Vote for the 2018 Sammies People’s Choice award

The Partnership for Public Service proudly presents the Service to America Medals to celebrate the important contributions of our nation’s outstanding federal workforce.

Help choose the federal employee or team you believe has made the most significant contribution to the American people. Voting for the 2018 Sammies People’s Choice award begins Friday, May 11.

Learn more about the 2018 Finalists, 27 individuals and teams who have advanced our nation’s health, safety and prosperity.

New Study Released on Government Workforce of the Future

Today the Volcker Alliance released a study which addresses an important and timely question: “What knowledge and skills will the next generation of public servants need to be effective?” The report, Preparing Tomorrow’s Public Service, presents insights on crucial skills from nearly 1,000 rising government leaders and explores how government’s managerial capacity can keep pace with the scale and complexity of government’s responsibilities. Additionally, the study provides recommendations to government agencies, professional associations, and educational institutions on cultivating the most critical capacities for government service. With nearly one-third of federal career employees eligible for retirement by the end of the decade and similar workforce pressures impacting states and localities, these issues are of growing import.

The rising government managers from the federal, state, and local levels who were surveyed by the Volcker Alliance convey the importance of skills such as motivating teams, perseverance, project management, and oral communication to succeed in public service. “Soft skills” are rated by this cohort of rising government leaders as relatively more important than other “hard skills” such as advanced data analytics.

“Given headlines in recent years about the technical challenges facing government such as the launch of or the data breach of federal background check data, we expected to hear huge demand for technical training from government employees. However, what we found came through most clearly in this study,” said Paul A. Volcker, former chairman of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors and chairman of the Volcker Alliance, “is that public administration is still about people, and communications and management skills are as important as they ever were in implementing policies effectively.”

In Preparing Tomorrow’s Public Service, rising government leaders express a strong commitment to government service and a desire for more networked learning and other professional development opportunities. Of those surveyed, 75 percent report that they intend to continue in government for the long term. Over 50 percent wish they had access to professional development opportunities that were more relevant to them, and 74 percent intend to pursue additional professional development.

Dustin Brown, who leads performance and personnel management as the deputy assistant director for management in the US Office of Management and Budget and was interviewed for the report, said, “I appreciate the Alliance shedding light on this important issue to improve the government’s ability to recruit skills needed to modernize.” He added that the Volcker Alliance’s findings align with his hiring priorities for the federal government. “I’m not looking for ‘just policy’ people but for folks who have the change management skills to work across silos,” Brown said. “For the types of problems government is trying to solve, and the way in which the government is organized, we need managers that can lead implementation efforts across organizations and sectors.”

The Alliance recommends a range of ways that government agencies can invest in and support future public servants, including mentoring and coaching programs, fellowship programs, and employee training opportunities. Preparing Tomorrow’s Public Service highlights some existing programs that are tailored for rising managers as models for other agencies to adopt. The Alliance also recommends that graduate programs consider incorporating more field-based content and offer more post-degree, just-in-time courses and experiences.

Read the report

Read RFG Fellows’ Advisor Mike Schneider’s overview of the report

Public Service Recognition Week: May 6-12, 2018

Honoring Our Public Servants.
Connecting Citizens with Their Government.

Celebrated the first week of May since 1985 (beginning on the first Sunday of the month), Public Service Recognition Week (PSRW) is organized annually by the Public Employees Roundtable (PER)and its member organizations to honor the men and women who serve our nation as federal, state, county and local government employees.

Throughout the country, mayors, governors, agency leaders, communities and public service organizations participate in PSRW by issuing proclamations; hosting award ceremonies and special tribute events; and delivering messages about the value of public service. We encourage government leaders and public servants from all backgrounds to participate by showing appreciation to their employees and colleagues and by sharing stories of excellence in public service.

Upcoming events taking place in Washington, D.C. during PSRW 2018 include the sixth annual Public Service 5K run/walk, Federal Workforce Day at the Washington Nationals, and a congressional breakfast to congratulate the finalists of the Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medals.

Follow @RPublicService on Twitter and help us spread the word using #PSRW. For additional suggestions and resources to participate in Public Service Recognition Week in your agency or community, visit our Celebration Toolkit page. To request email updates about PSRW 2018, contact

To learn more visit the Public Service Recognition Week website.