Mary Washington Named Bohnett LGBT Leadership Fellow at Harvard Kennedy Law

Mary Washington, Baltimore's representative of 43rd district in the House of Delegates, became the most recent recipient of The David Bohnett LGBT Leadership Fellows Program to attend the Senior Executives in State and Local Government Residential Program at Harvard University. The Bohnett Fellowship funds its fellows to attend Harvard Kennedy’s three-week intensive program. (See David Bohnnett Foundation: Grants for LGBT).

The program

operates as an interactive classroom, where faculty and participants work together on real-life case studies and learn from each other. One of the most frequently cited problems of public officials is how to create and engage in public discourse about difficult subjects. Participants will be in an environment where the classroom serves as a forum for raising difficult issues and practicing the skill of creating and maintaining a conversation that leads to change. (Read Bohnett Foundation executive director, Michael Fleming's IP profile).

Harvard holds two sessions annually. The first in June; the second is in July.

Now in its tenth year, more than 100 people have attended Harvard's three-week program through the fellowship. Many of program's attendees work on crucial issues "involving marriage and family equality and workplace protections for gays and lesbians," Washington told Baltimore Outloud in an interview.

Sounds great. So, who should apply to this thing?

In the Institute's perspective, "the strongest candidates are typically mid-career." Fellows who get the most from the program, they find, are those with upward of 15 years of professional experience. They discourage those with less than 10 from applying.

Candidates must also demonstrate "leadership and potential for further growth and development." While the overwhelming majority of fellowship winners have either been political officeholders, or otherwise employed by the government, they encourage folks who work in the nonprofit sector to apply as well.

Applicants must gain first acceptance at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government. From there, in order to receive the Fellowship, a board composed of program alumni, Institute staff, and representatives of their s most stalwart supporters like Bohnett award the money and access to this program in particular.

The Institute received $800,000 of continued support from The Bohnett Foundation for this fellowship in July. As a single admission runs about $11,500 soup-to-nuts, according to their website, it seems likely that the program will continue to flourish for some time.