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Intentional programming shapes the learning experiences of the Public Democracy Scholars and other Drake students with an interest in politics, community leadership, public service, law, policy, or social change.

National Civility Summit for Local Government: Civility and Effective Leadership

Be the leader your community needs during divisive and difficult times. 

When faced with high-pressure situations or contentious issues, leaders who remain composed, respectful, and empathetic become beacons of stability for the communities they serve. 

As a local government official, elected or appointed, you will face challenges in your leadership journey where stressful situations exacerbate conflict and hinder progress. By being prepared to lead with civility, you can foster a more productive and collaborative environment where your community can thrive.

Join us to learn best practices and to receive resources that will help you inspire trust, promote unity, and create a sense of stability, even when facing the most trying of situations. This program is beneficial for government leaders such as mayors, city council members, administrators, clerks, and chamber officials. 

The best time to be prepared is now - sign up today. 

Wednesday, December 6, 2023  |  10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. (CST)  |  Virtual Event

Register Now



Keynote Speaker: Secretary Tom Vilsack, Secretary of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Agriculture

Keynote Speaker: Clarence E. Anthony, CEO and Executive Director, National League of Cities (NLC)


Tiffany Tauscheck, President and CEO, Greater Des Moines Partnership

Kelley Packer, Executive Director, Association of Idaho Cities

Bob Andeweg, Mayor, City of Urbandale, Iowa

This event is hosted by: 




Civic Leadership Academy for High School Students

During the summer of 2024, Drake University will host the Civic Leadership Academy - an exclusive opportunity for juniors to learn from scholars, policymakers, and thought leaders.

The Academy, being held July 8-11, 2024, immerses 28 high school students in an intensive and rewarding leadership development program that gives students the skills to stand out as student leaders. 

There is no cost to students to attend; meals, lodging, and fun evening activities will be provided. Students will be responsible for their own transportation to and from the Drake University campus in Des Moines, Iowa.

Ron and Jane Olson Center for Public Democracy Summer Institute

Beginning in the summer of 2024, the Ron and Jane Olson Center for Public Democracy will convene an intensive democracy-in-action experience focused on a contemporary issue capturing the public’s imagination. Public Democracy Scholars will work with faculty and staff from within the Center to plan, develop, and implement this signature event (contributing to their Democratic Practice hours). These summer institutes, “Talking Politics, Practicing Democracy,” bring together civic leaders, policymakers, journalists, scientists, activists, scholars, and citizens. The summer institute will also include leadership training for high school students who will actively engage in the institute with summit participants.


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