For Immediate Release: December 18, 2019

Contacts: Office of the Governor: Alena Yarmosky, Alena.Yarmosky@governor.virginia.gov

Developed together with Virginia Tech, program aims to prepare next generation of state government leaders

RICHMOND—You still have time to apply to participate in the third Virginia Management Fellows (VMF) cohort, Governor Ralph Northam said today.

The Commonwealth developed the management-training program in partnership with Virginia Tech’s School of Public and International Affairs to meet the state’s succession planning goals for future leaders. The program is unique in the country. Applications are now due Sunday, December 22. Click here to apply.

“Virginia is building a pipeline of future leaders through the Virginia Management Fellows,” said Governor Northam. “I see the contributions our 22 current Fellows are making to our Commonwealth already, and we are creating more opportunities for people to become future leaders in state government. The Fellows program does this by providing technical skill development, general leadership and management training, and the opportunity to work with supportive mentors in state agencies.”

The General Assembly approved the learning program, salary, and benefit structure of the VMF. The program is designed to address the needs for leadership and management in all branches of state government as current employees begin to retire. Forty-two percent of general managers, 39 percent of financial managers, and 30 percent of compliance and safety officers will be eligible for retirement within the next five years, according to recent state data.

“The VMF program works,” said Secretary of Finance Aubrey Layne. “Our first cohort is wrapping up in January, and more than half of the Fellows are already hired into state agency jobs. The training is top-notch and the state agency mentors provide the support and experience that our future leaders will need. Right now, 25 agencies are supporting the VMF program, with more onboarding to meet the growing demand of the program. The VMF program and this concept of current leaders preparing the Commonwealth’s next leaders is one of a kind in the United States.”

Deputy Secretary of Finance June Jennings leads the program, working with finance colleagues, state agencies, executive cabinet members, legislators, and faculty members from Virginia Tech’s School of Public and International Affairs (SPIA).

“The third cohort signals the value that state agencies place on the Fellows program,” said Deputy Secretary June Jennings. “Each cohort develops a network of future leaders who have various skills, interests, and abilities. The cohort concept helps break down operational silos, creating coalitions of future leaders in our Commonwealth. It’s clear that members of the General Assembly value the program and call on Fellows for research. We look forward to seeing all the great things that Cohort 3 will do for the people of Virginia.”

Fellows are employed in a two-year salaried and benefited position. At the end of the fellowship period, Fellows will be able to apply for high-demand positions within state government. The VMF program offers career placement advisement for state agency roles, post-fellowship.

“Virginia Tech’s School of Public and International Affairs faculty designed the Fellows program in partnership with the Governor’s office,” said Leisha LaRiviere, Associate Director of SPIA at Virginia Tech’s Richmond campus and VMF Director. “Faculty lead the training and educational components of the program, dedicated to the development of public service leadership.”

A new component of the VMF program is the service-learning initiative. Fellows work on a public-private partnership with a social purpose, designing, funding, and implementing a project in support of a community group or program in need. This adds to the technical skill and generalist leadership training, putting the Fellows’ new knowledge to work and signaling the value of public service through volunteerism.

The program features four major learning components: customer service; operations; legislation, regulation, and compliance; and analytics. Each fellow is assigned to and embedded within a state agency for a rotation around these learning areas. A special feature of the rotation is the support and guidance of a mentor-leader.

VMF program applicants must have graduated on or after May 2017 from an accredited institution with a Bachelor’s degree or demonstrate proof of a May 2020 graduation date. Master’s, JD, or PhD degree holders, who completed their studies after May 2017 or those who are currently enrolled as students in degree-seeking graduate-level programs, are eligible.

In addition to the agency rotations and mentor training, Fellows will research, study, and understand public administration theories and processes through seminars and lectures designed specifically for the Commonwealth. Fellows learn public administration management and leadership theory and practice in a leadership development program certificate earned across the two-year fellowship program. The educational elements of the program are designed, researched, tested, and implemented by faculty from the School of Public and International Affairs in Virginia Tech’s College of Architecture and Urban Studies.

Click here to apply. The deadline to complete the online application is Sunday, December 22, 2019.

To learn more about the Fellows program, visit vmf.spia.vt.edu or contact Leisha LaRiviere, at llariviere@vt.edu.

