Executive Leadership Institute - ELI


THE EXECUTIVE LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE was established in 1987 as a program dedicated to grooming African American managers for the rigors of executive positions in public service organizations. Understanding the array of critical problems faced by cities, counties, and states – the need for talented, energetic, creative, resourceful, and capable executives from diverse backgrounds is increasingly present. ELI was established to sharpen the skills and capabilities of an elite core of managers and administrators who have already demonstrated superior achievement in their careers as assistant city managers, department heads, bureau/division chiefs, and the like. This program is one of the few training institutes in the United States that offers a curriculum mixed with both academic-based theory and practitioner-based experience through partnerships with universities and cities throughout the county. The ability to compare the impacts of urban development, transportation policy, economic development strategies and other public policies in a select group of cities over an eight-month period is unique to ELI participants. Candidates also have an exceptional opportunity to interface with elected and appointed administrators from across the country who grapple with diverse public policy decisions daily, citizens who live in these communities, and universities that study and analyze public management application and theory.



Developed with the advice and counsel of current and former senior public administrators as well as faculty  at one of the nation’s most prestigious schools of public administration, the Institute curriculum is divided  into major and minor topics around core competency areas within the public administration profession.

Core Curriculum areas may include:
• Resource Allocation & Financial Management
• Economic Development & Planning
• Public Policy Development & Analysis
• Organizational Development
• Civic Engagement
• Data Analytics & Technology
• Leadership

Upon completion of the program, ELI candidates will receive a Professional Certificate in State and Local Government Leadership - from the Georgetown University Schools of Continuing Studies.


Upon selection, ELI candidates attend five Georgetown-run instructional sessions and two Kettering Foundation Learning Exchanges, scheduled over a five-month period. Successful completion of the Executive Institute curriculum requires attendance at all sessions. Applicants are expected to travel twice over the duration of the program: once to NFBPA’s Annual Conference (FORUM) and once to Georgetown University for the final Module and Graduation.

* Health and Wellness: All participants will need to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination in order to attend FORUM. Individuals will need to be fully vaccinated with a vaccine approved or approved for emergency use by the FDA. NFPBA continues to monitor guidelines for health safety measures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and local health departments. NFPBA will follow applicable federal, state and local laws, adapting NFPBA plans accordingly and sharing updates.

You may use the following links to download the
 ELI Brochure and the ELI application
If you would rather receive the application via email, please contact our office at (202) 408-9300 ext. 101 or send an email to adminservices@nfbpa.org.

    Letter of Reference Form      

    Employer Authorization Form      



Tuition for the Executive Leadership Institute is $11,000 which covers the cost for instruction, venues, and registration fees for NFBPA’s annual conference (FORUM). The total transportation and lodging costs for all program sessions and the annual conference are not included in the above fees. Tuition costs much be paid by December 1, 2021 Past ELI graduates have employed various strategies for securing sponsorship for participation in the program. The overwhelming majority of participants are sponsored by their local and state government employers. Others successfully supported their participation in the Institute through a combination of corporate, foundation, and personal funds. If accepted, NFBPA staff is available to provide.