Alumni Notes & News

This past month, President Barack Obama announced the nomination of Gustavo Velasquez ('99) for the position of Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity in the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Velasquez most recently served as the Executive Director of the Latino Economic Development Center. Prior to that, he was Director of the Washington, D.C. Office of...
Earlier this month, alumnus Tom Kozlik, '99, published two financial reports on state and local government. Kozlik, a municipal credit analyst for Janney Montgomery Scott LLC, says he still has a "cautious outlook on local governments." Click the links below to read Kozlik's reports: January 6, 2014: State Fiscal Health Update January 7, 2014: Outlook for Local Govt Still Cautious
This past month, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) reached a $131 million settlement with Merrill Lynch regarding allegations the firm mislead investors with its collateralized debt obligations (CDO). Fels alumnus Thomas Shupe (MPA '11) of the SEC was recognized for his role in the investigation, conducted through the agency’s New York Regional Office and Complex Financial...
Youssouf Abdel-Jelil (’89) was quoted in a New York Times piece about the ever-worsening hardships for refugees in Syria. While there are two million refugees outside Syria, roughly five million are displaced within the country. Currently serving as Representative for UNICEF Syria, Abdel-Jelil’s team tries to meet the basic needs for children in the conflict-ridden state. He estimates that three...
Nadira Branch (’09), a 2013-14 recipient of the prestigious J. William Fulbright Scholarship, is currently serving in the Republic of Haiti. Working with a Haitian NGO, she is heading efforts to offer business development programs to women-owned businesses. Branch (second from the left) previously volunteered with the Peace Corps in Mali. She has also worked with the African-American Chamber of...
By Melissa Field (MGA '10), Associate Process Improvement Analyst, City of Denver Every Mayor wants a better city and Mayor Hancock is no different. His vision is to build a world-class city where everyone matters. After his election, he coined the term Peak Performance and looked toward other cities’ models of improvement. Denver had gone through previous unsuccessful attempts at such programs...
Alumnus Matthew Stitt (MPA '12) was featured in Philadelphia Business Journal's '40 Under 40' list. Stitt, 26, was described by the publication as "an integral part of Philadelphia City Council President Darrell L. Clarke's finance and budget team," and praised for his analysis that ultimately delayed implementation of the city's Actual Value Initiative (AVI). The delay averted "a revenue...
Fels alumnus Dafan Zhang (MPA ’11) was recently profiled by Penn Current. Now a third-year at Penn Law, Zhang recounted immigrating to the US, overcoming homelessness, and his current run for the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. Read the full profile here.
Fels alumna Cindy Lonergan ('12) will be traversing the Asia-Pacific region to take part in a comprehensive, two-week educational dialogue and study tour program sponsored by the East-West Center. Lonergan, currently a civics and government teacher at Penn Manor High School, is one of only four Americans chosen to participate in the 2013 New Generation Seminar. Bringing together young...
Teach for America Greater Philly caught up with our very own Suzanne Hughes (MPA ’09). Celebrating ten years in the Cradle of Liberty, TFA interviewed Hughes about her experience in the corps. Nearly a decade since her time teaching at Roberto Clemente Middle School in North Philadelphia, Hughes is now Instructional Dean at Foundation Academy Intermediate Charter School in Trenton, New Jersey.
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