Top 5 Government Jobs For Ashley Judd


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So Ashley Judd just finished her Masters of Public Administration at Harvard Kennedy School and is interested in public service.

As a public service, here are 5 jobs she might be good at:

1) CFC Chairperson – Why can all these cool charities have great celebrity spokesman and CFC still lack any real star power? Let Ashely Judd run it, increase our donations, and bring in celebrity friends.

2) Gov’t Recruiter – If Ashley Judd wants to work for the government, shouldn’t everyone. Let’s get Ashley out to all the college recruitment job fairs and tell people why they should come and work for government.

3) Mediator – Anyone who can mediate conflict in the Judd family is good in my book. She’d be a great mediator in any situation – Middle East conflict to OMB budget pass-backs.

4) Head of GAO or CBO – A large part of this job these days is to convince the general public to care what’s going in government (and not just frame it in politics). Can Ashley convince the American public about the growing debt
and convince politicians/citizens to take small meaningful actions on Social Security and Medicare to fix?

5) PSA Queen – Government does tons of public service announcements and lots of them aren’t coordinate and lots are only ok. Maybe we give Ashley Judd the full reign..Queen of PSA…A budget and she puts some Hollywood quality to our PSAs and promote them like crazy.

You? What do you think?

Also here are some other top 5’s of mine:
Top 5: Best Places to Have a Government Job
Top 5: Worst Places to Have a Government Job
Top 5: Tips on Teleworking
Top 5: Gov’t Shows That Should Exist
Top 5: Worst Things To Say in A Meeting
Top 5: Ways To Handle A Broing Meeting
Top 5: Signs You Need A New Job

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Daniel Bevarly

I’m a little concerned why she went to Harvard for her MPA instead of matriculating at the University of Kentucky’s excellent Martin School of Public Policy and Administration. After all, with all the support she gives to UK (posing for the soccer team’s calendar, screaming at officials during the NCAA tourney in her Big Blue jersey, hanging along the sidelines at UK football games), she would have been a great addition to the program’s Alumni.

Stephen Peteritas

I like option one, celebs = money, money = one of the government’s constant needs.

@Daniel Coach Cal can’t buy them all… sorry I can’t help it.

Sterling Whitehead

Gaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa. Sorry, I’m just drooling at that picture. What were we talking about?????

Sam Allgood

PSA Queen would be appropriate … she could be the poster child to demonstrate that celebrities can actually handle higher education.

Andrea Baker

Not to be a buzz kill, but she has had no experience in Government, only her degree. She needs to learn the system and be in a position to be mentored as well. One thing I dislike about celebrity is that its somehow seems to be a ticket to surpass rites of passage and just “get” things, sometimes not deserved. I am sure she worked hard at her degree, its a good school. I’ve spoken there. However, she needs to get her feet wet, in my eyes, she is a Government Greenhorn.

Kathleen Smith

Having done both non-profit and for profit work, I can say that the PSA option probably is a good start. The public tends to follow star power both good and bad.

Dannielle Blumenthal

Forgive me I thought this post was intended to be humorous as Hollywood glamour and DC – well, DC-ness – are an ironic juxtaposition. I.e. they don’t match. Maybe she could run for gov of California?

Bryan Conway JD, PMP

Good for Ashley, I’m sure the student who didn’t get into Harvard so that the university could generate publicity is pleased with missing out on the opportunity!

C Porche

In grad school the faculty sought and the philosophy of the school was to have a diversity of students by age education gender and experiences in the student population more than 18 years ago. I remember a lovely PhD dancer who really challenged us with incisive insights on approaching solutions to problems. ( She also felt with her mixology degree and a fully paid off VW beetle she would be captive of no situation) She strived to understand with an open passion to formulate solutions. She also could shift the dynamic of a discussion with words and her physical use of space. I never underestimate the capabilities that some one might bring the to the table……………. though there are some who are much more challenging than others. I find folks from non traditional disciplines that have excelled have a lot to teach us and I welcome their presence in public service.

Dannielle Blumenthal

I get the impression that Ashley Judd is smart and agree it is valuable to bring people with diverse backgrounds to public service. But (forgive me for being cynical) I am sure the admissions committee was aware that having her on campus would enhance the brand…similar to Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen going to NYU.

Also…is it me or is this a really odd discussion? Somehow it seemed to start as a joke and it became this kind of dead serious dialogue. What is different between Ashley Judd or anyone else?

Finally …seriously, it kind of offends me that some people have the red carpet rolled out for them at all times while others struggle for fair treatment. Everyone deserves a fair chance.

Peter Sperry

Why does everybody think she had the red carpet pulled out for her? Look at her bio. She was Phi Beta Kappa undergrad. She has demonstrated intelligence and skill in acting, marketing and business. Is there any reason to assume that she would not have been accepted if she had not been a celebrity? And somehow I doubt Harvard needs a celebrity to enhance their brand. Also, most universities, Harvard included, kind of like to include students who can afford to pay full freight tuition without financial assistance.

I do kind of wonder why she wanted an MPA. Even if she were able to use it to become city manager of an LA suburb, the pay still kind of lags Hollywood levels and her celebity status could easily nab her a cushy apointive position in local, state or federal government. Are we all too jaded to believe she might want to EARN a meaningful position by proving herself in a demanding academic program? Her politics are way too left wing for my tastes but she has demonstrated business as well as acting talent, appears truly dedicated to making a contribution and has done what it takes to acquire the requisite skills for public leadership. Any president, governor or mayor could do far worse than offer her a real (rather than token) position in their administration.


From the article I read about her degree in the NY Times, she was quite involved with a number of charities and wanted to be better educated on various public policy issues. It’s easy to bash her and Kal Penn (who worked at White House & Harold and Kumar) but face it…they turned down lots of money and other more frivolous things to care about important issues – pretty cool I say.

Dannielle Blumenthal

OK, I now agree with Harlan Wax that this is quite possibly the dumbest conversation I’ve ever seen on GovLoop. If I have to keep discussing this I’m going to start talking about hiring Eminem again. Also Lady Gaga. I wish Ashley Judd all the best.

Andrew Krzmarzick

Hi Everyone: here’s the New York Times article:

Selected excerpts:

– Ms. Judd says she attended Harvard not for the prestige — “compare, despair,” she says — but to become a more effective activist. “I didn’t go to Harvard Kennedy School to be approved of by anyone, but to immerse myself in some very serious, earnest, practical learning with people who have literally dedicated all they have to public service.”

– To her, going to Harvard sounded as realistic as “going to the moon.” A friend suggested she look up the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at the Kennedy School. Reading about the center’s work with exploited women, “I just began to weep,” she says. “I thought, this is my home, these are my people, this is where I’m meant to go.”

– She reels off favorite professors and courses, among them: Marshall Ganz and Bernard Steinberg, teaching moral leadership; Jacqueline Bhabha on human rights; Robert Kegan on psychological development in adults; and Diane Rosenfeld on gender violence (for anyone who still thinks she is a dilettante, Ms. Judd won a dean’s scholar award for her final paper in that class). She got through quantitative methods — a core requirement along with classes on management and leadership, democracy and political institutions…

– She has hardly had a moment to think about what she will do with her new degree. “I had nine final papers due between Easter and the end of reading period, and then it was graduation and the Indianapolis 500,” she says. But after a pause, she admits that she has thought a little bit beyond “Flypaper.” “One interesting idea is to possibly apply for a White House Fellows position,” Ms. Judd says. “That could be pretty cool.”

Dannielle Blumenthal

Ok now I get it. Thought the post was random. Really, wish her all the best. We can use all the talent and fresh thinking we can get.