Commencement Speaker

How can public leaders generate change effectively and collegially?

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At the Tommy G. Thompson Center on Public Leadership, our primary goal is to determine how we can produce and facilitate effective public leadership.

Our Mission

Wis. Stat. § 36.68 declares that the mission of the Tommy G. Thompson Center on Public Leadership shall be the facilitation of research, teaching, outreach, and needed policy reforms regarding effective public leadership that improves the practice of American government.”

Our Pledge

The Tommy G. Thompson Center on Public Leadership provides a multi-disciplinary, non-partisan environment to study, discuss, and improve leadership.  Students, faculty members, policymakers, and other relevant stakeholders come together to share knowledge and learn about successful public leadership.  We pledge to pursue leadership, to foster collegiality, and to be problem-solvers.

The Thompson Center will:

Study, discuss, and improve public leadership;
Generate well-researched policy;
Strive to ensure a balance of political and ideological perspectives;
Address major leadership and policy needs in Wisconsin consistent with Governor Thompson’s legacy; and
Seek to enhance collegiality and bipartisanship in government.

Focus Topics

Every academic year the Tommy G. Thompson Center selects key policy topics to focus special attention on in conjunction with its overall mission to promote public leadership and good governance in Wisconsin.  By funding insightful research and putting together engaging public events we hope to elevate discussion of these topics and provide the needed opportunities to civilly discuss ideas and solutions. By shining a spotlight on these areas we are doing our own small part to continue moving Wisconsin forward.

For this year we have selected the following:

Improving Independence for Wisconsin’s Disabled Population – How policymakers can assist Wisconsin’s disabled population to become increasingly independent and self-sufficient?  The Thompson Center will be funding research proposals and speakers devoted to this topic.  In doing so the Center is looking to identify effective ways to assist those with physical or cognitive disabilities to enter the work force, to pursue education, and to otherwise to improve their lives through greater independence and self-sufficiency.

Wisconsin’s Role Biomedical Research – How can Wisconsin develop new frontiers in biomedical research? What opportunities and obstacles exist for Wisconsin to continue as a powerhouse in biomedical technology?  The Thompson Center aims to determine how Wisconsin’s policymakers can continue to work with the University of Wisconsin and Wisconsin’s private sector to make the badger state the preeminent location for biomedical research and investment.

Wisconsin’s Energy Future – What kinds of technologies are particularly useful for Wisconsin? What homegrown advancements will lead the way toward our energy revolution?  Many Wisconsinites demand an energy policy that is increasingly self-sufficient and cleaner. Battery powered cars can supplement many gas-powered vehicles. Solar and wind power provide reasonable alternatives for businesses and residential customers. Methane produced from cows fuels thousands of Wisconsin homes already. Costs are down dramatically, with equally dramatic returns on investment. For many businesses, renewable sources make more sense. The Thompson Center seeks faculty research and speakers to examine how our leaders can cultivate these energy sources.