Webvent Academy

Bringing Professionals Together

Developing Ethical Leaders and an Ethical Government Brand

Tuesday, March 19, 2013 12:00pm - 1:00pm EDT  
Host: Association for Talent Development
By: Linda Fisher Thornton, Leading in Context and John Umana, Assistant Legal Counsel to the Inspector General of USAID, USAID

After a breach of ethics has occurred, and the public has negative perceptions, government agencies often give ethics training. Leaders should learn about ethics long before that, as part of their training to become better leaders. Linda Fisher Thornton, educator and authority on developing ethical leaders, and former Chief Learning Officer, will present the first part of this session. She will focus on how to incorporate ethics into leadership training so that it becomes a vital part of the management arsenal. With trends in ethical leadership and practical strategies for developing ethical leaders, training can positively affect the government brand.

In the second part of the session, John Umana, assistant legal counsel to the inspector general of USAID, will speak to the unique role of the ethics educator within government, drawing upon his extensive experience at USAID/OIG and with the special inspector general for Afghanistan reconstruction as an ethics officer. John will focus on ethics "best practices" and speak to the practical challenges and issues surrounding ethics education and its impact on the government brand.


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Linda Fisher Thornton
Linda Fisher Thornton

Leading in Context

Linda Fisher Thornton is CEO of Leading in Context LLC, a strategic leadership development consulting firm in Richmond, Virginia. Linda has taken on the mission of “clarifying what it means to lead ethically in a complex world” and her work is striking a chord with leaders across industries. Since its launch in 2009, her Leading in Context® Blog has attracted followers from 160 countries.
In January, 2013 she was named one of the 2013 Top 100 Thought Leaders in Trustworthy Business Behavior by Trust Across America.

Linda has over 25 years of leadership, training design, consulting, and organizational development experience. Her client list includes Fortune 500 companies, small to medium size businesses and professional practices, and non-profit organizations in a wide variety of industries. In addition to providing visioning retreats and leadership development, she publishes leadership learning tools through her website at LeadinginContext.com.

Linda is former Senior Vice President and Training Division Manager at Central Fidelity Bank, a Virginia bank that was headquartered in Richmond. When she led the Central Fidelity Training Division, she and her team were awarded the National Training Director’s Forum Newsletter Award for Outstanding Performance in Training for Matching Training and Consulting Services to Business Imperatives. Linda was honored as an Outstanding Young Virginian by the Virginia Jaycees in recognition of her professional and volunteer contributions within Virginia communities.

Linda holds a Master’s degree in Human Resource Development from George Washington
University and a Bachelor’s degree in Communication and Linguistics from the University of Virginia.

Selected Publications and Presentations Include:

• Interview by The Human Factor, a human resource publication in India about trends in ethical leadership. Interview appears in the January 2013 HR & Business Trends Issue.
• Presentation on The Future of Ethics and Leadership at the 2012 Richmond Society of Human Resource Management Strategic Leadership Conference
• Article “Leadership Ethics Training: Why is it So Hard to Get it Right?” published in ASTD’s Training and Development Magazine in 2009, and reprinted in 2010 in T&D’s Best of Leadership Development 2006-2009.

In addition to consulting, blogging and publishing, Linda also teaches leadership as an Adjunct Assistant Professor for the University of Richmond School of Professional and Continuing Studies.

John Umana
John Umana

Assistant Legal Counsel to the Inspector General of USAID, USAID

Mr. Umana is Assistant Legal Counsel to the Inspector General at USAID and ethics advisor. Before joining USAIDs OIG, he was the Deputy General Counsel and ADAEO at the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR). His duties at these posts include reviewing and certifying OGE financial disclosure reports and conducting annual ethics training. Mr. Umana was a Danforth Fellow, and is a graduate of Manhattan College (B.A.) and the University of Michigan (Ph.D. and J.D.), where he was an author and Note Editor of the Michigan Law Review.

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