ILGARD). Mark Weinberg was the founder and served as Director since inception. From 1981 to 2007, the organization was part of the College of Arts and Science.


The Rural Universities Program (RUP) is created by the Ohio General Assembly. This program and its metropolitan companion, the Urban Universities Program, serve as major statewide public service programs for the Ohio Board of Regents. Ohio University directs this to funding to ILGARD.


The Ohio University Board of Trustees creates an umbrella center called the Center for Public and Environmental Affairs (CEPA) to house ILGARD and the Environmental Studies program.


The George V. Voinovich Center for Leadership and Public Affairs is established on December 11 in partnership with the College of Business when the Ohio Board of Trustees votes to rename and expand the existing academic center, including an Executive Leadership program and entrepreneurship program.


The Voinovich Undergraduate Research Scholars program is established in is original form as a collaboration between the George V. Voinovich Center and the Honors Tutorial College. The program provides paid, applied research opportunities for undergraduates.


Ohio Governor Taft, the Ohio Board of Regents, and the Ohio General Assembly recognize the opportunity to use Ohio University to implement a new strategy, the Appalachian New Economy Partnership (ANEP), to strengthen the region’s growth and competitiveness in the current and emerging knowledge-based economy.


The George V. Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs is established on April 20, when the OHIO Board of Trustees votes to rename the center. The School becomes the first multidisciplinary school at Ohio University. TechGROWTH Ohio is also established.


In February, Ohio University announces the creation of the Center for Entrepreneurship, a partnership between the Voinovich School and the College of Business, designed to bring entrepreneurial experience to students while supporting the economic growth of the region.

On June 10, a group of 25 Master of Public Administration students become the first students ever to receive degrees from the Voinovich School of Leadership in Public Affairs.


Voinovich School’s first class of Master of Science in Environmental Studies students earn their degrees.


Mark Weinberg, the director of the Voinovich School since its inception, is appointed Founding Dean of the School.


At the Voinovich School’s 10-year anniversary, the School continues to focus on applied research, leadership development, and service to the region, state, nation and world.


The School officially changes its name to the George V. Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Service to best reflect its nationally-recognized leadership among public service schools.


Tracy Plouck is appointed as Dean. Plouck has more than 25 years experience in government and academia, having previously served as Assistant Clinical Professor with OHIO’s College of Health Sciences and Professions; Director of the Ohio Departments of Medicaid and Mental Health and Addiction Services, and as Deputy Director of both the Ohio Office of Budget and Management and the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities.