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Become a White House Fellow ... and Make a Difference

Jeff Hall

Posted on May 20, 2019 20:30

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The White House Fellows is a uniquely nonpartisan program that gives "future leader" types a year-long exposure to the uppermost levels of the federal government.

Many years ago, when I was 34, I spent a year doing something called a White House Fellowship. I got to work at the White House for a year – and loved every minute of it.

The White House Fellows program identifies “future leader types” and gives them a year-long, very intense exposure to the inner workings of the federal government.

The hope is that those who get selected will learn a lot about government and leadership -- and then “pay it forward” later in life.

White House Fellows include lawyers, doctors, journalists, businesspeople, military officers, ballet dancers – a reflection of our country at large. The program was started by LBJ in 1964.

Last month, members of the White House Fellows alumni group met in Atlanta, at the Carter Center. We listened to Stu Eizenstat (Jimmy Carter’s chief domestic policy adviser) and retired U.S. Senator Sam Nunn.

Tom Johnson, former publisher of the Los Angeles Times and later, president of CNN, was there (he lives in Atlanta now; he’s originally from Macon, GA). Tom was a White House Fellow back in 1965-66.

Sanjay Gupta, Margarita Colmenares and Jeff Hall.

Sanjay Gupta (pictured here in Atlanta alongside White House Fellow alumni Margarita Colmenares and Jeff Hall) is chief medical correspondent at CNN. He was a White House Fellow, too.

One of the truly great things about the White House Fellows program is that it is completely nonpartisan. While applying to become a White House Fellow – and while serving – nobody asks about your personal politics.  It is common for Democrats to work in Republican administrations, and vice versa.

Tom Johnson, former White House Fellow.


The idea of nonpartisanship has always felt “right” to me.  We all need to get along if we are going to solve the problems facing our nation. 

For this reason, when I started the Brentwood News, a community newspaper here in West LA, I swore we’d remain politically neutral.  I did the same with THE LATEST.

I think our political neutrality is the thing people like best about TheLatest.com – you can see the same story as portrayed  by media outlets from across the spectrum, and all points of view are welcome.

So if you like the fact TheLatest.com is politically neutral, you have the White House Fellows to thank for that.

If you know someone who might enjoy spending a year working at the uppermost levels of the federal government, pass along this article so he or she can learn about the White House Fellows program.

The average age of a White House Fellow while serving their year in Washington is 34. People often learn about the program at an earlier age and tuck that knowledge away for future reference.  I first heard about the program while a sophomore in college.

If you know of anyone who would like to discuss the White House Fellows program with me personally, I’d be delighted to do that.  I can’t say enough good things about the experience. Email me at [email protected].com.

Jeff Hall

Posted on May 20, 2019 20:30

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