Empowering public utilities

June 4, 2024

APPA launches on-demand online training for governing boards

In the ever-evolving landscape of public power, staying informed and prepared is crucial for effective governance.

Recognizing this need, the American Public Power Association (APPA) Academy has unveiled an innovative on-demand training series, Public Power Governance Essentials. This course is designed to empower municipal utility boards, commissions, and local governments with the knowledge and skills they need to navigate the complexities of their roles.

For Heartland Energy’s customer communities–especially those with newly elected council members or recent workforce hires–this training offers a valuable opportunity to enhance their governance capabilities.

Heartland Energy provides its customers with APPA membership, granting them access to this course and other valuable APPA offerings. As APPA members, they also benefit from discounted rates for this training.


About the course

This 15-part training series addresses the evolving roles and responsibilities of public power governing boards. It covers essential governance topics such as complying with charters and by-laws, managing conflicts of interest, understanding legal duties, and facilitating effective board meetings. The modules are designed to help participants develop the skills necessary to be productive board members and contribute to their organizations’ long-term success.


Course highlights

The format is fifteen short videos (12-25 minutes each) led by an expert instructor.

Modules include:

  • Public Power Governance Models
  • Charters, By-laws, and Codes of Conduct
  • Legal Obligations and Duties
  • Conflicts of Interest and Scenarios
  • Roles and Responsibilities
  • Board Development and Performance Monitoring
  • Strategic Planning and Stakeholder Engagement
  • And more

The course is recommended for newly elected or appointed public power policymakers, utility leaders, and staff who work with utility governing boards. Experienced officials can also benefit from the training.


Instructor profile

Steve VanderMeer, an executive consultant with over 35 years of experience in public power, leads the training. He has a rich background in strategic planning, governance, and customer service, having served as the senior vice president for planning and marketing at Hometown Connections.


Course access and pricing

Participants can access 15 recorded video modules and related course materials for 24 months. The APPA Policymakers Handbook can be added to the on-demand purchase at a reduced price.

APPA Members:

  • 1-4 people: $300 each
  • 5-9 people: $250 each
  • 10-14 people: $200 each
  • 15-24 people: $150 each
  • 25+ people: $100 each

Group orders must be placed together to qualify for discounts.



To purchase access for yourself or others, complete the checkout process and fill out the form available at EducationInfo@PublicPower.org. Access details will be provided within two business days.

For more information or any questions, contact EducationInfo@PublicPower.org.

This new training opportunity from the APPA Academy is a valuable resource for Heartland Energy’s customer communities, helping to build knowledgeable and effective utility governance teams.