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First organized in 1979 as the Southern Consortium of University Public Service Organizations, CUPSO supports university-based public service institutes in their efforts to assist state and local governments on a range of contemporary issues and challenges. CUPSO facilitates networking, information exchange, and collaboration among its member institutions.

CUPSO members focus on:

  • Improving policy making by providing credible research and evaluation information.
  • Improving government management practices through research, training and technical assistance.
  • Developing leadership skills among city, county, state and regional government and nonprofit leaders.
  • Providing students with opportunities to learn about and actively participate in addressing public policy challenges.


CUPSO’s 2020-2021 Officers are:

  • President
    Dallas Breen, Executive Director
    John C. Stennis Institute of Government and Community Development
     Mississippi State University
  • Vice President/President-Elect
    Dan Clark, Director
    Local Government Center
    Montana State University


Ashley Labosier joined CUPSO as director in July 2020. Previously she served as executive director of one of CUPSO's member centers: the Davenport Institute for Public Engagement and Civic Leadership at the Pepperdine School of Public Policy. Ashley is a national writer and speaker on public engagement and transparency issues. She has a decade of experience training local government staff and elected officials to engage the full diversity of their residents meaningfully in local policy decisions,  as well as designing and facilitating such public processes.  Ashley is an adjunct professor at the Pepperdine School of Public Policy. She has a BA in Government from Patrick Henry College and an MPP from the Pepperdine School of Public Policy.