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Governor Northam Launches Application for Second Cohort of Virginia Management Fellows

~Developed in conjunction with Virginia Tech, program aimed at preparing next generation of government leaders~

For Immediate Release: November 26, 2018
Contacts: Office of the Governor: Ofirah Yheskel, Ofirah.Yheskel@governor.virginia.gov | Office of the Secretary of Finance: June Jennings, Deputy Secretary of Finance, June.Jennings@governor.virginia.gov

RICHMOND—Governor Ralph Northam today announced the application launch for the second Virginia Management Fellows (VMF) cohort. The program is an initiative of the Commonwealth of Virginia developed in partnership with Virginia Tech to meet the state’s needs for future leaders. Recent (or May 2019) undergraduate, Master’s, or Ph.D. graduates who are dedicated to serving the citizens of Virginia are eligible to apply.

“Today, I am pleased to announce that applications for the second class of Virginia Management Fellows are now open,” said Governor Northam. “Virginia is fortunate to have a smart and dedicated state workforce that is recognized for its excellence across the nation, and we are committed to cultivating the next generation of public servants to grow our leadership capacity. Knowing the strengths of the current Virginia Management Fellows, I look forward to the many contributions that this second cohort will bring to the Commonwealth as they work, learn, and serve during their fellowship.”

The General Assembly approved the learning program, salary, and benefit structure of the VMF. The program aims to create a succession pipeline for leadership and management jobs in all branches of state government that will be in high demand as current employees begin to retire. According to recent data from the Commonwealth, 42 percent of general managers, 39 percent of financial managers, and 30 percent of compliance and safety officers will be eligible for retirement within the next five years.

“The VMF program is comprehensive in its approach,” said Secretary of Finance Aubrey Layne. “A general concept of the VMF is future leaders learning from current leaders. We have a great roster of agencies participating in this program who deploy multiple leaders to support and encourage the professional growth of our Fellows.”

The program’s state liaison, Deputy Secretary of Finance June Jennings, works with finance colleagues, state agencies, executive cabinet members, legislators, and faculty members from Virginia Tech’s School of Public and International Affairs in support of the program implementation.

“This second cohort of the VMF program is an important next step in Virginia’s efforts to develop management and leadership talent,” said Deputy Secretary June Jennings. “The contributions, energy, research and direct service of the current VMF demonstrate the value of investment in these next-generation leaders who are learning and getting things done for the state.”

Fellows are employed in a two-year leadership and management development certificate program with a cutting-edge approach to state leadership learning. The position includes salary and full benefits. At the end of the fellowship period, fellows will be able to apply for high-demand positions within state government.

“Virginia Tech’s School of Public and International Affairs (SPIA) is honored to be a partner in this innovative program to develop public service leadership for the Commonwealth through hands-on learning, coursework, mentoring, outstanding faculty, and more,” said Leisha LaRiviere, associate director for the School of Public and International Affairs at Virginia Tech (Richmond campus).

The program features four major learning components: customer service; operations; legislation, regulation, and compliance; and analytics. Each fellow is assigned to and embedded within a state agency for a rotation around these learning areas. A special feature of the rotation is the support and guidance of a mentor-leader.

Participating agencies include Virginia’s Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, Department of Conservation and Recreation, Department of Criminal Justice Services, Virginia Department of Health, Department of Human Resources Management, Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission, Department of Motor Vehicles, Department of Planning and Budget, Department of Taxation, Department of the Treasury, Senate Finance Committee, State Corporation Commission, State Council of Higher Education in Virginia, and the Virginia Retirement System.

In addition to the agency rotations and mentor training, Virginia Management Fellows will research, study, and understand public administration theories and processes through seminars and lectures designed specifically for the Commonwealth. Fellows learn public administration management and leadership theory and practice in a leadership development program certificate earned across the two-year fellowship program. The educational elements of the program are designed, researched, tested, and implemented by faculty from the School of Public and International Affairs in Virginia Tech’s College of Architecture and Urban Studies.

The Virginia Management Fellows application can be found here. The deadline to complete the online application is December 7, 2018.

To learn more about the Fellows program, visit https://vmf.spia.vt.edu/ or contact Leisha LaRiviere, director of the VMF program and associate director of SPIA on the Richmond campus, at llariviere@vt.edu.

Governor McAuliffe Announces New Virginia Management Fellows

~Program prepares next generation of government leaders; developed in conjunction with Virginia Tech~

From L-R: Deputy Secretary of Finance June Jennings, VMF Program Director Leisha LaRiviere, Governor Terry McAulliffe, Policy Director, Office of the Governor Jennie O’Holleran, and Secretary of Finance Ric Brown

For Immediate Release: January 11, 2018
Contacts: Office of the Governor: Brian Coy, (804) 225-4260, Brian.Coy@governor.virginia.gov
RICHMOND – Governor Terry McAuliffe today announced the inaugural cohort of the Virginia Management Fellows program. The program is an initiative of the Commonwealth of Virginia developed with Virginia Tech to meet the state’s needs for future leaders.
“I am pleased to introduce the eleven new Virginia Management Fellows to the Commonwealth today,” said Governor McAuliffe. “Virginia is fortunate to have these talented and dedicated Fellows serve in continuance of our success building the new Virginia economy. I look forward to seeing this first class of fellows work with their agencies, mentors, and professors to grow into leaders who will share their talents and new skills to help ensure Virginia’s strong future.”

