In January, the twelfth Montgomery Citizens’ Leadership Academy (MCLA) session launched. This year, 30 motivated residents are again taking the journey from being a resident to become an actively engaged citizen. The first four sessions featured opportunities to engage and connect.

  • We Are Montgomery! – The opening session conducted at Terwilliger Lodge provided an introduction to the Montgomery Citizens’ Leadership Academy and what to expect over the following nine sessions. This session also serves as a platform to clearly identify “Who’s in the room?” and, “Why it is important that Montgomery’s local elected officials not just govern for the people, but more importantly with the people.”
  • Zen and the Art of Connection – Based on the work of Peter Block, best-selling author and international consultant, this workshop held in the new Davies Community Center at Twin Lakes Senior Living Community covered topics such as the power of a small group, the importance of diversity, the meaning of connection, the influence of place, building community, the essentials of citizen commitment and accountability, and much more.  Brandon Black of “Drawnversation” recorded the conversation with a wall-sized graphic.
  • Montgomery… Our Town, USA – City Council chambers was the site for this session that consisted of an introduction to the structure of Montgomery city government, and the City’s mission, strategic plan, and operating philosophy.  Participants filled the roles of the city council, staff, and concerned residents during a mock City Council meeting. The fictitious scenario of a business relocating out of Montgomery is used to heighten the reality.
  • Taxes, TIF’s and Our Town– Held at Ohio National Financial Services, this session was designed to explain the City’s finances.  City staff explains City revenue and how is it is expended.  They discuss development financing techniques, such as Tax Increment Financing (TIF), and how these tools have factored into Montgomery’s progress.  Class members are then given a budget scenario to solve.

This year’s MCLA class members are greatly enjoying their look behind the scenes of the Montgomery community. If you are interested in joining this highly interactive and nationally recognized program in 2020, or for more information, visit  or contact Ray Kingsbury, director of citizen engagement, 513-792-8359. Space is limited. Applications open on April 1.