“Ja’Nai is dedicated to public service and chooses to use her skills and abilities to ensure that government programs are run more efficiently and effictively for the citizens of Maryland,” wrote Asuntha Chiang-Smith, executive director of the governor’s subcabinet on Base Realignment and Closure, who recommended her for the honor. “She believes that delivery of public service is a tangible indicator of government effectiveness.”
Ms. Keith joined DHCD in the Office of the Secretary as a business performance specialist in 2009 after a year in the governor’s constituency office. She serves as the agency’s BRAC liasion, advising on housing matters as the subcabinet helped the state prepare for the influx of new workers from the military’s base realignment process. She also helps prepare several of the reports that the O’Malley administration considers critical to decision-making, including StateStat, RecoveryStat and Managing for Results.
She has a bachelor’s degree in international studies from Trinity Washington University and a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Baltimore.
“I’m very humbled and honored to be the recipient of such a prestigious award from the ASPA recognizing my contributions to the field public administration thus far (in my short tenure) in state government,” says Ms. Keith. “I am also grateful for the continued support from senior leadership, my supervisor Hazel Heeren and my colleagues here at DHCD. The opportunities for professional growth and the experience that I am gaining here at the department as I continue to advance in my field are immeasurable. DHCD is truly a great place to work.”