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LEAD Albania

LEAD Albania, a fellowship program similar to the White House Fellows Program, aims to provide gifted young Albanian professionals with first-hand experience in the process of governing Albania.  Fellows are assigned to senior positions within the Prime Ministry, Office of the President, Ministries, and Municipality of Tirana. The Fellowship experience is supported by an educational component where Fellows participate in seminars on: European integration, public policy, decision making, foreign policy, security policy, leadership, and soft skills development. The program envisions that Fellows will not only learn in their positions but that they will also contribute significantly to the productivity, efficiency and innovativeness of the host institutions. Five years from its successful implementation, the AADF approved the extension of the LEAD program to a second five-year period, budgeted at $3.2 Million and making it an overall investment of $5.7 Million.

About

Engagement in the work of the central government agencies is at the heart of the LEAD Albania program. Fellows will spend a year as full-time, paid advisers or assistants to the top officials of the Prime Ministry, Ministries, the Office of the President, and the Municipality of Tirana. Fellows may also be required to work on issues outside of their area of expertise. Responsibilities can be wide ranging and will be defined in the job description developed by the AADF and each host institution prior to placement of the Fellow. Fellows may be required to undertake domestic and international travel as part of their assignment and for learning purposes.

The list of positions for Fellows may vary from year to year. The number of Fellows selected will also depend on the quality of applications. The year-long Fellowship begins in the fall of each year.

The LEAD Albania Program will pay each Fellow a salary and benefits based on the pay scale of the agency where they are placed. Fellows will not be permitted to have additional employment during their year of government service. In return for the privilege of participating in the Program, Fellows will be expected to apply what they have learned by contributing to the nation as leaders in their respective communities, professions, and in public service. Fellows will be expected to return to their former occupations or undertake new career paths with the attained experience in public policy. Participants will be better prepared to contribute to national affairs, thereby fulfilling the mission of the program.

Host Institutions

Prime Minister’s Office, Ministries, Office of the President and Tirana Municipality offer positions for the fellows. The Albanian-American Development Foundation has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with each of these institutions.

During the application process, Fellows are asked to choose the institution where they prefer to be placed. If selected as a finalist, the fellow will be recommended as an adviser to the top ranking official of the respective institution.

Current Class

The 2020-2021 Class of LEAD Albania Fellows

Albana Karapanco

Albana Karapanço graduated from Faculty of Law, University of Tirana in 2010 and is an Advocate at the Albanian National Chamber of Advocates since 2013. She holds a Double LL.M. in International and Trade Law from the University of New York Tirana and the University of Greenwich London. Albana obtained her LL.M. Degree in International Business Law from Central European University, Budapest, Hungary, in 2015. She is a doctoral candidate in International Business Law Program at the same university. As a doctoral candidate she was awarded scholarships, grants and visiting scholar positions at: The International Institute for the Unification of Private Law (UNIDROIT) in Rome, Columbia Law School in New York, Harris Manchester College University of Oxford, University Carlos III de Madrid. She was an academic mentor in the Romani Studies Program at Central European University and a Coach of the University Vis Moot. Albana worked as a lawyer in the legal and human resources department of SIGAL UNIQA Group AUSTRIA sh.a., SiCRED sh.a. and Tranzit sh.p.k . In 2019, she served as a legal intern at DLA Piper Posztl, Nemescsói, Györfi-Tóth and Partners, Budapest Hungary. Albana was a Visiting Lecturer for Company Law course at the University of New York Tirana in 2016 and 2018. Host Institution: Ministry of Finance and Economy

