People

Phil Selden, MPA '04

September 26, 2016

Please describe your organization and its mission.

The United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland serves nearly six million residents throughout the state of Maryland.  The U.S. Attorney’s Office works to promote the rule of law, punish criminals, improve the security and overall wellbeing of communities, provide equal justice to all citizens, deter crime and safeguard government and personal property.  

What is your current role for your organization?

I am Assistant United States Attorney assigned to the Maryland United States Attorney’s Office's Fraud and Public Corruption Section.  During my years as a federal prosecutor I have prosecuted cases involving public corruption as well as white-collar crime involving public officials and corporate executives.  I have also prosecuted violent crimes including first degree murder, domestic violence targeting women and children and the elderly, and violence at public schools.  In addition, I have also taught at Harvard Law School, the University of Maryland Carey School of Law and Howard University School of Law.

How has Fels helped you in your career so far?

With Fels’ focus on local and state government management coupled with the emphasis on empowering public leaders to innovate, I have been able to serve as a prosecutor who seeks more than just to respond to crime but, more importantly, to prevent its occurrence.  Whether it’s managing the steps necessary to prosecute a fifty million dollar fraud against the government or a complex case of violence at a public school, Fels has provided me with the tools for success.

What was your favorite Fels course and why?

My favorite Fels’ course was “Dealing with the Media.”  This course, taught by Marjorie Margolies, former United States Congresswoman and the current President of Women’s Campaign International, was interesting in that it analyzed the ways in which politics and the media interact.  

What advice do you have for incoming students?

Tackle all of your Fels courses with enthusiasm and a respect for the fact that you are a future public servant.  

Anything else you would like to share?

When I am not “putting out fires” as a federal prosecutor or law professor I also serve the residents of Montgomery County, Maryland as a firefighter and emergency medical technician.

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Contact Information

Fels Institute of Government
University of Pennsylvania
3814 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104

Phone: (215) 898-2600
Fax: (215) 746-2829

felsinstitute@sas.upenn.edu