Jeanna Ballard


Research Specialist
Phone: (815)753-5310

Jeanna Ballard, MPA Public Management and Training/Policy Associate, has been with CGS since January 2017. She is helping with the Center’s governmental public management technical assistance and training programs and activities. Projects include strategic planning, public management methods and approaches, review and assistance; organizational structure and staffing analyses, public policy analysis, and other governmental data analysis. Other work includes process design and execution, project management, stakeholder input gathering, coordinating surveys, strategic planning exercises, data collection, distilling themes and findings from qualitative and quantitative information sources important to stakeholders, and generating verbal and written reports. 

Prior to joining CGS, Jeanna was a graduate student and earned a dual Master’s Degree in Public Administration via joint studies at both NIU and Renmin University of China in Beijing. She served as a graduate assistant in NIU’s MPA program last fall, an administrative intern in Algonquin in 2014-15, intern for Kane County Health Department in 2014, and a Congressional intern in the U.S. House in 2013. She was the recipient of the Distinguished Manuscript Award for excellence in research design, data collection, policy/program analysis and expository presentation, the Model Public Administrator Award for outstanding leadership and performance as a pre-career administrator in comparative public service. She also received the James M. Banovetz Fellowship Award and NIU Outstanding Women Student Award.

Jeanna wants people to know that CGS enriches organizations and communities by offering hands-on assistance to help organizations achieve their purpose and pursue a direction towards positive change and success. Outside of CGS, she loves to travel. As an undergraduate student she spent a semester studying in Canterbury, England, and as a graduate student she spent two semesters studying in Beijing, China. She said she has been fortunate enough to travel to 12 countries spanning across three continents. Her favorite experience was hiking seven hours to camp overnight on the Great Wall of China. Quoting Saint Augustine, Jeanna said, “I believe the world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.”