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Lead for America Fellow

Lead for America
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A single visionary leader rooted in humility can change a community. Many working together can transform our country.

Lead for America selects, trains, and places our nation’s most promising young leaders in two-year paid fellowships in local governments as a means of strengthening America’s public institutions, supporting our local communities, and cultivating a new generation of transformational public service leaders.

Over the course of the two years, LFA Fellows will gain a new perspective and appreciation for local government, understand the most pressing issues facing our communities, be equipped with tools to enact communal and systemic change, establish relationships with partner universities and organizations, and gain opportunities to engage with a growing alumni network of passionate leaders, who together will continue to serve as transformational public service leaders in communities across the nation.

Service Activities

-Coordinating resources and community stakeholders to address an issue in the community
-Researching best practices for local government adoption
-Helping craft and analyze local government budgets
-Developing plans and strategies for local governments
-Presenting reports and plans to local government leaders
-Working alongside non-profit, business, and government leaders in a community to sustain community improvement projects

Community Need Addressed

Workforce shortage in local governments, Brain Drain, economic and labor challenges, the opioid epidemic, systematic mental health resource deficiencies, disaster relief and recovery, and other pressing issues facing overlooked mid-sized, small, and rural communities.

Position Outcomes

Improve capacity of local governments to deliver services to residents, build a pipeline of diverse young leaders in local government, and attract human and economic capital to depressed communities.


Health coverage, Housing, Living allowance, Stipend, Training

As a Fellow, you're going to be pushed and you're going to be challenged. But you're also going to have access to world-class training, a community of like-minded peers, a national network of public service leaders, and a staff that will be asking for your advice on how best to shape this program. Most importantly, you're going to be doing work that really matters. We're excited to meet you and create this experience together. We want to make sure our Fellows are ready to contribute and make a positive impact from Day 1. But we also want Fellows to end the Summer inspired and with a new set of friends and supporters. We try our best to do all of that at the Summer Institute. You'll spend 5 weeks living and working alongside your Fellow class, all while receiving training in public administration, learning the skills you'll need to succeed and developing the mindsets--and friendships--that you'll need to stay grounded along the way. We do everything we can to keep Fellows engaged in public service, ideally in the community or state in which they served, after the Fellowship concludes. This support includes seed money for Fellows wanting to start their own initiative, connections with a nationwide mentorship network, and relationships with graduate programs--including the potential for automatic scholarship money.

Education Benefits

Some Fellows, depending on the region, will be eligible for graduate credits toward a degree in public administration.

Skills you will gain

Public speaking, research, budget analysis, project management, writing skills, community organizing, presentation skills, management skills, cultural awareness and empathy, long-term planning and strategizing, knowledge of public administration and governance, leadership skills, problem-solving, professionalism

Competencies You Will Develop
Demonstrate sensitivity and empathy, Lead group discussion, Listen to and consider others' viewpoints, Maintain open lines of communication with others, Speak clearly, in precise language and in a logical, organized and coherent manner, Turn taking, Write cleary and effectively
Creativity & Problem Solving
Able to identify and define the problem, Capable of generating possible solutions, Communicate the problem to appropriate personnel, Improvise, Provide relevant expertise, Select and implement well-considered solution
Derive consensus, Develop constructive working relationships and maintain them over time, Establish a high degree of trust and credibility with others, Interact professionally and respectfully with supervisors and co-workers, Stay positive and outcome oriented, Use appropriate strategies and solutions for dealing with conflicts and differences to maintain a smooth workflow
Accepts responsibility, Anticipate the consequences of decisions, Identify and prioritize the key issues involved to facilitate the decision making process, Involve people appropriately in decisions that may impact them, Quickly respond with a back-up plan if a decision goes amiss
Carefully consider which tools or technological solutions are appropriate for a given job, Consistently choose the best tool or technological solution for the problem at hand, Seek opportunities to improve knowledge of tools and technologies that may assist in streamlining work and improving productivity
Able to prioritize various competing tasks, Create environment of contribution, Create plan of action, schedule tasks so that work is completed on time, Demonstrate the effective allocation of time and resources efficiently, Drive decision making, Effectively delegate tasks, Facilitate group planning, Set goals
Be pleasant, courteous, professional and respectful when dealing with internal and external customers or clients, Evaluate customer or client satisfaction, Honor the privilege of being able to work with and for those being served, Provide personalized, prompt, and efficient service to meet the requirements, requests and needs of customers, Recognize the importance of maintaining privacy and confidentiality of those being served, Understand and anticipate the needs of others, Understand the importance of one's role in the functioning of the organization, Understand the significance of maintaining a healthful and safe environment
  • Activity Types Hands On Activities, Office Activities, Professional Activities
  • Focus Areas Aging, Animals, Arts & Culture, Community & Nonprofit Development, Disability, Disaster, Economic Security, Education & Youth, Environment, Health & Nutrition, Homelessness & Housing, Legal Assistance, Public Safety, Veterans & Military Families
  • Length of Service 24 Months
  • Education Requirements College Graduate
  • Placement Individual and Team Placements
  • Service Setting Local Government Agency
  • Weekly Training Hours 3

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