Director, Research & Planning at Travis County HHS
Lawrence Lyman has over 20 years’ experience in public service, primarily in local government with Travis County and the City of Austin. He currently serves as Director of Research & Planning, overseeing planning staff, and managing workforce development and education for the Travis County Health and Human Services & Veterans Service Department.
Prior to this assignment, his work has encompassed a wide range of human services issues including early childhood, youth development, basic needs, and public safety. Work in these areas has encompassed all phases of intermediary work: assessment, planning, implementation, and evaluation.
Mr. Lyman has worked with and around non-profit organizations in many capacities:
- As a funder: Travis County invests several million dollars to purchase social services from community based organizations;
- As a partner: The Research & Planning Division has done extensive work with non-profit organizations around community assessments, community planning, program design and evaluation;
- As a volunteer: Currently serve on the Boards of Directors for the Capital Area Workforce Development Board and Skillpoint Alliance.
Lawrence earned a Bachelor of Arts from Rice University and a Master of Public Affairs from the L.B.J. School at the University of Texas at Austin.
Brief statement why you have accepted appointment and what you would consider to have been a successful tenure when your term:
Service on the Community Leadership Council provides a new and powerful opportunity to strengthen the non-profit organizations that are so important to the vitality of our community. In my career in health and human services, I have seen the great value that non-profit organizations provide, and have seen the public sector increasingly depend upon these organizations to serve disadvantaged residents of Travis County.
As we increasingly rely on these organizations to meet needs across the community, it only makes sense to pay more attention to strengthening them so that we can see both a more sustainable impact on the community and greater accountability for public dollars invested in them. The Center was among the first, and remains one of the few places in the community to make an intentional and thoughtful effort to service the non-profit community. I look forward to playing at least a small role in building a stronger, more impactful Center.
Brief statement on your sense of the Center’s impact for its first 15 years and its potential for future:
ACC’s Center for Nonprofit Studies has been one of the few reliable sources of training and technical assistance for non-profit organizations in our community. They have played large role in building capacity of nonprofit organizations through a valuable combination of training for individuals in, and around the non-profit sector, and technical assistance to non-profit organizations.
As a funder of non-profits to provide social services, Travis County has built and maintains a strong partnership with the Center. We have frequently guided agencies with which we work to look to the Center for assistance, and, at times, engaged the Center as a consultant to work with particularly challenged agencies. We have found that this type of intervention has helped our partners perform better over time.