Innovation & Change Award

Haneen Aljuhani, Kelsey Boyd, Anna Cook, Eniko Csikos, Nikki Dean, Brianne Dorsey, Sophie Idilbi, Lam-Anh Le, Dawn McAvoy, Bonnie Norris, Richelle Plater, George Reese, and Jennifer Tether

Key Executive Leadership Program Team

The Key Executive Leadership Programs is considered the “gold standard” in leadership development for federal agencies and provides executive education to public sector leaders at all levels of government.

When the COVID pandemic forced AU and much of the US to quarantine and lockdown, the program abruptly halted. Not able to provide programming in the traditional in-person format, Key was at risk of losing many of its federal clients, reputation, and the external revenue generated by the program. Pivoting to a virtual delivery format was unprecedented as faculty, and federal clients were resistant to virtual programming. Managing government security and network firewalls was a tremendous challenge as each agency had its preferred virtual and approved platform. Additionally, to remain compliant with contracts and the federal fiscal budget, the 2020 programming had to be completed by the end of the year.

The challenges created purpose and opportunities to innovate and take risks. The Key team thrived and excelled in collaboration, support, and empathy. The team delivered more than 3,800 hours of class programming and support and 2,400 hours of executive coaching between May - December 2020 by providing content in a virtual delivery format on Zoom before the university adopted Zoom as its virtual platform. The Key program experienced zero attrition and attracted new clients, outpacing all financial expectations.

Congratulations to the Key Executive Leadership Program team for being selected as the 2021 Innovation and Change Award recipients, and thank you for all that you do for American University.

Innovation and Change Award Nominees

Congratulations to the 2021 Innovation and Change Award nominees!

Although the nominees were not selected for this year's award, their outstanding work did not go unnoticed. Thank you for all you do!

  • Natasha Abel
  • Sumaira Akber
  • Chelsey Anderson
  • Angela Bailey
  • Wyatt BalaEddy
  • Tara Barnett
  • Malini Basdeo
  • Sara Biggs
  • Daniel Birichi
  • Leah Brady
  • Nicole Bresnahan
  • Shawna Bruell
  • Sean A. Casey
  • Karyn Cassella
  • Angela Catanzano
  • Adam Christensen
  • Jessica Connaghan
  • Edythe-Anne Cook
  • Elizabeth Cowgill
  • Kit Crawford Jr.
  • Traci Crockett
  • Hannah Dale
  • Jacquelin Darby
  • Amit Dhawan
  • Michelle Eller
  • Jimmy Ellis
  • Donna M. Femenella
  • Terry Fernandez
  • Tara Flakker
  • Mark Freedman
  • Karen Froslid Jones
  • Kelley Gardner
  • Esther Gavilan
  • Marcos Goldchain
  • Austin Grasty
  • Neisha-Anne Green
  • Mariam Gregorian
  • Tiana Hakimzadeh
  • Selena Healey
  • Lauren Hegedus
  • Shane Hickey
  • Andrew Hoffmann
  • Myles Hungerford
  • Joy Elisebeth Hunter
  • Dave Jean
  • Michele Jenkins
  • Ellen Jimenez
  • Tremaine Johns
  • Christiana Kasner
  • Robert Kelshian
  • Kirill Lobachyov
  • Alex MacKintosh
  • Evelyn Magana
  • Jean McGee
  • Melissa Meulman
  • Vaughn Miller
  • Danise Mok
  • Tariq Nadim
  • Elizabeth Neville
  • Minh-Tuan Nguyen
  • Jacquelyn Nuber
  • Beth O'Brien
  • Brooke Olsen
  • Robert Ortega
  • Andrea Paredes-Herrera
  • Kativa Parker
  • India Pasiuk
  • Angela Petras
  • Carlita Pitts
  • Emily Priborkin
  • Kayla Reid
  • Brittani Riddle
  • Alyssa Rubio
  • Natalie Rusch
  • Brian Lee-Sang
  • Amy Savage
  • Dhivya Sivasankkar
  • Matthew Smith
  • Rebekah Smith
  • Jonathon Sorge
  • Kay Summers
  • Nick Talisman
  • Amanda Taylor
  • Liam Toohey
  • Jeffrey Volkmann
  • Kristina Whitchurch
  • Shatina Williams
  • Ethan Willing
  • Kelvin Wilson
  • Cassandra Zacharkiw
  • Amy Zawada
  • Julia Zito