Insight News

Feb 09th

Representative Rena Moran awarded fellowship to Midwestern leadership institute

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State Representative Rena Moran (DFL – St. Paul) was among 37 select lawmakers chosen to participate in a training program that annually identifies and assists promising state leaders in the Midwest.

Representative Moran will meet with fellow lawmakers from Minnesota and 10 other Midwestern states and the Canadian provinces of Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan on August 12-16, in Madison, Wis., for The Council of State Governments’ 17th annual Bowhay Institute for Legislative Leadership Development (BILLD).
“The Bowhay Institute is one of the premier leadership training programs in the nation,” says Illinois Rep. Elaine Nekritz, who serves as co-chair of the institute’s steering committee. “The legislatures in the region have benefited greatly from the skills their members have gained through this unique educational experience. Many of the graduates now hold leadership positions in their states.”

“I’m honored to have been selected to participate in this program,” Rep. Moran said. “I look forward to bringing lessons learned during this experience back to Minnesota in an effort to serve my constituents even more effectively.”

Rep. Moran just recently completed her first session in the Minnesota House of Representatives. Rep. Moran had legislation passed that allows school boards to adopt a "full-service school zone for a school in an area with higher than average crime or other socioeconomic challenges that provides education, health, human services, and other parental support in collaboration with city, county, state, or nonprofit agencies.  Most importantly, the legislation allows the district to provide student with transportation to attend the school. 
Dayton's Bluff Elementary in St. Paul is a school that provides services in collaboration with other entities to students and their families, and they're getting great student achievement results.  Unfortunately, some families chose not to attend the school because their kids would have had to walk through an area that they considered perhaps unsafe.  The legislation will make Dayton's Bluff an option for more students and other districts can use this option if they desire.

“Improving our public school system and helping close the achievement gap are among my top priorities as a state legislator,” Rep. Moran said. “A ‘full-service school zone’ is a common-sense reform that will help our schools and our students.”

“I’m looking forward to building on this achievement, gaining legislative leadership skills in this training program and enacting more smart reforms for my constituents in the future.”

Since 1995, 550 lawmakers have graduated from the Bowhay Institute. State legislators from Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin are chosen to participate through a competitive, nonpartisan selection process.  Members of the Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan legislative assemblies are selected by their caucuses to take part in the program.

BILLD was founded in 1995 to help new legislators meet the demands of program devolution and, in many states, term limits.  These two emerging forces highlight the shortage of training available for legislators, a void that BILLD aims to fill.

A program of The Council of State Governments’ Midwestern Office, BILLD is held in partnership with the University of Wisconsin’s Robert M. La Follette School of Public Affairs. Courses and seminars are conducted by La Follette faculty, Midwestern legislative leaders and professional development experts. In addition to courses designed to develop leadership skills, the program analyzes a variety of public policy issues, including the economy, economic development and corrections.

Founded in 1933, The Council of State Governments has national headquarters in Lexington, Ky., and regional offices in Atlanta, Chicago (Lombard, Ill.), New York City and Sacramento. The goal of the national, nonpartisan organization is to assist and advance state government by providing research assistance, professional development opportunities, interstate consulting services and suggested state legislation.


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