Eight senior public officials from state and local governments across Colorado have been selected to attend a three-week program at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, as members of Gates Family Foundation’s 41st class of Harvard Fellows.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Harvard program will not be held in 2020, so the selected fellows will be will be given the option to attend the Kennedy School in the summer of 2021.

Since 1980, Gates has sponsored more than 270 of Colorado’s top civic leaders to participate in the Kennedy School’s Senior Executives in State and Local Government Program. The program operates as an interactive classroom, where fellows work with peers and Harvard faculty to analyze case studies of real issues, find solutions to complex problems, and work together and learn from each other.

The 2020 Gates Family Foundation Harvard Fellows are:

  • Evelyn Baker, Deputy Executive Director, Community Planning and Development, City and County of Denver
  • Kristin Bronson, City Attorney, City and County of Denver
  • Robin Brown, Executive Director, Grand Junction Economic Partnership
  • Hilary Cooper, Commissioner, San Miguel County
  • Shawn Gullixson, President, Board of Education, Colorado Springs School District 11
  • Crestina Martinez, Chief of Staff, Colorado Governor’s Office
  • Bethleen McCall, Council Member, City of Yuma
  • Ben Tisdel, Commissioner, Ouray County

Congratulations to all of these dedicated civic leaders, who were selected from among a competitive group of 54 experienced applicants. In addition, Rachel Marion, Senior Director of Government Affairs, Denver International Airport, was selected as an alternate for the 2020 cohort.

Each spring, Gates invites elected, appointed, and career officials from state and local governments across Colorado to apply to the Kennedy School program. The Gates Fellowship pays all but a small portion of the $16,500 total program cost — which includes tuition, housing, curricular materials, and most meals. Participants or their employers must fund the balance. More information is here.