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News Release

Wednesday, March 24, 2004
Contact: Brendan LaCivita
Tel: 202-606-2402

OPM Director Kay Coles James Announces Selection of Finalists for the New Presidential Management Fellows Program

Washington, D.C. – - U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Director Kay Coles James today announced the names of finalists for the new Presidential Management Fellows (PMF) program. Seven-hundred individuals have been selected as finalists in the prestigious PMF program. Executive branch agencies have until the end of December 2004 to announce their selection of finalists as fellows into the PMF program.

"These individuals have been selected as PMF finalists because they have demonstrated not only academic excellence and outstanding leadership skills, but also the intense desire to serve their country," remarked James. "A love of country and a true calling to civil service distinguishes those seeking to be an active part of the PMF team."

As under the previous Presidential Management Intern (PMI) program, which inspired the new and highly advanced PMF program, academic leaders from the nation's top graduate schools receive PMF nomination requests from their graduating students who have demonstrated an interest in and a commitment to leadership in the federal civil service. Selection is based on either or both academic excellence and demonstrated leadership ability. Due to the competitive nature of the program, only the best qualified of these eligible students are nominated by their respective academic leadership.

From the original 2,503 nominations, 700 were selected by OPM as finalists after successfully completing a rigorous review and selection process. These finalists have been invited to participate in a job fair this April in Washington, D.C. The PMF job fair is one of OPM's showcase events, bringing PMF's together with agency hiring officials representing the entire executive branch to recruit, select, and hire graduate-level talent for federal civil service.

"Today is a great day for federal agencies," remarked James. "They soon will have a chance to interview and hire some of the brightest graduate students in the country. Because of the new PMF program, this very special group of people will have expanded opportunities for development as this country's future leaders."

In a November 2003 Executive Order, President George W. Bush instituted the new PMF program in place of the PMI program by fundamentally transforming the initiative, eliminating the cap present under the old PMI program, expanding participation to all executive branch agencies, and making the program more competitive by strengthening program standards and including demonstrated leadership potential as a criterion.

The president's Executive Order also created the Senior Presidential Management Fellows (SPMF) program. The SPMF is a mid-level, national recruitment program designed to help agencies meet their strategic human capital plans and fulfill succession planning needs.

"It has been our goal to target the new PMF program and to more strategically align it with today's work force needs," stated James. "The new PMF program is one of many initiatives to modernize and expand federal leadership development programs in order to address the human capital needs of the federal government outlined in President Bush's Management Agenda.

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OPM leads and serves the Federal Government in enterprise human resources management by delivering policies and services to achieve a trusted, effective civilian workforce. By Empowering Excellence in Government through Great People, we provide leadership and support to U.S. agencies on issues including human resources policy and oversight, background investigations, federal employee benefits, retirement services, guidance on labor-management relations, and programs to improve workforce performance. For more information, visit or follow OPM on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn.

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