Arnisa Tepelia

Arnisa Tepelija holds a Bachelor Degree and a Master of Science Degree in law at the University of Tirana, a period during which time she spent a semester as an Erasmus Mundus student in Ghent University in Belgium, specializing in European Law. Subsequently she graduated with summa cum laude in the Trilingual Master: Advanced European and International Studies from CIFE- Centre International de Formation Européenne, in Nice, Berlin and Rome. In the frame of the International Parliamentary Scholarship (IPS), Arnisa did her internship in the German Bundestag where she assisted daily the office of an MP and received training of political formation. Since 2015 Arnisa has been working with EU- related projects with the GIZ, the EU Delegation in Albania, while recently she was engaged as an expert with IOM – the UN Migration Agency. She is an expert, researcher and author of many papers related to EU integration and rule of law issues while being active and engaged with the civil society. Host Institution: Ministry of Justice

Dhurata Milori

Dhurata Milori graduated in Political Science from the Faculty of Social Sciences and in Law from the Faculty of Law at the University of Tirana. She has a Master’s degree in European Studies from the Comenius University in Bratislava. Dhurata Milori holds a PhD in Legislation and European Union Institutions from the Institute of European Studies at the University of Tirana. She has participated in the academic programme “Southeast Europe and the EU”, organized by the College of Europe, the European Fund for the Balkans and the TRANSFUSE Association. Dhurata has five years of experience as a lecturer at the Department of Political Science at the University of Tirana. For three years she has been a project staff in the Jean Monnet Module, funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union active as a lecturer of European Integration, scientific co-editor, co-author and part of scientific committees. She has five years of experience in public administration, at the Albanian Civil Aviation Authority. Dhurata has been a speaker to national and international scientific conferences related to her fields of interest. Host Institution: Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs

Elire Mancaj

Elirë Mançaj is an architect focused on cultural heritage and tourism development. Her professional career reflects her strong interest in preservation, adaptive reuse and giving life to deteriorated historical buildings and sites. Elirë has 5 years of professional experience in large-scale revitalization, restoration and urban upgrading projects in historical centers, UNESCO heritage districts and archaeological sites. Her work at Atelier 4 as a project coordinator and architect consisted in the restoration of Vlora and Berat historical centers. Through AADF’s 6-month internship program she worked as an architect at MSR Design in Minneapolis Minnesota. She holds a master’s degree in architecture from the Polytechnic University of Tirana. Elirë believes that architecture can create spaces that inspire and help to understand the metamorphosis of a place by uncovering its historical layers and identifying values. She aims to make positive and sustainable changes in the community. Host Institution: Ministry of Culture

Moltine Prebibaj

Moltinë Prebibaj holds a Master of Science’s Degree in Plant Production from the Agricultural University of Tirana. In 2017, through the Rotary Global Grant Scholarship she pursued her second Master’s Degree in Mediterranean Organic Agriculture at CIHEAM-Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Bari and LUM Jean Monnet University, in Italy. She has obtained several certificates awarded by UNITAR, GIZ, Danone, PAGE and UN Environment Programme. Moltine has worked as a Visiting Lecturer of Plant Physiology at the Agricultural University of Tirana, for 5 years while she was involved in research and as a co-author of several scientific papers. Moltinë has 4 years of management and public relations experience in the private sector. Since 2019, as a Rotary member, Moltinë is an active part of the community. She is focused on sustainable development of organic agriculture, implementation of European quality schemes for the enhancement of Albanian products for rural sustainable development and food safety. Host Institution: Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development

Rodon Miraj

Rodon Miraj has recently graduated at University College London with a Master of Public Administration on the topic of “Energy, Technology and Climate Policy”, facilitated by the UK Foreign Office “Chevening” scholarship. He is experienced in policymaking in the energy field at national level. Rodon has worked at the Ministry of Energy of Albania dealing with strategy, national policy and action plans of Energy Efficiency, Renewable Energy and Climate. Later he worked at the Energy Community Secretariat in Vienna at the Energy Efficiency Sector, where he monitored the legal compliance of Contracting Parties with the Energy Directives of the EU. He has a strong technical background, as an Environmental Engineer with a Master of Science on Energy, issued by the Polytechnic University of Tirana. Rodon has also authored and co-authored research papers on biogas production, energy performance in public buildings and awareness of climate change in young people of the region. Host Institution: Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy

