WASHINGTON – The United States Department of the Interior’s Office of Insular Affairs (OIA) funds leadership training in the Republic of Palau (Palau), through the Graduate School USA. OIA funded a three-day, high-level training for Palau executive leadership entitled “Innovation: Without Additional Resources” from February 19-21, 2019.
Completed by 72 participants as part of the Graduate School USA’s Pacific Islands Training Initiative (PITI), the session focused on commonly used tools and techniques to improve public-sector performance, and the application of those tools to real-world examples in Palau. The training placed special emphasis on citizen-centric delivery of public services, and streamlining government processes. The participants included ministers, program directors, and bureau chiefs from across Palau.
“The Department of the Interior is proud of the support that we provide to the U.S. Insular Areas,” said U.S. Department of the Interior Assistant Secretary, Insular and International Affairs, Doug Domenech. “The United States is helping to strengthen and build leadership capacity that ultimately contributes to effective governance and stability in the islands and in their respective regions.”
In his welcome to the training participants, Republic of Palau Vice President Raynold B. Oilouch reminded participants of Palau Presidential Proclamation 19-255, which declared 2019 to be the “Year of Innovative Learning and Excellence”. The Proclamation encourages Palauans to “open [their] hearts to new experiences, new approaches, and new solutions in [their] lives, families, businesses, culture, and government.” Vice President Oilouch also thanked the U.S. Department of the Interior and the Graduate School USA for the continued support they provide to Palau.
Brian Elms, author of Peak Performance and former Director of the Denver Peak Academy, provided the training. Brian specializes in government innovation with more than fifteen years of experience providing program management expertise to government agencies, elected officials, trade associations, and non-profit organizations. Since its inception in 2012, Peak Academy initiatives have saved the city and county of Denver more than $30 million and have provided training to more than 7,000 public and nonprofit professionals. Brian began working with the Insular Area governments in late 2017 at the Island Government Finance Officers’ Association (IGFOA) Winter Conference.
The innovation training provided in Palau is part of a larger Pacific & Virgin Islands Training Initiatives (PITI-VITI) program, a capacity building initiative funded through the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Office of Insular Affairs Technical Assistance Program to build leadership capacity, strengthen financial accountability, and support strong fiscal planning in the U.S. territories and freely associated states. More information on the program may be found on the PITI-VITI website.
The Assistant Secretary, Insular and International Affairs, and the Office of Insular Affairs carry out the Secretary of the Interior’s responsibilities for the U.S. territories of American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Additionally, OIA administers and oversees federal assistance under the Compacts of Free Association to the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Palau.