Washoe County Leadership Academy

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What is the Washoe County Leadership Academy?

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Washoe County proudly introduces the inaugural Washoe County Leadership Academy, an 8-month educational and leadership program unlike any other in the community, promoting knowledge of local government and providing leadership training in conjunction with the University of Nevada, Reno Cooperative Extension.  

One day per month, participants will be exposed to various aspects of Washoe County services, from the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office and animal control to a tour of historic Bowers Mansion, and much more. This program pulls back the curtain to local government innerworkings and offers insight into how these leaders and their organizations may become more involved in county government.  

Each class will also complete a community project, putting their newfound skills to work and to better the county.  

Only 25 individuals from across the county will be selected to participate, completely free of charge.  


Why Participate?

The class of 2023 will have the opportunity to increase their professional and personal network with fellow community leaders across the county, while learning how local county government works and what Washoe County does with your tax dollars. Grow your network to benefit yourself and your organization as it spans across the professional spectrum to gain new business and community contacts.  


Application Information

Prior to applying, we encourage applicants to ensure their place of business will support this endeavor by providing sufficient time to participate in this rigorous program. The Washoe County Leadership Academy consists of one full day away from the office each month, for 8 months.  

Application Period: July 05, 2022 – August 01, 2022 

Review Period & Contact Participants Selected: August 05, 2022 

All Applicants will be contacted no later than August 12. 

The program launches September 23, 2022, and will continue through April 14, 2023, culminating with a graduation ceremony attended by Washoe County leadership.  


2022-2023 Dates and Themes

Pulling Back the Curtain: An Introduction to Washoe County will provide a basic understanding of how local county government works, how the various departments of Washoe County intersect, as well as a leadership assessment, training on civic participating and engagement, a visit to the Washoe County Registrar of Voters, the Health District and a tour of the Washoe County Regional Medical Examiner’s office. Today, pParticipants will also have the opportunity to meet their fellow classmates and learn about the community project they will create to enhance the community.

Rural History Day will take participants to parts of Washoe County that are a mystery to many, including the Black Rock Desert, home of the international festival Burning Man, a visit to Gerlach, and the opportunity to meet with native tribe storytellers at Pyramid Lake. No trip to Gerlach would be complete without lunch at Bruno’s Country Club.

Optional: Participants in the Washoe County Leadership Academy will have the opportunity to participate in a separate day trip to Fly Ranch Geyser for a tour.

Law & Order Day introduces participants to the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office and the important role it plays in public safety in both proactive and reactive situations, emergency operations and communications within the County, and a visit to the District Court. Learn more about civility in community and local government.

Optional: Participants in the Washoe County Leadership Academy may participate in a ride-along with the Washoe County Sheriff's Office.

The Heart of the County: Helping the Vulnerable Population highlights the efforts of Washoe County and its citizens to help people young and old, including the Senior Services Center, and transitional housing opportunities in the community. Participants are invited to bring new socks, undergarments and hygiene products to donate during this day, if they wish.

Optional: Participants in the Washoe County Leadership Academy may wish to join in a group volunteer activity at the Food Bank of Northern Nevada.

Leisure & Literature Dday invites participants to take a deeper look at the things that bring Washoe County residents together, from our beautiful libraries to one thing we all love: animals! A visit to the Washoe County Regional Animal Services and the SPCA are in order. You might just walk away with a new best friend!

Dedicated to Public Service Day delves into what makes Washoe County tick. Who clears snow from the roads? Who do you call when you are in trouble and need assistance? What if you want to build on your property, or have a code enforcement complaint? Some of the services provided to constituents are those we rarely notice until they are not in order. Learn about running a smooth county with the many public service departments.

Beautiful Incline Village and Bowers Mansion Regional Park are on deck for Historic Architecture Day. Visit striking Lake Tahoe and take a private tour of the historic Thunderbird Lodge, learn about the Short Term Rental divide, the affordable housing shortage for workforce, and how Washoe County is working to address these issues while embracing growth and tourism. Then, stop by Bowers Manion Regional Park to learn about the Comstock millionaires that made this a welcoming place for all, and the many programs taking place here throughout the spring and summer.

Today marks the culmination of the inaugural class of the Washoe County Leadership Academy! Participants will present their class project, enjoy a celebratory lunch, and receive a plaque to proudly display.

Questions?  Contact the Washoe County Commission Support Team at 775-328-2003 or email commissionersupport@washoecounty.gov.  
Call 311 to find resources, ask questions, and utilize Washoe County services. Learn More »
Call 311 to find resources, ask questions, and utilize Washoe County services. Learn More »