Rovena Elmazi

Rovena Elmazi received her Bachelor of Laws degree from the Faculty of Law at the University of Tirana. She holds a Master’s degree in Public Law, with an expertise in Albanian Public Procurement Legislation as compared to the EU legislation. Rovena also received a Bachelor and Master’s degree from the Academy of Physical Education and Sport “Vojo Kushi”. From 2018, she is pursuing her doctoral studies at the National Sports Academy “Vassil Levski”, Bulgaria, in the field of Theory and Methodology of Sports Sciences. Her research activity is focused in the field of Sports Organization and Management. Rovena has a long experience as a university lecturer, teaching the subjects of Organization and Management of Physical Activity, Recreation and Tourism in the Department of Organization and Management at the Sports University of Tirana. Rovena is distinguished for her commitment and participation in volunteering activities related to sport, in specific those dedicated to children. Alongside her academic experience, comprising responsibilities as a project manager for a number of projects, and her being the author of various articles in the field of Sports Management, Rovena also has a long career as an elite athlete. Hosting Institution: Ministry of Education, Sport and Youth

Teuta Turani

Teuta Turani holds a Master of Public Policy from Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree in Business Economics from the University of Venice. She has previously worked at the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) in Basel and the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) in Luxembourg, where she conducted research and policy work on topics relevant to central banks and international lenders of last resort. At Harvard, she worked at the Center for International Development (CID) and was a Teaching Assistant in Econometrics and Finance; she was granted the Dean’s Award for Excellence in Student Teaching and the Mossavar-Rahmani Center research grant. Teuta was a Bloomberg-Harvard fellow in Alabama (US), where she advised local government officials on e-commerce tax revenues. She has previously spent time in the Middle East and the Balkans, working on economic development and peacebuilding initiatives. Host Institution: Ministry of Finance and Economy.

Alumni

Admir Malaj – Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth

Bledar Dervishaj – Ministry of Justice

Dritan Fino – Ministry of Finance

Eduart Gjokutaj – Ministry of Finance

Elona Bano –  President’s Office

Ergis Sefa – Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth

Krislen Keri – Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure

Ledio Braho – President’s Office

Qamil Dika – Municipality of Tirana

Sokol Muça – Ministry of Education and Sport

Adanela Musaraj – Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Water Management

Besjona Mehmetaj (Dede) – Ministry of Education and Sport

Edmond Ahmeti – Ministry of Culture

Endri Mykaj – Prime Minister’s Office

Erton Graceni – Prime Minister’s Office

Gilbert Vigani – Municipality of Tirana

Julinda Mansaku – Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure

Sokol Bardhi – Ministry of Interior

Ujvara Ponari – Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Bruxhilda Kito – Ministry of Interior

Dritan Palnikaj – Prime Minister’s Office

Ekflodia Leskaj – Ministry of Economic Development, Tourism, Trade and Entrepreneurship

Enton Duro – Ministry of Finance

Gerion Dhimo – State Minister for Innovation and Public Administration

Jonila Gabrani – Ministry of Health

Klodiana Beshku – Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Lumturi Hoxha – Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure

Marsida Duli – Ministry of Health

Alban Lila – Ministry of Economic Development, Tourism, Trade and Entrepreneurship

Soana Jaupllari – Ministry of Economic Development, Tourism, Trade and Entrepreneurship

Albana Hana – Ministry of Justice

Elfrida Bino – Ministry of Energy and Industry

Sabina Juka – Ministry of European Integration

Sonila Turshilla – Ministry of European Integration

Sashenka Lleshaj – Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Emiljano Kaziaj – Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth

