Leadership Excellence for Acquisition Professionals

“This is a great program for all acquisition professionals who aspire to be future leaders.”

— Former participant
Apply by October 10

Quick Details


October 2018–June 2019, 90 course hours




High-performing midlevel acquisition professionals who have reached the GS-12 to GS-14 level at the time of application

Program Details PDF


For more information contact Diana Starkes at DStarkes@ourpublicservice.org or
(202) 292‑1014.

As budgets tighten across government, federal agencies are struggling with a critical question: How can they avoid cutting important components of their mission-critical work while still reducing operating costs? Increasingly, the burden of coming up with solutions falls on acquisition teams.

The Leadership Excellence for Acquisition Professionals program helps federal acquisition professionals evolve into the highly capable leaders agencies need to spearhead cost-saving, performance-improving, innovation-driving efforts.

Our eight-month program gives participants the time and space to become well-rounded leaders. Each three-day program session focuses on a different facet of leadership: leading teams, managing and motivating others, driving innovation and achieving results. By developing these core areas, participants graduate from the program able to tackle government’s most complex acquisition challenges.

After graduation, 100% of supervisors said their employees in the program were effective at peer communication and networking within their organizations

95% indicated the program had a positive impact on their ability to innovate and be creative with their daily acquisition work

How to Apply

At the time of application, applicants must be high-performing, midlevel acquisition professionals who have reached the GS-12 to GS-14 level at the time of application and have at least three to five years of experience working in their field. At minimum, participants should possess at least a FAC-C Level II or equivalent certification and have at least three years of federal contracting experience. Please be aware that your agency may raise the level of qualifications to meet their guidelines.

Program content is geared toward motivated, aspiring leaders with the experience and ability to take on needed leadership positions within their teams. We ensure all applicants meet the minimum qualifications for the programs to ensure the quality of the experience for all program participants.

Applications must include your personal information, professional experience and objectives, up-to-date resume and letter of reference from your supervisor. Carefully consider your short-answer responses to ensure your government career objectives align with our high expectations for participants. You may save your application and return to it later.

If you have further questions, please see the FAQ section.

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Learn about how Leadership Excellence for Acquisition Professionals gave Lakeisha Green the tools she needed to grow her leadership toolbox.

Program Structure

The Leadership Excellence for Acquisition Professionals program is divided into two basic activities: learning and doing. During classroom sessions, participants explore foundational leadership principles from experienced instructors and alongside their federal acquisition peers. And then they put those classroom lessons to use when they return to their day-to-day jobs.

Participants further reinforce classroom lessons by working on results project teams to hone their leadership and collaboration skills under the guidance of an expert coach. And the results projects are more than just a program assignment—these projects address real-world challenges and have the potential to truly benefit agencies.

We expect that participants will attend each session and adequately prepare for each one by working on team projects and reading reports, case studies and articles. Prior to applying, you should review the program schedule and confirm your availability.

October 23-25

Value-Based Leadership
  • Improving interpersonal skills
  • Pursuing integrity
  • Gaining motivation for public service
  • Promoting self-management

December 10-12

Leading Teams
  • Managing conflict
  • Building teams

January 29-31

Managing and Motivating Others
  • Leveraging diversity
  • Developing others
  • Inspiring and engaging others
  • Building relationships and trust

March 11-12

Adapting to Change
  • Integrating creativity and innovation
  • Expanding flexibility
  • Improving problem solving

May 21-22

Achieving Results
  • Establishing accountability
  • Broadening strategic thinking
  • Building partnerships
  • Influencing and negotiating shared goals

June 25-27

Graduation and Commitment to Action
  • Enhancing oral communication

“I would recommend this program to any 1102 seeking to become a better leader—and a better person.”

— Former participant

“The LEAP program teaches skills and self-development techniques that will allow 1102s to be the best in class for their agency.”

— Former participant


Members from the Partnership staff will work with you throughout the Leadership Excellence for Acquisition Professionals program to ensure that your cohort experience goes smoothly.

Kevin Johnson
Senior Manager

Livi Logan-Wood

Lexi Quinn
Associate Manager

Jaimie Winters


Q: What application materials must I provide to be eligible?
You are required to submit a copy of your resume and a complete supervisor endorsement form. Your resume should include all professional work experience, including nongovernmental experience. Your supervisor endorsement form must come from your direct supervisor.

Q: How will I know if I’m accepted?
You will receive an email from a Partnership representative notifying you of your acceptance status within one week after the application deadline. If we have an agreement with your agency to accept you as part of an internal selection process, you will receive word from your agency first, but your acceptance is not confirmed until you have received a notification from us.

Q: I’m no longer able to attend, can I defer my enrollment? Will I receive a refund?
Yes, you can defer your enrollment, but only if you paid your tuition prior to the tuition deadline of the program year for which you applied. If you have not, you will need to reapply. We do provide credits or refunds to agencies who have paid but are no longer able to send participants to the program. If you have participated in one or more sessions, we will determine the credit or refund amount on a case-by-case basis.

Q: Can I reapply if I am not accepted into the program?
Yes, you are able to reapply as long as you meet the program’s minimum qualifications. However, please check with your agency prior to reapplying—we do limit the number of accepted participants from a single agency in order to maintain a sufficient diversity of agency perspectives.

Q: Is there an application fee?

Q: How much is tuition?
Tuition is $6,500, which includes all course materials (e.g., books, articles and management tools), online collaboration tools for team projects, and access to the Partnership’s resources, expertise and networks.

Q: When is the tuition deadline, and what are the options for tuition payment?
Pay should be arranged prior to the first session (the specific date will be provided in the first program communication to accepted applicants). Your agency is responsible for paying tuition. We do not accept payment from individual applicants.

We accept the following forms of payment: credit card (Visa, MasterCard or American Express), purchase order or Standard Form 182 (SF-182). The Tuition Form will provide instructions to request a purchase order that can be paid by your agency through Automated Clearing House transfer or check.

We will work directly with the agency POC (e.g., training coordinator, human resources specialist) responsible for paying your tuition, but we will need you to provide us with the name, email and phone number of the POC. Any tuition status update requests should go through your agency POC.

Q: What should I do if I have to miss parts of a session or an entire session? Do you offer make-up sessions?
Graduation from Partnership programs is contingent upon full attendance and participation in sessions. In the event of a conflict, please contact the program manager or program associate as soon as possible. Should you miss any part of a session or an entire session, you will need to attend the same session topic during the following year’s program. We only offer make-up sessions within the same program year for the first session.

The first session make-up will take place before the second session, but you MUST receive permission from the program manager to attend. Failure to attend the first session or make-up session will automatically result in your withdrawal from the program, even if you can attend the remaining sessions.

Q: Where will the sessions take place?
All classroom sessions will take place at the Partnership (see address below). There will be off-site visits throughout the program to federal agencies as well as nongovernmental organizations in the DC/Maryland/Virginia area. Participants will be notified of these visits in advance.

Partnership for Public Service
1100 New York Avenue NW, Suite 200 East
Washington, DC 20005

Q: Will I receive any training credits upon my completion of the program?
Yes, LEAP graduates receive 90 Continuous Learning Points (CLPs).

Q: Will I take any personality assessments as part of the program?
Yes, we administer and facilitate debriefs on two assessments. The DiSC assessment should be taken prior to kick-off (access to this assessment is contingent on paying tuition beforehand). Additionally, the program offers a multi-rater assessment of emotional intelligence accompanied by a one-on-one coaching session that will provide a complete "360-degree" view of your emotional and social functioning.

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