The Academy for Good Governance

Build Your Leadership Skills at The Academy for Good Governance!

Next cohort set for September, 2024

The Academy for Good Governance is a series of seven courses created by NHMA and Primex, exclusively for elected governing body members (select board, town council, city council, board of aldermen, school board, and village district commissioners). Courses are taught by experienced attorneys and staff from NHMA, Primex, HealthTrust, and the New Hampshire School Boards Association (NHSBA).

Attendees will receive education and training intended to make them more knowledgeable and effective in their governing body roles.

Attendance at the Academy is free and open to governing body members from municipalities and school districts that are members of NHMA, Primex and NHSBA. Attendees must attend all seven courses to receive a Certificate of Completion. All classes will be provided by Zoom and run 5:00 pm—7:00 pm. with classes in September and October.


Governing Body Roles & Responsibilities

Good governance starts with understanding the roles and responsibilities of the governing body. In this kickoff session, attendees will learn what governing body members can and cannot do and the extent of their authority. The presenters will review the most important statutes applicable to governing body members for both towns and schools, with some time spent discussing the differences between them.

Financial Responsibilities

This session will explain the fundamental concepts of governmental budgeting, finance, and taxation. Statutory financial duties of the governing body will be addressed, including relationships with other elected officials, importance of internal controls, and measures to help mitigate the opportunity for fraudulent activities to occur in your municipality or school district.

How to Run an Effective Meeting (an Comply with the Right-to-Know Law)
An effective public meeting requires knowledge of the Right-to-Know Law, an appreciation for the First Amendment, tact, poise and a healthy dose of humor and humility. This session will cover all those topics and more.

Understanding Employee Benefits
This session will provide elected officials with an overview of employee health benefits focusing on cost saving strategies while providing comprehensive coverage for employees and their families.

Preventing Discrimination, Retaliation and Workplace Hostility in the Public Sector: The Essential Role of Good Governance
Laws and employee expectations continue to evolve and expand regarding individual rights in the workplace.  Legal conflicts arise when treatment is perceived as falling short of expectations.  The key to avoiding the many costs and impacts of litigation is awareness, commitment and follow-through on basic notions of respect and fairness. Governing boards are uniquely positioned to establish the right policy, lead by example and set the tone. 

Managing Your Public Entity’s Liability Risk
This session explores those risks associated with situations you frequently encounter through managing your daily operations, such as the use of volunteers and use of your public facilities. The goal of this interactive session is to share best practices and preventive measures so that you oversee your operations in an environment that encourages proactive management of risk and overall safety.

Cybersecurity for Elected Officials
How does cybersecurity impact local government?  Can’t we just leave it to the “experts”?  Why does this topic have anything to do with local elected officials?  All these questions and more will be answered during this presentation.  Join us to learn about how you can have a direct impact on your organization’s cybersecurity posture.  We will review the most common cybersecurity threats facing New Hampshire local government as well as practical ways to defend against these threats.  Finally, we will discuss free and low-cost resources you can access. 

For more information, please contact us at or call 603.230.3350.