Enkelejda Hamzaj – Municipality of Tirana

Besarta Vladi – State Minister of Innovation and Public Administration

Esmeralda Byberi – Municipality of Tirana

Nita Shala- Ministry of Internal Affairs

Jonida Burba – Ministry of Internal Affairs

Bledar Qalliu – Ministry for Europe and of Foreign Affairs

Doriana Matraku – Ministry of Education and Sport

Elena Pici – Prime Minister’s Office

Elkjana Gjipali – Ministry of Culture

Sidrit Tako – Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure

Ardit Cami – Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure

Orjola Shahaj – Ministry of Health and Social Protection

Besnik Maho – Ministry of Justice
Eltion Meka – Ministry for Europe and of Foreign Affairs
Enyal Lani – Ministry of Health and Social Protection
Ermal Telha – Ministry of Tourism and Environment
Eugena Topi – Ministry of Finance and Economy
Irola Andoni – Municipality of Tirana
Manjola Stefani – Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development
Oerd Bej – Ministry of Education, Sport and Youth
Oltion Pengu – Prime Minister’s Office
Valbona Seranaj – Municipality of Tirana

Amarildo Çeka – Ministry of Health and Social Protection
Anisa Duraj – Ministry of Culture
Anjeza Xhaferaj – Prime Minister’s Office
Bora Ylli – Ministry of Culture
Desara Dushi – Ministry of Justice
Elona Hasko – Ministry of Education, Sport and Youth
Fabjola Arapi – Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development
Haris Vongli – The Presidential Office
Irena Myzeqari – Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs
Jonid Jorgji – Municipality of Tirana
Rei Naçe – Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy
Zerina Bruci –  Prime Minister’s Office

Selection

The LEAD Albania program management and the selection commission will look into the following criteria when selecting Fellows:

  • A record of remarkable professional achievement early in one’s career.
  • Evidence of leadership skills and the potential for further growth.
  • A demonstrated commitment to public service.
  • The skills to succeed at the highest levels of the government, and the ability to work effectively as part of a team.

Other qualities include:

  • Exceptional writing ability
  • Foreign language skills
  • Positive attitude
  • Strong management skills
  • Very good interpersonal skills
  • Level of expertise in the proposed focus area

Eligibility criteria

  • Applicants must be Albanian citizens (dual citizenship is also acceptable).
  • Applicants must have completed their undergraduate education. Completion of graduate and postgraduate studies may be of significant advantage.
  • Preferably, applicants will have a minimum of 5 years of post-graduate work experience. In case of a completed PhD, the preferred minimum is 3 years.
  • Employees of the central government and the President Office are not eligible.
  • There are no age restrictions. However, the Fellowship Program was created to give selected applicants the experience of government service early in their careers.

Selection Commission

The Selection Commission for the LEAD Albania Program is composed of two AADF representatives and three outstanding citizens who represent a different range of backgrounds, interests, and professions. The Commission interviews selected candidates from the first round and then recommends those individuals it finds most qualified to host institutions for appointment as Fellows.

 

FAQ

What is the LEAD Albania Program?

The LEAD Albania Program (Leadership Experience And Development) is an initiative of the AADF for leadership development. The concept of the program is derived from the White House Fellows Program in the United States. Its purpose is to provide gifted young Albanian professionals with first-hand experience in the process of governing Albania and a sense of personal involvement in the leadership of society through a one-year Fellowship placement attached to a top-ranking government position.
Fellows also participate in an Education Program where they will meet with a series of individuals including the Prime Minister, Ministers, Constitutional Court Justices, Advisers and other senior central government officials, Members of Parliament, military leaders, journalists, historians, business executives, leaders from non-government organizations, and foreign heads of state or diplomats as opportunities arise. There will also be a series of seminars on European integration, public policy, decision making, foreign policy, security policy, leadership, soft skills, etc.

What is the mission of the program?

Its purpose is to provide gifted young Albanian professionals with first-hand experience in the process of governing Albania and a sense of personal involvement in the leadership of society.

What type of individual is the program seeking to find?

The LEAD Albania program management and the selection commission is looking for individuals who are most likely to fullfill the mission of the program. The following criteria are considered when selecting the Fellows:

  • A record of remarkable professional achievement early in one’s career.
  • Evidence of leadership skills and the potential for further growth.
  • A demonstrated commitment to public service.
  • The skills to succeed at the highest levels of the government, and the ability to work effectively as part of a team.

