Leisha LaRiviere is Associate Director of SPIA for the Virginia Tech Richmond campus. She leads School of Public and International Affairs (SPIA) academic initiatives emphasizing community-based research, sponsored programs, and government leadership and management development initiatives. Leisha is Principal Investigator for a multi-million dollar research portfolio, engaging faculty and graduate students in all research phases.
Professor LaRiviere is Director of the graduate certificate in Government and Nonprofit Organizations, and teaches in the Center for Public Administration & Policy (CPAP). Courses taught include personnel-related processes and policies, public management behavioral skills, management systems, and graduate student capstone projects. Working cross-functionally with faculty in Blacksburg, the National Capital Region (Alexandria and Arlington), and Richmond, Leisha develops public partnerships, strategic research opportunities, and special lecture series.
Professor LaRivere is the Director of the Virginia Management Fellows (VMF) program, an innovative training partnership with SPIA and the Commonwealth of Virginia. Leisha also leads the Virginia Public Sector Leader (VPSL) program, a theory-to-practice management and leadership program designed for state agencies and NGOs. Leisha directs the Master of Public Administration (MPA) Mentoring Program for CPAP Richmond, and facilitates graduate assistant-ships and internship opportunities. Experienced in nonprofit organizational development and policy advocacy, Leisha is a former President & CEO of a major regional nonprofit. where she successfully advocated Virginia’s General Assembly for community land trust development law. Leisha currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Urban Land Institute (ULI) of Virginia, on the Board of Directors of the Virginia Leadership Advisory Council, and is a Leadership Metro Richmond Graduate.
Her research interests include: policy and practice in government and NGO professional development; organizational theory and context; and, facilitative and participative leadership. Leisha is a PhD candidate in public administration and policy, and holds a Master of Public Administration degree from Virginia Tech. Her BS in general business and merchandising is from the University of Montevallo.