Press Releases

CEO's Leadership Development Plan Reaches Milestone

County Executive Office - Press Release

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