Other qualities include:

  • Exceptional writing ability
  • Foreign language skills
  • Positive attitude
  • Strong management skills
  • Very good interpersonal skills
  • Level of expertise in the proposed focus area.

These qualities combined with the strength of one’s character are taken into consideration when selecting a class for the Program.

Who is the Selection Commission of LEAD Albania Program composed of?

The Selection Commission on the LEAD Albania Program is composed of two AADF representatives and three outstanding citizens who represent a different range of backgrounds, interests, and professions. The Commission interviews selected candidates from the first round and then recommends those individuals it finds most qualified to host institutions for appointment as Fellows.

What is the program schedule and selection timeline?

Interested candidates can apply online at the application section of our website. All applications must be submitted with supporting documents by March 13.  Please see application section for more details.

April

First round selection
Applicants are notified in April if they have been selected for first round interviews. If selected, they will receive a notification explaining the time and location for interviews.

May

First round interviews
First round interviews will be conducted by an AADF panel. The candidates selected for the second round of interviews with the Selection Commission will be notified of the time and location by e-mail.

June

Interviews by the Selection Commission
Candidates will be interviewed by the Selection Commission in the second round of interviews. These interviews will determine which Fellows will be recommended to the host institutions.

July

Interviews with host institutions
The finalists recommended by the Selection Commission will interview with principals at the host institutions.  Host institutions will make the final decision.

September/October

Final design of individual placements.
Fellowship year begins with an October launching ceremony.

What is expected of a LEAD Albania Fellow during the program year?

Being a Fellow in the LEAD Albania Program is an honor, a privilege, and a full-time commitment. Fellows are expected to fully engage in their work placement, which lies at the heart of the Fellowship. Work placements can offer unparalleled experience working with Government officials on challenging issues. The work often requires long hours and, at times, unglamorous duties that require as much perseverance as ability on the Fellows’ part. The work placement may also require travel on behalf of the host institution. The Education component augments and enhances the work experience through seminars, workshops, round-tables, etc.

How do I apply?

The online applications go live each year on January 15, on the AADF website and must be submitted by March 13, at 5:00 PM (CET). It is recommended that submission of the application is a few days earlier than the deadline in case of technical difficulties.

What are the eligibility requirements?

  • Applicants must be Albanian citizens (dual citizenship is also acceptable).
  • Applicants must have completed their undergraduate education. Completion of graduate and postgraduate studies may be of significant advantage.
  • Preferably, applicants will have a minimum of 5 years of post-graduate work experience. In case of a completed PhD, the preferred minimum is 3 years.
  • Employees of the central government and the President Office are not eligible.
  • There are no age restrictions. However, the Fellowship Program was created to give selected applicants the experience of government service early in their careers.

Can I be a Fellow if I have dual citizenship?

Applicants must hold Albanian citizenship, dual citizenship is acceptable.

Are there age restrictions?

There are no age restrictions. However, the Fellowship program was created to give selected Albanians the experience of public service early in their careers.

Does a candidate need to be of the same political party as the current principals of the host institutions?

No, fellowships are awarded strictly on a non-partisan basis.

What is the best approach for handling recommendation letters?

Applicants are asked to submit only three references. It is best to have recommendations from individuals who know you well and can fully answer the questions that are asked in the application. For example, a recommendation letter from a prominent person is not helpful if that individual cannot speak about your background and character.

At least one recommendation should be from an individual that can speak to your professional competence and accomplishments in your field. At least one recommendation should come from someone with knowledge of your community and civic activities.

In addition, one recommendation should be from your current supervisor, if applicable. A recommendation from a prior supervisor is acceptable, but a current supervisor is preferred.

If selected, can I continue to participate in organizations in which I currently serve such as corporate and government boards, or on local councils?

