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Workforce Development and Training

NACCHO is committed to a competent workforce in local health departments (LHDs). NACCHO offers a variety of workshops and trainings, supports and promotes leadership development and core competency efforts, and engages in national policy discussions to address pressing public health workforce issues.


The Workforce Resource Center provides a list of helpful tools and information concerning the public health workforce.

In the Spotlight

The CDC's Public Health Associate Program (PHAP) will be accepting applications January 4-22, 2016 to host a public health associate starting in October 2016. PHAP is a two year training program with the mission to train and provide experiential learning to early-career public health professionals.

Priorities for Host Sites

PHAP enables entry-level public health professionals (with a minimum of a bachelor's degree) to gain hands-on, real-life experience in the day-to-day operations of public health programs. This year, CDC encourages host sites to give associates projects that advance its chronic disease prevention and health promotion priorities. The main priority areas are listed below. Click here to learn more about the specific priorities in each area.

  • Diabetes
  • Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention
  • Arthritis
  • Maternal and Child Health; Reproductive Health
  • Tobacco Control
  • Nutrition
  • School Health
  • Physical Activity
  • Oral Health
  • Cancer

Pre-Application Host Site Training

CDC developed a two-part training for potential host sites as they consider applying to host an associate. Potential host sites are encouraged to begin their planning process now. Please click the following links for more information about PHAP and the strategic development of a quality PHAP training.

Questions about PHAP can be e-mailed to Please consider applying to host a public health associate. It's a great opportunity to have an impact on developing the skills of the future public health workforce. More »

Individual Development Plan Guide
IDP Guide Image

The Individual Development Plan (IDP) is an excellent tool to help LHD staff at all levels create and work towards specific learning goals to be completed in order to enhance individual and organizational performance. An LHD employee determines the activities and deadlines for each goal, as well as ways to measure attainment of skills and completion of learning tasks. The IDP is a living document which should be amended and altered as situations change. Successful completion of IDP goals may be fostered by guidance and support from supervisors and peer coaches. This IDP guide was adapted from a product created for the Survive and Thrive leadership development program. Questions or concerns about use of this guide may be addressed to


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How Can Leaders Guide Local Health Departments through Times of Transition?

Local health officials and their staff are exploring innovative partnerships with other agencies in health care and identifying new ways of operating within and influencing the economic and social conditions of our health system. Such work demands a new kind of leadership –a transition from our typical spheres of influence and authority to mobilizing people to tackle tough challenges and thrive. Adaptive Leadership is a practical framework for leading consequential change in the midst of significant market and sociopolitical transformation.

Adaptive Leadership

Visit to learn more. More »