Greetings. Welcome to the inaugural Arizona Legislative Academy.

Congratulations on your recent election to serve in the 53rd Arizona Legislature. As you know, it’s a great honor that comes with great responsibility. The people of Arizona have entrusted you to represent them, and in turn you will repay that trust by doing everything you can in your power to ensure our state continues to thrive today, tomorrow and generations to come.

That’s what the Arizona Legislative Academy is all about: to help you succeed in public service by helping you better understand your role as a legislator, as well as provide a greater grasp of the myriad of public-policy issues, challenges and opportunities you’ll soon face.

As a former Speaker of the House and former Representative of Legislative District 1, (as well as current elected member of the Arizona Corporation Commission), I can attest to the importance of having reliable and credible information about public-policy issues when casting a vote or a course of action.

It wasn’t that long ago when I was sitting in your chair  – coming into the state Legislature in 2006 as an enthusiastic freshman, excited about getting to work although somewhat anxious over what exactly that means in terms of role, responsibility, expectation, process and the overall dynamics of state government. I only wish there was an Arizona Legislative Academy at that time.

This new program is built with you in mind. It’s a pragmatic and informative “get to the point” forum intended for practical application. The Academy is facilitated with Legislative Leadership and Arizona State University Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions and Morrison Institute for Public Policy, along with the University of Arizona and Northern Arizona University. As you can tell by the agenda and list of speakers, we have assembled a wealth of experience and expertise on key matters you’ll need to know to help you hit the ground running immediately after being sworn into office.

We are excited about the program and we are thankful for your participation. We believe you will find the Academy a worthy use of your valuable time. This being the inaugural program, we welcome your input for improvement or enhancement for future programs.

So again, my congratulations – and welcome to the first class of the Arizona Legislature Academy.

Andy Tobin, Director
Arizona Legislative Academy