National Governors Association

President Barack Obama answers questions from the National Governors Association in the State Dining Room of the White House, Feb. 22, 2010.

The National Governors Association (NGA), founded in 1908 as the National Governors’ Conference,[1] at the Conference of Governors; that conference was felt necessary by the Inland Waterways Commission the previous October, to provide both state and national views relating to practical questions dealing with natural resources utilization and management in the Progressive Era.[2] The NGA represents the governors of the fifty U.S. states and five U.S. territories (American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands). It is funded primarily by state dues, federal grants and contracts, and private contributions.[3]

NGA serves as a key public policy liaison between the state governments and the federal government. NGA provides governors and their senior staff members with services that range from representing states on Capitol Hill and at the White House when discussing federal issues to developing policy reports on state programs and hosting networking seminars for state executive branch officials. The NGA Center for Best Practices focuses on state innovations and best practices on issues that range from education and health to technology, welfare reform, and the environment. NGA also provides management and technical assistance to both new and incumbent governors.

NGA has adopted a policy in 1977 formalizing its standard practice for many years: The position of NGA chair alternates yearly between Republican and Democratic governors, so that neither party can control the position for two consecutive years. The vice chair is usually of the opposite party to the chair, and generally assumes the role of chair the following year. The current NGA chair is Governor Jack Markell of Delaware, a Democrat. The vice chair is Governor Mary Fallin of Oklahoma, a Republican.

Bill Clinton is, to date, the only former chair of the organization to become President of the United States.


[edit] Chairs

Chairs preside for a one-year term and alternate party affiliation:[4]

[edit] Equivalent organizations

Several other countries, including Japan and Canada, have similar organizations:

[edit] References

  1. ^ Robert D. Behn, Governors on Governing, University Press of America, 1991 ISBN 0-8191-7891-8, p. 185.
  2. ^ Inland Waterways Commission Recommendations… Inquiries in Progress Letter to the President, October 5, 1907: …”3. We are of opinion that the conference may best be held in the national capital next winter, and that the conferees should comprise the governors of all our States and Territories, a limited number of delegates to be appointed by each governor, and representatives from leading organizations of both State and national scope engaged in dealing with natural resources or with practical questions relating thereto… In his Memphis address on October 4 the President announced the intention of calling such a conference, and on November 13 he issued invitations to the governors of the States and Territories to meet at the White House May 13–15, 1908;…”
  3. ^ FAQ National Governors Association website, “How is NGA funded?”. Retrieved March 4, 2008.
  4. ^ “Historical Timeline”. National Governors Association Centennial. Retrieved 2008-10-27. 

[edit] External links

This article uses material from the Wikipedia article National Governors Association, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.