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Press Release
Orange County Logo COUNTY OF ORANGE

June 17, 2004
Contact: Diane Thomas

CEO’s Leadership Development Plan Reaches Milestone

(Santa Ana, CA) - On June 11, 30 County employees graduated from the Orange County Leadership Academy conducted at Chapman University. County Executive Officer James Ruth initiated the Leadership Academy in January along with other management initiatives and a restructuring of County government.

Ruth selected Chapman University professor, Dr. Mark Maier to create a program designed to “build the bench” and provide a comprehensive and consistent management philosophy, training and development opportunity for our current and future leaders. “Our goal for the Academy was to develop the next level of managers to lead the County into the future,” said Ruth. “This will work hand in hand with succession planning for all County agencies.”

The Academy’s approach differentiates between being a manager and becoming a leader. The course’s foundations are communication, teamwork, collaboration and leadership sharing. It includes discussion and hands-on exercises that bring the theory into workday reality.

Each participant was nominated by their department head to participate in the academy, which began in January. “We approach leadership not just as something we do,” said Maier, “but, more fundamentally, as an expression of who we are.” The Leadership Academy met once a month on the Chapman University campus, and plans are being developed for a second session to begin in September.

The Graduates of the first Leadership Academy class were:

Francisco Alonso, Resources and Development Management Department
Deana Bergquist, Sheriff-Coroner
Jim Buck, OCERS
Patricia Cahill, County Executive Office
Jess Carbajal, Housing and Community Services
Gary Cowan, Treasurer-Tax Collector
Dennis DeMaio, Sheriff-Coroner
Steve Dunivent, County Executive Office
William Feccia, District Attorney
Helen Fried, O.C. Public Library
Jo Ann Galisky, Sheriff-Coroner
Scott Hagen, John Wayne Airport
Reza Khayyami, County Executive Office
Nancy Kolodisner, Child Support Services
Deborah Kwast, Public Defender
Eli Littner, Internal Audit
Roy Lipshin, Social Services Agency
Bill Mahoney, County Executive Office
Vicki Mathews, County Executive Office
Larry McKenney, Resources and Development Management Department
Barbara Mizerek, Child Support Services
Andrew Munoz, Housing and Community Services
Ronald Pierre, Integrated Waste Management
Colleene Preciado, Probation
Renee Ramirez, Clerk-Recorder
Steve Rodermund, Registrar of Voters
Shaun Skelly, Auditor-Controller
David Thiessen, Health Care Agency
John Wheeler, County Executive Office
Vicki Wilson, County Executive Office