The Carl Vinson Institute of Government at the University of Georgia recently published a report entitled Local Governments and School Systems Partnering for Better Communities. That report, distributed statewide, includes case studies of successful collaboration from around the state with several references to the Newton County Collaborative and The Center for Community Preservation. This is a must read for leaders and others concerned about the future of their community. It can be downloaded from the UGA website: .cviog.uga.edu/publications/cgs/.
UGA’s Public Service and Outreach program joined with the Carl Vinson Institute of Government in introducing the report “We hope that through this research Georgia leaders can overcome some of the legal, structural, and systemic hurdles that hinder collaboration, allowing them to create opportunities to improve their own organizations and communities through new partnerships and new approaches to leadership.”
Newton County was chosen for this study because of several factors. A decade ago it was one of the fastest growing counties in the nation and almost as rapidly became one of the most stressed counties in America. Read the UGA report about what took place in Newton County and how those that placed the future of their community ahead of their personal goals stepped forward and provided true leadership.
Agreements were not always unanimous and adjustments were needed as everyone learned what did or did not work. But the key was the willingness to listen and work at making collaboration a reality. That spirit lives today as elected and appointed officials meet with citizen leaders on a regular basis to discuss concerns and plans for the future.
Mayor, City of Oxford
Chairman, Newton County Tomorrow