Mr. Lawson has 31 years of professional experience. Currently, Michael Lawson is an affiliated faculty member of the State and Local Government Leadership Center at George Mason University. He conducts research on local government finance and policy as well as teaches a course in performance management.  Mike is also is Principal in his consulting practice, Performance Management, Organizational Metrics and Public Policy in Washington, DC. He conducts training and customized consultations in performance management and organizational leadership to federal, state and local officials as well as for associations and non-profits. Mike studies and writes on a variety of public policy issues, with a special emphasis on state-local tax policy, local government finance, fiscal federalism and intergovernmental relations.

Lawson served as Director of the International City/County Management Association (ICMA) Center for Performance Measurement from 1999-2012. He headed a program that assists local governments use performance measurement to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of public services—all through the prism of organizational management, leadership and outcome-based governance.

Prior to joining ICMA, Mike served as director of government finance for the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities (CCM) from 1988 to 1997, representing the interests of local government before executive and legislative branches of state government in a variety of issues. 1981-1988, Mr. Lawson was a research fellow/public finance analyst for the U.S. Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations, focusing on tax and expenditure policies of state and local governments in the U.S.  He holds a master's degree in public affairs from the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University.  He is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Purdue University.