Public sector leaders play an essential role in the economic stability of states and the health and well-being of state residents. These officials are responsible for administering billions of state and federal dollars, setting and managing strategic direction, and navigating the complex web of state government and community relationships. Despite these critical responsibilities, however, there is scant investment in public sector leadership development.

Recognizing the need to better support public sector leaders, three organizations — the Center for Health Care Strategies, the Milbank Memorial Fund, and the National Association of Medicaid Directors — launched the Public Sector Leadership Consortium in late 2019. Collectively, these organizations have provided tailored leadership and capacity building programs to hundreds of public leaders, including state legislators, staff from governors’ offices, and representatives from Medicaid, public health, child welfare, and other health and human services organizations. The Consortium provides an opportunity to maximize each organization’s impact and further collaborate with state agencies to create a culture that supports leadership at all levels in a consistent and strategic way.

The Consortium is committed to developing practical leadership tools and informational resources to help public leaders advance effective health policy and improve health outcomes. Resources developed by the Consortium include:

  • Framework for Public Sector Leadership — This framework, which outlines five domains considered critical for public sector leadership, serves as a guide for rising public sector leaders. It provides a uniform language and approach to strengthening public sector leadership. The framework is based on the assumption that leadership does not necessarily refer to an individual’s position on an organizational chart or hierarchy — that any team member can rise to the occasion as a leader.
  • Leadership Forward Series — This series of blog posts and podcast episodes explores the application of the Framework for Public Sector Leadership. The resources feature conversations with leaders with a wide range of experiences in public sector leadership and include practical examples of successes and challenges.

All three organizations will continue their respective leadership and capacity building efforts in order to support health and human services leaders. As they do so, the organizations will use the framework and other jointly developed resources to establish a consistent approach and language that reinforces opportunities to build leadership across state government.