When the Georgia Municipal Association (GMA) holds their first in-person conference of the year in August, one of Statesboro’s own will be handing out hundreds of training awards to city officials in attendance.

City Councilmember Phil Boyum, who has served as the city of Statesboro’s District 1 representative since 2013, was elected to serve as the chair of the GMA Municipal Training Board during its annual meeting in spring of 2021. Initially appointed to the training board by the Carl Vinson Institute of Government Director Laura Meadows in January 2020, Boyum served as the board’s vice-chair during the past fiscal year. His tenure as the new chair of the board officially started on July 1.

“I am honored to be selected by my peers to lead the training board for the upcoming year,” Boyum said. “Across the state, this board is consistently referred to as ‘the hardest working committee in GMA. The unswerving dedication of past chairs and the enthusiastic work of board members has shown this to be absolutely true and, as chair, I aim to uphold that tradition as well.”

Phil Boyum

Along with chairing the training board, Boyum will also serve on the GMA Board of Directors – Fthe 66-member board that governs GMA and oversees the organization’s services to the 537 member cities in Georgia. He also served a year on the GMA Member Services Advisory Council.

“Education and lifelong learning have always been important to me, not just as an elected representative, but also as an individual, because I firmly believe that personal growth is a key component of life as well as leadership,” Boyum said. “I look forward to representing Statesboro at the state level and working hard to ensure all of our elected officials have the training they need to be outstanding public servants.”

One of this year’s biggest tasks for the Municipal Training Board is working with the Carl Vinson Institute of Government and GMA staff to update the Robert E. Knox Leadership Institute – a four-day intensive leadership training that can be transformative for elected officials and city administrators. The board hopes to have the revised curriculum available for the upcoming class in late September.

The Municipal Training Board’s 17 members consist of 12 elected officials from each of GMA’s regional districts, as well as three at large members, all appointed by the director of the institute in consultation with GMA. The director of the Carl Vinson Institute of Government and the commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs fill the remaining two seats. The board is the only GMA committee specifically created by an action of the Georgia state legislature.