Public management & finance

This field looks at the effectiveness, efficiency, and equity of government management and leadership, providing valuable insights into making government work better for everyone. Notable areas of the School of Public Affairs faculty expertise include local government, budget and finance, disaster and emergency management, healthy and sustainable communities, and social equity and representation in government. Our alumni serve in government positions across Colorado, the nation, and the world.


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Alumni stories

Our School of Public Affairs alumni make a huge impact in Colorado and beyond! Read their stories.


  • Coivid-Epidemiologist-850w

    MPA alumni Bookman and Butler share experiences of leading COVID responses in Colorado

    Sep 11, 2020 by Joan Fishburn
    At both the local and state level, School of Public Affairs alumni have been instrumental in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. Scott Bookman (MPA '15), Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment incident commander for COVID-19, and Geoff Butler (MPA '19), Battalion Chief, Poudre Valley Fire Authority, recently took some time to answer questions about their current roles addressing COVID-19 and how they have grown as leaders dealing with the challenges posed by the pandemic.
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  • DCLF Alumni Spotlight: Renzo Amaya

    Aug 4, 2020 by Guest Contributor
    Renzo Amaya, Health Navigation Workforce Specialist, Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment, shares his experiences of participating in the School of Public Affairs Denver Community Leadership Forum.
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Fiscal Implications of the COVID-19 Crisis for State and Local Governments (and You)

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Latest news on public management & finance

  • Deanne-Criswell

    Biden picks familiar faces for top roles at FEMA, CIAOpens in a new window

    Jan 15, 2021
    President-elect Joe Biden is nominating New York emergency department commissioner Deanne Criswell to serve as the Federal Emergency Management Agency administrator. Criswell, an alum of the Master of Public Administration program at the CU Denver School of Public Affairs, is the first woman nominated to head the agency.
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  • Alec-Garnett-AMPA-Alum-850w

    Alec Garnett, Colorado’s next House speaker, hopes you won’t think of himOpens in a new window

    Jan 11, 2021
    Colorado House of Representatives Alec Garnett poses for the portrait at the House chambers of Colorado State Capitol in Denver, Colorado on Thursday. November 12, 2020. Garnett, who is a CU Denver School of Public Affairs alumnus of the Accelerated Master of Public Administration program, will lead 73rd Colorado legislative session as speaker.
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  • Alan-Kennedy-Democratic presidential elector-850w

    Colorado Democratic electors cast nine votes for Joe BidenOpens in a new window

    Dec 14, 2020
    Colorado’s nine Democratic presidential electors cast their votes for Joe Biden at the state Capitol on Monday. First-time elector Alan Kennedy, an attorney and doctoral student at the CU Denver School of Public Affairs, said he hoped Monday’s nationwide vote brings acceptance of Biden’s presidential victory.
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  • The Pivot: How Governments Are Changing to Meet the Needs of Our Time

    Dec 11, 2020 by Emma Martz
    On December 4, the CU Denver School of Public Affairs hosted its First Friday event centered around how governments are changing to meet the needs of our time, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic. Comprised of experts from state, city, and county governments in Colorado, the panel took a deep dive into the pivots that organizations have made during the tumultuous year of 2020, what processes would continue, and their hopes for the future.
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  • Economic-Development-Class-Canon-City-850w

    Economic Development Class Strengthens Two Southern Colorado Communities to Come Out of COVID-19 Stronger Than Ever

    Nov 23, 2020 by Guest Contributor
    The School of Public Affairs Economic Development class has been credited by communities for providing an important service at this time of need. Read about how students and partners Downtown Colorado Inc. helped two Southern Colorado communities -- Cañon City and Rocky Ford -- adapt and help their small businesses, youth, and residents stay hopeful.
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  • What happened in our elections?

    Nov 20, 2020 by Emma Martz
    On November 6, the CU Denver School of Public Affairs hosted What happened in our elections?, its third installment of the First Fridays virtual event series, to unpack a range of topics from the presidential election (which had not yet been called at the time of the event) to the state and local ballot results. Moderator Paul Teske, Dean of the School of Public Affairs, was joined by Saja Hindi, reporter for The Denver Post; Mike Littwin, columnist for The Colorado Sun; and Sean Walsh, election consultant for Sean Walsh Consulting.
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  • Iman_Jodeh_Alumna_850w

    Iman Jodeh Is Colorado's First-Ever Muslim LawmakerOpens in a new window

    Nov 10, 2020
    Iman Jodeh earned her Master of Public Administration from the CU Denver School of Public Affairs in 2006.
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  • October First Friday: What Are We Voting On?

    Oct 20, 2020 by Emma Martz
    On October 6, the CU Denver School of Public Affairs hosted its second virtual First Friday on the topic of What Are We Voting On? Joined by an expert panel, the event was moderated by Paul Teske, Dean of the School of Public Affairs. The panelists were Michael Fields, Executive Director of Colorado Rising Action; Lynea Hansen, Senior Vice President of Strategies 360; and Andrew Kenney, Public Affairs Reporter for Colorado Public Radio. The discussion covered a range of topics from the upcoming presidential election to the state and local ballot amendments and proposals.
    Full story


Featured course

  • news-old-colorado-city-850w

    Economic development class forges connections in Old Colorado City

    Sep 21, 2020 by Guest Contributor
    Since 2017, students in Randy Harrison’s Economic Development class (PUAD 5630) have had the opportunity to engage with Colorado communities in an experience unlike any felt in a typical classroom. Through its partnership with Downtown Colorado, Inc., this CU Denver School of Public Affairs (SPA) course allows students to become project coordinators in a process known as the Colorado Challenge Program. Students connect with community members and experts in the field to establish a plan of work to engage public, private, and non-profit partners in addressing a significant community challenge over the course of their semester. Through their partnership, SPA students and DCI have connected with and created initiatives for almost 30 Colorado communities.
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