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Imagine yourself in public service

Lead for North Carolina connects promising young leaders with our state’s local governments. This innovative fellowship program supports communities and strengthens public institutions, while creating a new generation of extraordinary public servants.

Be the first to know when applications open for next year’s cohort (2025-2026).
Sign up now as a fellow or government host!

May 29, 2024

WHQR sat down with Talula Dechev, a Lead for NC fellow based in Columbus County, to talk about her work in water infrastructure and rental inspections.

January 19, 2024

The first cohort of Lead for North Carolina Fellows made a splash in communities across the state, launching meaningful projects with real-world impact.

January 19, 2024

Fellow Nick Boyd’s work with the Community Rating System program earned recognition for reducing flood insurance premiums for county homeowners.

Ania Hairston
From a very young age, I’ve had a passion for advocating for the wellbeing of others. I believe this passion has manifested itself in my pursuit of a career in government.

Ania Hairston is working with an American Rescue Plan (ARP) grant vendor for the NC League of Municipalities. The League provides cybersecurity, legal, grant, and communications ARP services to non-entitlement units. Hairston monitors the grant service line and coordinates with the vendor to connect towns across the state with the services they need in a timely way.

Ryan Oathout
Lead for North Carolina is a perfect match for me, because it allows me to contribute to local communities in my beloved home state.

Ryan Oathout works on the Town of Wendell’s Community-Wide Housing, Maintenance, and Ownership program, which assists residents in identifying housing issues, promotes safety and proper maintenance, and explores town improvements aligned with the Board of Commissioners’ strategic plan.