What does our name mean? Publica stands for ‘public affairs’…that one’s easy, as that’s what my colleagues and I have been all about for over half a century, but Virtú is a bit more complicated. The accent over the ú is important, as it’s adapted from a concept first proffered by Niccolò Machiavelli (that’s an image of him on the left of our home page)…that is, that to be successful, the very best public servants have to be both lions and foxes.

In other words, they need to be lions on one hand, courageous and bold about applying the values we stand for—for example, things like “We the People”—but at the same time, we also need to be cunning and shrewd about it. That’s the ‘foxes’ part. And my small company and its powerful network of colleagues are dedicated to helping public servants achieve that ideal.

Please note: the misogyny in Wikipedia’s reference to Publica Virtù is purely historical. We believe both women and men in public service can be lions and foxes!

Dr. Ronald P. Sanders (SES, retired)


Following a highly distinguished career in US government’s Senior Executive Service, the private sector, and academe, Ron Sanders is bringing his deep experience in government and administration to his role as President and CEO of Publica Virtu, an organization dedicated to helping public servants develop smart strategies for themselves and their agencies.

Dr. Sanders served as the US Intelligence Community’s first Associate Director of National Intelligence for Human Capital. His long career has included senior leadership positions with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management; the Internal Revenue Service, the US Defense Department, the consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton, the University of South Florida, and the Florida Center for Cybersecurity. By Presidential appointment, he also chaired the Federal Salary Council, which makes recommendations on pay raises for two million white-collar Federal employees. His honors include Harvard University’s Innovations in American Government Award, the National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medal, and three Presidential Ranks Awards. In addition, he was elected as a Fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration in 2006.

Learn More about Ron >

Latest News

Publica Virtú President and CEO Dr. Ron Sanders was recently elected to the National Council of the American Society for Public Administration, representing the organization’s District III, which covers the Southeast US; his ASPA portfolio will include efforts to stop the politicization of the US civil service. Sanders, a 2006 Fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration, ‘semi-retired’ from USF last October as Staff Director for the Florida Center for Cybersecurity and has since started Publica Virtú LLC; in addition, he has joined Business Executives for National Security (BENS), where among other things, he will be working on ‘early’ security clearances for university and college students. Sanders will also continue to consult on ‘special projects’ for the Internal Revenue Service and the US Intelligence Community (he served as Chief Human Capital Officer for both in his previous Federal career).

What We Stand For

Publica Virtú means “smart” public service and smart public servants. We are dedicated to leveraging our decades of experience to assist public servants in achieving the ideal of being both principled and shrewd in their approach to the challenges at hand.

Who We Serve

Our influential network of experts has deep experience in all branches of government – Federal, State and local – as well as the private sector and academe. We know how to solve big issues, speak truth to power and if necessary, keep top secrets.

What We Do

  • Lead and/or Participate in US Government and ‘Think Tank’ Studies
  • Design and implement innovative solutions to pressing HR and national security challenges
  • Consult with the U.S. Congress and Federal agencies, as well as the media
  • Author publications on key human resources and national security topics
  • Conduct symposia, lectures, and “war games” for government officials


Publica Virtú in the News