Thesis

A Woman's Place is In Governance: Public Trust and The Rise of Female Leadership

Public administrators must account for demographic changes and adapt to new challenges due to an increasingly diverse population in the United States, if the United States wishes to maintain its status of being a world leader in democratic principles. With the rise of racial equality in the workforce, gender equity has the potential to follow. Demographic changes bring a significant impact to any democratic society. When most people think of public administrators or politicians, they have an image of a male politician in mind, so where are women standing as public administrators? The topic of the causes of the lack of female leadership could affect the future of public administration greatly, but currently not much research on public trust and female leadership exists. This study uses a qualitative method consisting of in depth interviews to study public trust and female leaders in public agencies. Major topics include strategies they use to raise and maintain public trust, female leadership under the current administration, mentorship to continue moving to higher leadership positions, whether agency funding levels have changed due to changes in public trust, and the range of opportunities provided for them to achieve upward mobility.

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