CANTON, OH (January 4, 2010) – The Stark County Government Leadership Academy is seeking applicants for its six-week program. The Government Leadership Academy, now in its fifth year, offers elected officials and aspiring candidates leadership development skills and education about local and regional government. Jeff Matthews, chair, The Stark County Republican Party and Randy Gonzalez, chair, Stark County Democratic Party, both recommend the academy elected officials and those considering candidacy. The program will begin Tuesday, Feb. 9.
The academy targets individuals serving in or aspiring for public office who wish to enhance their decision-making and leadership skills. Participation in the program will result in:
  • Greater knowledge about North East Ohio as an economic region
  • Enhanced leadership expertise and decision-making skill
  • Broader networks of elected and appointed officials across political boundary lines
Past participants include:
Ronald Beltz, Hartville Village Council
Nancy Marion, North Canton School Board
Anna Capaldi, Perry Township Trustee
Janet Creighton, former Mayor of Canton and Deputy Assistant to the President
Lawrence Dordea, Alliance City Council
Frank Forchione, Judge, Stark County Court of Common Pleas
Guy Guidone, Louisville City Council
Scott Haws, Plain Township Trustee
David Hersher, Massillon City Council
Steve Meeks, Governor’s Regional Director
David Regula, Bethlehem Township Trustee
Chris Smith, Canton City Council
Cynthia Timberlake, Clerk of Council, City of Canton
The Government Leadership Academy is a program of Leadership Stark County, with support from the Stark County District Library, and is designed to increase the understanding of local government and how it functions. Professor Chet Bowling from The Ohio State University Extension facilitates the curriculum. Participants will meet and work with community leaders, focus on regionalism and assess personal leadership practices.The class takes place Tuesdays and Thursdays Feb. 9 through Mar. 18, meeting from 4 – 6 p.m. Cost is $295 per person and includes all materials and refreshments. Partial tuition assistance is available.
Applications for the Government Leadership Academy are being accepted until Jan. 22 or until space fills. For more information, contact Fran Wells, director, Leadership Stark County, at (330) 458-2094. Applications and more information about the program, including a listing of previous participants is available at