October 2019

THE 2019–2020 HKS ALUMNI BOARD: OUR YEAR STARTS WITH YOU! hksalumniboard2020@gmail.com

The HKS Alumni Board is your elected body. We’re 22 of your peers from across the street and around the world representing the alumni voice of the Kennedy School. Our job is to support your journey in staying connected to the passion and purpose; the commitment and community that fueled your Kennedy School experience and are hallmarks for your life. Here’s how we’re doing that work and how you can join us:

Effective Communications

Teresa Acuña MC/MPA 2017 heads up our communications working-group. Teresa, Steven Rahman MPP 2000, Ruma Samdani MC/MPA 2012, and Meredith Segal MC/MPA 2017 will ensure we communicate clearly and regularly with YOU and all parties throughout HKS who need our voice to be registered.

Supporting Alumni Worldwide

This year, Tami Kesselman MPA 1995 and Brooke Suter MC/MPA 2017 lead this effort with the great team of Ramaswami (Balu) Balasubramaniam MC/MPA 2010, Manuel Muñiz MPA 2011, and Corina Santangelo MPA 1999, lending support to our existing, worldwide Kennedy School Regional Networks and growing number of Shared Interest Groups (SIGs). Our pledge this year is to be a resource to you, and our Councils and SIGs regularly, as well as ensure better linkages between alumni networks. Jonathan Chang MC/MPA 2014 is our team lead with the Alumni Ambassadors program. Ambassadors work hard throughout the world to represent HKS in communities where there may be a smaller but significant presence of HKS alumni.

Public and Community Service

In 2020, the Kennedy School will celebrate Public and Community Service, and your Alumni Board will get the party started by celebrating service throughout the HKS alumni universe. An upcoming edition of Alumni Connect will be dedicated to the amazing public service efforts you are pursuing in hamlets, communities, cities, and nation-states large and small. Leila El Khatib MC/MPA 2013, our at-large rep, service lead, and “all other duties as required” angel, wants to showcase your outstanding service work. Want service at Reunion 2020? Check in and say YES!

Awards and Recognition

The Alumni Board’s signature event is the presentation of the annual Alumni Awards, which we give at Reunion each May. Carl Manlan MC/MPA 2012 and a super dedicated team including Ruma Samdani MC/MPA 2012, Frank Pearl MC/MPA 2011, Corina Santangelo MPA 1999, and Jonathan Chang MC/MPA 2014 are working right now to prepare the awards nomination process, recognizing alumni who grace the world and make it better. YOU can nominate an alumni peer this November for the Alumni Public Service Award, the Emerging Global Leader Award, the Julius E. Babbitt Memorial Volunteer Award, and the Digital Innovation Award. Formal networks and SIGS are eligible to be recognized for the Alumni Network Engagement Award.

Professional Development

Everybody needs a professional tune-up sooner or later, even after graduating from the illustrious Kennedy School. Cathryn Clüver Ashbrook MPA 2010 is leading our alumni community in a series of interactive video-chats to engage your collective wisdom about those “and now what?” moments after that first big job, or how to navigate work and family, or steps to take when it’s simply time for a full professional overhaul. If this sounds like you—maybe YOU want to star in one of Cathryn’s upcoming alumni-to-alumni professional connects!

Diversity and Inclusion

Deb Bailey MC/MPA 2015 ensures diversity and inclusion are threads throughout all of our alumni work. She’s working with Senior Associate Dean Robbin Chapman on an exciting academic joint project, approved by Dean Doug Elmendorf, that will result in a unique project bringing together HKS faculty, HBCU faculty, staff, students, and alumni. The Alumni board will also support efforts to diversify student recruitment and admissions processes.

Alumni Board Elections

Rudy Brioché MPP 2000 and Luma Al Saleh MC/MPA 2017 are on double duty as VP and co-leading the Elections Committee this year with Diego Osorio MC/MPA 2009, Meredith Segal MC/MPA 2017, and Teresa Acuña MC/MPA 2017. Soon, this team will reach out to you, looking for candidates interested in joining our board work. You will want to know that the leadership of the Alumni Board is also engaged in critical, behind-the-scenes work with faculty, staff, and administrators at HKS and across Harvard to ensure the strength of alumni voices for years to come.

Governance: Strengthening Alumni Voices

Jen Tutak MPA 2012 is on double duty as board secretary and, with Edson Kenji Kondo MPP 1990, is leading a global team of Alumni Board leaders on essential governance issues that will strengthen and further define our alumni voice at the Kennedy School. Emilian Papadopolous MPP 2008 is doubling as board at-large rep and heading up a tech project to strengthen our alumni platform. Finally, David Rosenberg MC/MPA 1986 and Rudy Brioché MPP 2000 do the heavy lifting, ensuring the HKS Alumni Board is connected with the Harvard Alumni Association.


But the year isn’t complete without YOU! You don’t need to be a board member to join one of these initiatives—just commitment and a willingness to connect and collaborate with a team on a consistent basis. Contact us directly with ANY IDEA or concern. Watch our weekly posts on the Harvard Kennedy School Alumni Facebook page. Nominate someone for an alumni award (coming in November) and sign up for the service project at Reunion 2020.

We’ll talk again in November,


Deborah Bailey, MC/MPA 2015
Chair, HKS Alumni Board 2019–2020