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Navarro Brown to lead search for Fellows candidates

Alumni of Sacramento State’s Capital Fellows Programs have gone on to become judges, legislators, and members of Congress. They are local government officials and corporate executives, leaders of community organizations, and directors of nonprofit groups.

Nadia Esperanza Navarro Brown is in charge of finding the next generation of those leaders for Capital Fellows, which sponsors public policy fellowships within the California State Senate and Assembly and the Executive and Judicial branches of government.

Navarro Brown is the new Outreach and Special Projects coordinator for Capital Fellows, and is responsible for developing and implementing efforts to find potential candidates for the nationally recognized programs.

Capital Fellows places college graduates who have an interest in public service in some of the highest levels of state government, where they assist state legislators, executive staffs, and court administrators with a broad range of policy issues and projects. The program is administered by Sac State’s Center for California Studies, which has offices at the university’s downtown and main campuses.

Notable Capital Fellows alums include California State Controller Betty Yee; Congressman Kevin McCarthy; and Sacramento Superior Court Judge Jennifer Rockwell. More than half of California state legislators have current or former Fellows on their staffs.

The fellowships, which last 10 or 11 months, are highly competitive, said Navarro Brown. “Last year we received over 1,200 applications,” she said. Only about 5 percent of applicants are chosen.

“We are looking for a large, diverse applicant pool of engaged people interested in working in and learning about public service and state government in California,” said Megan Thorall, director of the Judicial Fellowship Program.

Navarro Brown is responsible for developing and coordinating the annual outreach effort for Capital Fellows, identifying and reaching out to potential candidates across the nation.

Prior to her current role, Navarro Brown served as coordinator for the Senate Fellows Program. She holds Bachelor’s degrees in Foreign Languages and Education and an Associate Degree in Criminal Justice, all from New Mexico State University.

Each year, the program selects 18 Fellows each in the Executive, Senate, and Assembly fellowship programs and 10 in the Judicial fellowship program.

Applicants must have completed an undergraduate degree in any major, be at least 20 years old, and have a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 2.5 or higher.

“Writing skills are very important, as well as activities that reflect public service and policy interests,” said Navarro Brown.

The deadline to apply to be a Capital Fellow is Feb. 3.

For more information, visit https://www.csus.edu/center/center-california-studies/capital-fellows.html

By Cynthia Hubert

Nadia Esperanza Navarro Brown portrait

Nadia Esperanza Navarro Brown