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Four Maxwell Alumni Named NAPA Fellows

November 19, 2021

U.S Rep. Carolyn Bourdeaux, Nuria Esparch, Amma Felix and Shiro Gnanaselvam are among 39 public administration leaders who have been named 2021 National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA) Fellows.

Four Maxwell School alumni are among 39 public administration leaders who have been named 2021 National Academy of Public Administration Fellows.

NAPA is an independent, nonprofit and non-partisan organization established in 1967 to assist government leaders in building more effective, efficient, accountable and transparent organizations. Induction into NAPA is considered one of the leading honors for scholars in the discipline. The new fellows join former cabinet officers, members of congress, governors, mayors and state legislators, prominent scholars, business executives, nonprofit leaders and public administrators.

NAPA Fellows 2021








The alumni inductees are:

U.S. Rep. Carolyn Bourdeaux ’03 Ph.D. (PA), who took office in January 2021, representing Georgia’s 7th district. Just a few months into her term, legislation she wrote passed both houses and was signed into law by the president. In addition to the successful Paycheck Protection Program Extension Act, she has introduced bills to support supply chain resiliency, infrastructure and state and local COVID-19 funding flexibility. Bourdeaux previously served as an associate professor at Georgia State University’s Andrew Young School of Public Policy.

Nuria Esparch ’00 E.M.P.A., who served as Minister of Defense of Peru. The first woman to hold the position, she was charged with oversight of national security and the ministries of War, Navy and Aeronautics. She previously served as vice minister for defense resources in the Ministry of Defense of Peru; chief executive of the National Civil Service Authority; chief of staff for the Office of the Vice Minister at the Ministry of the Interior; and as secretary general at the Ministry of Agriculture, Labor and Employment Promotion as well as at the Ministry of Women and Vulnerable Populations.

Amma Felix ’01 M.P.A., president and chief executive officer of Collegiate Directions Inc., a nonprofit that helps low-income and first-generation students plan for and succeed in college. Felix is also a Maxwell Advisory Board member and a founding member of Chief, a network of professional women. She previously worked for the United Negro College Fund, rising from chief of staff to vice president, strategy and secretary of the corporation. She also served as vice president for strategy management for the Abyssinian Development Corp.

Shiro Gnanaselvam ’93 M.P.A., the chief executive officer of Social Impact, a consulting firm that aids global development organizations in improving health and education, reducing poverty and promoting peace and democratic governance. Among other roles, Gnanaselvam previously served as the chief operating officer of Africare, an organization that seeks to improve the quality of life in Africa by addressing food insecurity, HIV and AIDS, empowering women and expanding access to potable water.

Fellows are nominated and selected by rigorous criteria including administrative experience, scholarly contributions to public administration and ethical standards.

More than 60 Maxwell alumni and numerous past and present faculty members have been named NAPA Fellows. Among them is Robert Bifulco, associate dean, chair and professor of public administration and international affairs.

“This is a well-deserved honor for the latest Maxwell inductees,” says Bifulco. “It is gratifying to realize how much our alumni contribute to the academy’s mission.”

By Jewell Bohlinger

Published in the Summer 2022 issue of the Maxwell Perspective

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