Town, Gown, and Beyond: How to Build Stronger University Partnerships

Recorded On: 12/08/2020

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From revenue shortfalls to staff reductions, both universities and local governments face a host of unique challenges in these uncertain times. However, successful partnerships between these institutions have the potential to ease some of the burdens they face in a mutually beneficial arrangement. But how do you go about forming these partnerships, and how do you ensure both parties reap the benefits?

In this webinar, you'll join a panel of speakers from the public and educational sectors as they explore the key elements of effective partnerships between municipalities and universities, the pitfalls to avoid, and the opportunities these relationships can afford. They will cover:

  • How to begin your outreach to a university, whether local or not
  • Communicating and developing mutually supportive projects across different interests and timelines
  • Understanding the ethical and other possible conflicts of interest of university researchers and teachers
  • Moving from small trust-building activities to sustainable integrated commitments 

ICMA Practice Areas: [7] Strategic Planning; [8] Policy Facilitation and Implementation; [9] Community and Resident Service

In recognition of the hard work and selfless service of the local government community during these uniquely challenging times, we are offering a discount on webinar registration rates. Enter the code PSAD2020 during checkout to get $50 off the price of this webinar.

Thomas Bryer

Professor of Public Administration, University of Central Florida

Thomas Bryer, PhD, is professor in the School of Public Administration and director of the Office of Downtown Community-Engaged Scholarship at the University of Central Florida. He is also chief researcher and visiting professor at Kaunas University of Technology (Lithuania), visiting professor at Edge Hill University (England), and a Fulbright Scholar and Specialist with experience Lithuania, Russia, and South Africa. He is the author or editor of six books, including (1) Promoting Civic Health through University-Community Partnerships: Global Contexts and Experiences, (2) Poor Participation: Fighting the Wars on Poverty and Impoverished Citizenship, and (3) Higher Education beyond Job Creation: Universities, Citizenship, and Community.

Tom Fountaine

Borough Manager, State College, PA

Thomas J. Fountaine, II has worked in local government positions for more than forty years.  Since 2003, Tom continues to serve as the Borough Manager for State College, Pennsylvania.  Prior to coming to State College, Mr. Fountaine worked as the Borough Manager of Hollidaysburg, Pennsylvania.  He also worked for the City of Bedford, Indiana and Lawrence County, Indiana. 

Mr. Fountaine is a graduate of Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana.  He served as an adjunct professor at Mount Aloysius College in Cresson from 1992 to 1997, in the Public Administration Department.  He has also been an instructor for the Pennsylvania Municipal Training Partnership, the Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors and the Pennsylvania Department of Community Affairs. 
Mr. Fountaine was elected to a three-year term on the International City/County Management Association Executive Board as Vice President for the Northeast region.  He has also served on several committees with the International City/County Management Association and he was President of the International Town Gown Association in 2012-2013.    He served on the Association of Pennsylvania Municipal Management Executive Committee from 1990 through 1996 and served as President of the Pennsylvania State Association in 1994 to 1995. 

Byron Brooks

County Administrator, Orange County, FL

Appointed by Mayor Jerry L. Demings January 2019, Mr. Brooks serves as the County Administrator. He is responsible for assisting the Mayor in the daily oversight of county operations and services, and successfully executing the policy directives of the Board of County Commissioners. His duties involve administration of an organization with approximately 7,800 employees and an annual budget of over $4.7 billion, serving a community approaching 1.4 million residents, thriving businesses and over 75 million visitors annually.    Prior to his current position with Orange County, Brooks served as Chief Administrative Officer with the City of Orlando; Executive Director of the Central Florida Regional Transportation Authority (LYNX); and, he previously worked with Orange County, Florida Government serving as Deputy County Administrator.

He is currently engaged with transportation initiatives, housing, economic development, public safety, process improvement efforts to enhance customer service and organizational responsiveness, sustainability, and building a stronger and adaptive team.

Brooks received his Master’s degree from Clemson University, and his Bachelor’s degree from Furman University.  He also completed the Program for Senior Executives in State and Local Government at Harvard University, and he completed the Executive Leadership Institute of the National Forum for Black Public Administrators. He holds American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) credentials. 

He has been an adjunct professor and guest lecturer at the University of Central Florida, and has been a keynote speaker, panelist, and presenter on topics related to public administration nationally and internationally. He was inducted into the Clemson University CAAH Hall of Fame in 2017. His community involvement is quite extensive, serving on several professional and non-profit boards and organizations.  

Kim Lane

Executive Director, Pigtown Main Street

Kim began her career 30 years ago starting as a community organizer leading to executive positions in the nonprofit sector. Her experience includes leading asset based community development organizations that included  building workforce, economic equality, substance abuse and reentry programs in partnership with universities. Currently, Kim has returned to a Pigtown, a neighborhood in Southwest Baltimore after leading a community development corporation there several years ago. 


12/08/2020 at 1:00 PM (EST)   |  90 minutes
12/08/2020 at 1:00 PM (EST)   |  90 minutes
Mobile Friendly Webinar
Recorded 12/08/2020
Recorded 12/08/2020
Evaluation Survey
15 Questions
1.50 ICMA CE credits  |  Certificate available
1.50 ICMA CE credits  |  Certificate available