Welcome to the County Development Institute of Washington

Leadership. Growth. Collaboration.


The County Development Institute of Washington is a collaboration between the Washington State Association of Counties (WSAC) and Washington Counties Risk Pool (WCRP). The County Development Institute provides county leaders in Washington state with in-depth training on budget & finance, effective meeting management, ethics in public service, and risk management. After completing eleven core courses, leaders can receive their Certified Public Official (CPO) certificate.

Upon receiving their CPO certificate, leaders will need to complete twelve continuing education credits every two years for their certification to remain in good standing. There is no cost to participate in this program as long as you are currently employed by a county within Washington state.

Course Listing

The following make up the eleven core courses leaders must complete to receive their Certified Public Official (CPO) certificate:

  • County Government 101
  • Public Records and Open Public Meetings
  • Effective Meeting Management
  • Budget & Finance
  • Constituent Relations
  • Ethics in Public Service
  • Risk Management
  • Public Sector Personnel Management pt. 1
  • Public Sector Personnel Management pt. 2
  • Media Relations & Communications
  • Leadership Styles

On-Demand Trainings

CDIWA is now offering on-demand trainings that are publicly available for county professionals on various topics with more to be added in the future. Available Courses:

  • Water 101 – Module A


At this time, the program is limited to only newly elected county officials that took office in January 2021. Additional opportunities to enroll for those who took office before January 2021 will be available this coming fall.

There is no cost to enroll in the Certified Public Official certificate program for those employed by a county in Washington state.

Yes, our advisory committee is hard at work developing additional certification tracks. We anticipate opening enrollment for these opportunities in the Fall of 2022.

Leaders will be placed in learning cohorts of up to 30 individuals. Together you will embark on an eight-month immersive experience with online, hybrid, and in-person learning opportunities. All courses will be recorded and available on our online learning platform.

Leaders will take online assessments for each of the eleven core courses. You will be required to score 80% or higher on each assessment to proceed to the next course segment.
Unfortunately, current work experience or attendance at recent trainings cannot be used to offset required learning credits for initial certification.


For additional information please contact us at info@cdiwa.org or use the form below.

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