Bob Lavigna is an award-winning public-sector leader and innovator with more than 30 years of experience leading government organizations and programs. He is a Senior Fellow – Public Sector for UKG, which provides HR, payroll and workforce management technology and services to inspire people and elevate the work experience. Bob’s role is to advocate for, promote and advise on effective practices that enable government to attract and retain talent.
He previously was Director of the Institute for Public Sector Employee Engagement, a division of CPS HR Consulting, an independent and self-supporting government agency. He worked with state and local governments across the nation to measure and improve engagement as a key to maximizing organizational performance.
Bob’s book, "Engaging Government Employees: Motivate and Inspire Your People to Achieve Superior Performance" (Harper Collins Publishing), is the first book to focus exclusively on employee engagement in the unique environment of the public sector.
Before joining CPS, he was Assistant Vice Chancellor and Director of HR for the University of Wisconsin, where he directed campus-wide HR policies and programs for a university ranked among the world’s top 35 research institutions. Bob was also an adjunct professor in the School of Public Affairs.
Before that, Bob served as Vice President - Research for the Partnership for Public Service, a nonpartisan nonprofit dedicated to revitalizing the public service by inspiring new generations to serve and helping transform government. He directed research projects, including “Best Places to Work in the Federal Government,” that found new ways for government to attract, develop and retain talent.
Bob also previously served as Director of the state of Wisconsin civil service system. Appointed by the Governor and unanimously confirmed by the State Senate, he is the longest-serving merit system director in Wisconsin history. Bob began his career with the U.S. Government Accountability Office, where his positions included HR Director of GAO’s largest field office.
He is an elected Fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration, was selected as a “Public Official of the Year” by Governing magazine and has received the highest leadership awards from the Public Sector Human Resources Association (PSHRA) and the American Society for Public Administration Section on Personnel and Labor Relations (SPALR). The organizations he led have also received innovation awards from the Ford Foundation, PSHRA, the Urban League, and others.
Bob is a past national president of PSHRA and past national chair of SPALR.
He writes frequently on HR topics for professional publications and has spoken at conferences and events across the U.S. and in Europe, Asia, Africa, the Middle East, South America and the Caribbean.
Bob has a B.A. in Public Affairs from George Washington University and an M.S. in Human Resources Management from Cornell University.