The General Assembly approved the learning program, salary, and benefit structure of the VMF. The program’s principal leader, Secretary of Finance Ric Brown, worked with finance colleagues, executive cabinet members, legislators, and faculty members from Virginia Tech’s School of Public and International Affairs to design a comprehensive learning program for the new fellows.

“Over my career in state government I have seen the need for strong succession planning in state government. The VMF program successfully addresses this concern through the development of next-generation leaders,” said Secretary of Finance Ric Brown. “At the end of the 2-year program period, these fellows will enter government leadership roles uniquely qualified to tackle the ‘bigger picture’ issues and practical challenges of state strategic management and leadership. Deputy Secretary of Finance, June Jennings, has been a critical partner in readying the state infrastructure in preparation for arrival of the Fellows today.”

The VMF program aims to create a succession pipeline for leadership and management jobs in all branches of state government that will be in high demand as current employees begin to retire. According to recent data from the Commonwealth, 42 percent of general managers, 39 percent of financial managers, and 30 percent of compliance and safety officers will be eligible for retirement within the next five years.

“The School of Public and International Affairs (SPIA) at Virginia Tech is honored to work with the Governor’s Office, Finance Secretariat and state leaders in the development and implementation of the VMF program benefiting this Fellows cohort, and future cohorts. The design of the program is both cutting-edge and thoughtful in its approach,” said Associate Director of SPIA and VMF Director, Leisha LaRiviere.

The VMF program features four major learning components: customer service; operations; legislation, regulation, and compliance; and analytics. Each fellow is assigned to and embedded within a state agency for a rotation around these learning areas. A special feature of the rotation is the support and guidance of a mentor-leader in each agency supporting a fellow.

In addition to the agency rotations and mentor training, Virginia Management Fellows will research, study, and understand public administration theories and processes in seminars and lectures designed specifically for the Commonwealth. The fellows learn public administration management and leadership theory and practice via a leadership development program certificate earned across the two-year fellowship program. The educational elements of the program are designed, researched, tested, and implemented by faculty from the School of Public and International Affairs in Virginia Tech’s College of Architecture and Urban Studies.

Participating agencies include the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Department of Criminal Justice Services, Virginia Criminal Sentencing Commission, Virginia Department of Health, House Appropriations Committee, Department of Human Resources Management, Department of Motor Vehicles, Department of Planning and Budget, Senate Finance Committee, State Council of Higher Education in Virginia, State Corporation Commission, Virginia Retirement System, Department of Taxation, and Department of the Treasury.

Twenty-two state agency leaders participated in the multi-tiered process to select the Fellows.

Below is a list of the new Virginia Management Fellows:

  • Jordan Burns, with a Master’s in political science from James Madison University and a Bachelor’s from Virginia Tech
  • Nathan Conquest, with a Bachelor’s in Public Policy and Leadership from the University of Virginia
  • Mary Feamster,  with a Master’s in Counseling from Appalachian State University and a Bachelor’s from the University of Virginia
  • Jacoby Harper, with a Master’s in Public Administration from Virginia Commonwealth University and a Bachelor’s from Virginia State University
  • Bernadette LeMasters, with a Master’s in Environmental Science and Policy from George Mason University and a Bachelor’s from Virginia Commonwealth University
  • Taylor Melton, with a Bachelor’s in Political Science from Virginia Commonwealth University
  • Conor O’Donnell, with a Bachelor’s in Environmental Policy and International Relations from The College of William & Mary
  • Laura Pearson, with a Bachelor’s in the History of Science, Medicine, and Public Health from Yale University
  • Travis Rickman, with a Bachelor’s in Political Science from Old Dominion University
  • Tyler Williams, with a Master’s in Public Policy from the University of Virginia and a Bachelor’s from University of Virginia
  • Connor Winstead, with a Master’s of Public Administration from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and a Bachelor’s from Hampden-Sydney College

ANNOUNCING THE VIRGINIA MANAGEMENT FELLOWS PROGRAM:

From L-R: Deputy Secretary of Finance June Jennings, VMF Program Director Leisha LaRiviere, Governor Terry McAulliffe, Policy Director, Office of the Governor Jennie O’Holleran, and Secretary of Finance Ric Brown