Public Finance Leadership Academy (PFLA)

We are pleased to announce that we are now accepting applications for the inaugural cohort of the Public Finance Leadership Academy (PFLA). For years, the Georgia Government Finance Officers Association and the Carl Vinson Institute of Government have partnered to bring professional development opportunities to finance professionals across the State of Georgia as a means of promoting excellence in public finance.    

The Level I and Level II Finance Officer Certification programs are signature programs that provide foundational knowledge and technical skills in a number of areas that are critical to the financial management of your local government or authority. To that end, we are excited to add a new certificate program that focuses on not only technical skills, but also on leadership skills.    


About the PFLA

Offered in partnership between the Institute of Government and GGFOA, the Public Finance Leadership Academy (PFLA) will equip new and emerging public sector financial management leaders with the knowledge they need to successfully manage the fiscal affairs and activities of a local government. As a participant in this six-month cohort program, you will learn from your peers, industry professionals and leadership experts to take your skills to the next level.        

Key Concepts 

The PFLA focuses on leadership and financial skills for government leaders, going beyond the basics to discuss such concepts as personal and organizational integrity, self-awareness, change leadership, local, state and federal laws, strategic planning, internal control and the cycle of financial management, government accounting principles, preparing for the audit, and more. 

Government Structure and Operations

This advanced program is designed to outfit participants with the distinguished skills to lead financial operations and effectively communicate at all levels of government and with the public.

Advanced Financial Management Concepts

PFLA participants will encounter next-level training in financial management, studying intergovernmental agreements, contractual debt obligations, long-term fiscal sustainability measures, property taxes, pensions and OPEB as well as the Capital Improvement Process, financing options, referendums, underlying credit and bond ratings and more.

Leadership and Effective Communication

Our leadership focus sets the PFLA apart from other programs that focus only on finance skills. To be the leaders of tomorrow, finance professionals need skills to build and inspire teams. PFLA will offer the latest training in government leadership.


The PFLA will accept approximately 25 participants at a time, who will follow the academy’s courses together as a cohort and graduate at the same time. Applications for the first cohort are available now. Applications involve contact information, employment information, previous experience, educational background, professional information, and an applicant essay. All candidate applications will be reviewed for selection and entry into the Academy. The Advisory Board is made up of finance professionals from across the State of Georgia. Acceptance into the program is selective based on the number of years in your current position, involvement in professional organizations, an applicant essay (why you want to participate in the program and what you hope to gain from the program), supervisor approval, and completion of the Level II Finance Officer Certification Program.

Requirements for acceptance into the program

  • Number of years in current position

  • Involvement in professional organizations

  • Applicant essay (why you want to participate and what you hope to gain from the program)

  • Supervisor approval

  • Letter of support/approval for participation from manager/supervisor or city or county leader


Please send the completed application to John Hulsey at jhulsey@uga.edu