USC Price School of Public Policy

Legislative staff from across country train in Sacramento

July 23, 2014

LSMI 2014

By Tommy Royston and Paul Danczyk

More than 40 senior-level legislative staff members representing 20 states nationwide learned leadership strategies that focused on highly intensive political environments, as part of the National Conference of State Legislatures’ Legislative Staff Management Institute (LSMI) in Sacramento.

The LSMI – co-directed by Paul Danczyk, director of executive education for the USC Price School of Public Policy in Sacramento, and Steve Boilard, executive director of the Center for California Studies at California State University, Sacramento – was held Jul 12-19.

This year’s program celebrated the 10th anniversary of the partnership between NCSL, CSUS and USC, as well as the 25th year of the LSMI program.

Through engaging instructional techniques including simulations, case-studies and a white-water rafting team-building exercise, participants gained new insights on a variety of leadership topics. Core presentations emphasized organizational culture, collaboration, negotiation, ethics and customer service.

“Executive trainings are critically important to foster good governance in our rapidly changing society,” Danczyk noted.

Since USC Price and CSUS took over management of the program in 2005, 331 legislative staffers from across the United States have taken part in LSMI.

The program received very positive feedback from participants, with 100 percent indicating that they would recommend the training to other legislative staffers.

In addition to funding from the NCSL Foundation for State Legislatures and the Union Pacific Foundation, this program was made possible through the efforts of Tommy Royston, USC Price program administrator, as well as several nationally recognized instructors:

  • Karl Kurtz, Director of the Trust for Representative Democracy, National Conference of State Legislatures
  • Rod Hickman, former California Secretary of Corrections and Rehabilitation, and President, Roderick Q. Hickman and Associates
  • Dave Landis, former Nebraska State Senator, and Director of Urban Development Department, City of Lincoln, NE
  • Hunter Merritt, Water Policy Planner, Army Corps of Engineers
  • Dave Logan, Senior Partner, CultureSync and USC Marshall Professor
  • Peggy Kerns, former minority leader in the Colorado House of Representatives, and Director of the Center for Ethics in Government Staff, National Conference of State Legislatures
  • Ron Gilbert, Professor, Florida International University
  • Jonathan Ball, Utah Legislative Financial Analyst
  • Raul Burciaga, Director, New Mexico Legislative Council Service
  • Mac Taylor, California Legislative Analyst
  • Jan Yamane, Acting Auditor of Hawaii
  • Laree Kiely, President and CEO, The Kiely Group
  • Brian Weberg, Director of Legislative Management, National Conference of State Legislatures
  • Brandon Jackson, Consultant, California State Senate
  • Kathy Dresslar, Chief of Staff for California Senate President Pro Tem Steinberg