2020 Helen & Alan Berg Good Governance Award Nominees

Philomath - Citizens Academy

2020-10-13 17_35_49-Philomath Citizens Academy _ Uploaded Photos _ gazettetimes.com.pdf - Adobe Acro.pngPhilomath Citizens' Academy was formed in response to the lack of applicants and candidates for Budget Committee, Planning Commission, Park Board and even City Council. In the 2016 election, only the incumbent mayor, four incumbent councilors and two new councilor candidates ran for office - all unopposed. The City began offering its eight-session Citizens' Academy in 2017. Sessions were held every other week in the evenings, and covered a range of topics such as City Management and Organization Police and Municipal Court, City Infrastructure, City Finance and Budgeting. The Academy also induded sessions presented from community partners such as the School District, Library, and Fire District. The final session included presentations from the various service organizations, with an invitation to looks for ways to serve within the community.

The Academy format remained consistent through the 2018 and 2019 seasons, and the results The have been staggering! In 2017, there were 20 participants, 8 of which were recognized for graduating the Academy with 90% attendance or better. In 2018, there were 14 attendees and 7 graduates, and in 2019, the Academy had 17 participants and 12 graduates. In total, that's 51 participants and 27 graduates over just three years. More importantly, of those 51 participants, 21 have gone on to apply for appointed or elected positions since 2017. In the upcoming general election, Philomath voters will have 2 mayoral candidates and 12 city council candidates to choose from half of which are Philomath Citizens' Academy participants! What a difference from four years ago.

Learn more about the Philomath Citizens' Academy