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Each year CSG West brings together a distinguished national faculty to offer the West’s premier training experience for Western state legislators in their first four years of service. The goals of the Western Legislative Academy (WLA) are to help newer legislators become more effective and to build stronger state legislative institutions. To that end a faculty of outstanding academics, corporate, military and public trainers work with a small class of lawmakers who come from each of our 13 Western states.


Members of the Academy are selected on the basis of their dedication to public service, desire to improve personal legislative effectiveness and commitment to the institution of the legislature.




The Western Legislative Academy (WLA), an annual three and a half-day intensive training program, is an opportunity for Western state legislators in their first four years of service to sharpen skills needed for effective lawmaking, building support for the legislature as an institution and giving legislators from different states the opportunity to learn from each other. The WLA reinforces CSG West's mission to provide opportunities for Western state legislators to share good ideas across state borders.

Class Members

The WLA is a scholarship program, and admission has become extremely competitive. The WLA typically receives over 90 applications for 39 slots. The CSG West Executive Committee, composed of bipartisan Western state legislative leaders, annually selects class participants. Note: the WLA is a classroom experience, not a conference. WLA offers no events for spouses, guests or children.



The WLA maintains an impressive faculty that includes leading academic authorities on state legislatures, a USAF Ret. Lt. Col and Pentagon trainer as well as national experts in communications, leadership, time management, public decision making, ethics and negotiations.




Date and Location

The 19th WLA will be held November 28 - December 1, 2018 in Colorado Springs, Colorado, where the El Pomar Foundation generously donates the historic Penrose House and its meeting facilities as the campus. 



WLA is highly ranked by those who participate and by the bipartisan legislative leaders of the West who support theAcademy. Since its inception in 2000, the WLA has graduated 680 alumni from member states, who have exceeded our goals in making a difference in their legislatures. Many WLA alumni are still serving in Western state legislatures with many of them in chamber, caucus and committee leadership positions. Several now serve in the U.S. House of Representatives and in the U.S. Senate. Other alumni have gone on to state-wide elected offices and cabinet positions, demonstrating the long term impact of the Academy.



For more information about the WLA program, please contact Erica Miller by phone at            (916) 553-4423 or email at emiller@csg.org.