The J.W. Fanning Institute for Leadership Development has recognized a staff member and doctoral candidate for their work in promoting leadership development throughout Georgia.

At a meeting of the Fanning Institute Advisory Board on May 18, Director Matt Bishop presented the Sisson Community Leadership Development Award to Christina Allen-Wise and Lindsay Brown.

Through this award, made possible by the Dan Sisson Community Leadership Development Fund, the Fanning Institute recognizes outstanding work done each year by one faculty or staff member and one graduate student engaged in community leadership programming in underserved communities throughout Georgia.

Both Allen-Wise and Brown will receive $500 from the fund to pursue professional development and continuing education activities.

“Christina and Lindsay both embody the spirit of this award,” said Fanning Institute Director Matt Bishop. “The two of them, through their roles here at the institute, engage directly with communities and organizations seeking to enhance leadership skills development. Their hard work and commitment contributes directly to the success of our programs, partnerships and projects across Georgia, and I am proud to recognize those efforts.”

Allen-Wise, a program coordinator at the Fanning Institute, organizes and coordinates program logistics for the institute’s community leadership programs.

In that role, she supports faculty members who work on the programs, provides program planning and accounting support, works with representatives from the communities on program details and assists with the program assessment and reporting processes.

Along with those responsibilities, Allen-Wise also helps coordinate the institute’s yearly Community Leadership Conference and is involved with the institute’s efforts to engage with communities throughout the state to enhance their adult community leadership programming.

“It’s an honor to receive this recognition,” said Allen-Wise. “I appreciate Mr. Sisson’s commitment to leadership development and to faculty and staff development, and I look forward to using this award to broaden my skills in order to better serve the institute and communities across Georgia.”

Meanwhile, Brown – a doctoral candidate studying industrial and organizational psychology – has worked on a justice and mental health study conducted by the institute for the Athens-Clarke County community and an entrepreneurial leadership program in Athens-Clarke County.

For the mental health study, Brown developed approaches to analyzing the data gathered through the study to better understand the mental health ecosystem in Athens-Clarke County. She has also helped strategize ways to grow and develop the entrepreneurial leadership program, called Goodbiz, meeting with community members and gathering feedback.

“This award presents a tremendous opportunity for me to further my education and professional development within the area of law enforcement leadership, and I’m incredibly grateful to Mr. Sisson and the institute for this award,” said Brown.

Bishop emphasized that this award could not happen without the generosity of Dan Sisson, who serves as a member of the institute’s advisory board.

“We sincerely appreciate Dan’s commitment to the Fanning Institute and leadership development,” said Bishop. “His support, through this award, provides our faculty and staff a chance to build their skills and better serve the state.”

Sisson said he proudly supports the Fanning Institute’s work.

“When I think about the legacy I want to leave for the Sisson name, I thought about community development and leadership education,” said Sisson. “I have seen their importance firsthand.”

Along with receiving the monetary award, the institute recognizes Sisson Award winners through a permanent wall display at the J.W. Fanning Building on the UGA campus.

Writer: Charlie Bauder; 706-542-7039;