LEAD Albania Fellows are considered full-time employees of the host institutions and are subject to the Albanian laws and regulations. These standards prohibit Fellows from receiving any salary or any contribution or supplementation of salary from any source other than the LEAD Albania program. If outside activity that is uncompensated conflicts with your official duties, then you will not be able to continue that outside activity.

Service on advisory boards and other types of committees is evaluated on a case-by-case basis to determine if Fellows may continue the outside activity based on the precise nature of the activity and the official duties performed while serving as an employee of the host institution in the program.

Are applicants required to submit financial disclosures if selected? What happens if there is a conflict of interest with my investments and my assignment?

Certain placements will require that a financial disclosure form be submitted.

Conflict of interest matters that arise will be handled on a case-by-case basis according to all applicable laws and regulations. If you have questions during the application process about potential conflicts of interest, please contact the LEAD Albania Program office to inquire.

Are applicants required to undergo a security and background investigation?

The winning Finalists recommended to the host institutions are required to submit comprehensive background information, and must be qualified to pass a security clearance. The winning Finalists must submit the following documents: penal certificate, the respective certificates from court and prosecution and the bailiff office certificate. The host institution may conduct further background investigation and certify your security clearance by the Albanian National Security Authority.

If it appears that a security clearance will not be possible, a winning Finalist will be notified by the Program Director and will not be able to become a Fellow.

Please be assured that all of this information is carefully protected and kept confidential. Panelists and Commissioners do not have access to background investigation information. Information provided by candidates who ultimately are not selected will be destroyed.

How is the class of Fellows selected?

The selection process is very competitive. The LEAD Albania Program staff screen the applications to identify the most promising candidates. Approximately 50 of the most qualified applicants are selected to be interviewed in the first round by a panel from the AADF. Based on the results of the interviews from the first round, Program Management selects approximately 30 candidates to proceed for the second round. The Selection Commission, which is comprised of representatives of AADF and prominent personalities from academia, public and private sector then interviews the group and recommends 10-15 outstanding candidates to host institutions for a one-year appointment as Fellows. These candidates interview with the respective principals of host institutions, who make the final decision.

How should I prepare for the interviews?

We recommend that candidates prepare as they would for any other interview. We also recommend the following:

• Knowledge of your application, as each application is carefully studied.
• Study current events. One of the essential qualities of a LEAD Albania Fellow is that they are citizens of the larger world.
• Be current on key issues in your professional field.
• Develop a clear articulation about why you should be selected.

What is required of first round selected candidates?

First round candidates are expected to participate in an interview that determines the selection of the candidates for the second round interviews with the Selection Commission. The interviews are scheduled in July and will take place in Tirana. Interviews are conducted by an interviewing panel created by the AADF. Travel arrangements are the responsibility of each selected candidate.

What is required of second round selected candidates?

The selected candidates from the first round are interviewed by the members of the Selection Commission on the LEAD Albania Program. Travel arrangements are the responsibility of each candidate.

How are interviews with the host institutions conducted and how is placement determined?

Two to three finalists are recommended to every host institution. The individuals who are recommended have to participate in a series of briefings and interviews with the principals of the host institutions to make the final selection and determine their fellowship work placements. Travel arrangements are the responsibility of each Finalist.

Can a Fellow remain in his/her placement after the Fellowship year?

The Fellowship year concludes in fall of the following year, and the program encourages Fellows to return to their communities and professions. The Fellow can be asked to continue at an agency, but not in their capacity as a Fellow.

What is the Education component?

The Education component augments and enhances the work placement experience. Fellows are expected to fully participate in the Education component, which includes seminars, workshops, trips, round-table discussions etc. Each class meets with dozens of individuals including the President of the Republic, Prime Minister, Ministers, members of justice institutions, senior government officials, Members of Parliament, military leaders, journalists, historians, business executives, leaders from non-governmental organizations, diplomats in Tirana and high representatives of other countries visiting Tirana.

Are Fellows provided with compensation and benefits like salary and health insurance during the program year?

The AADF shall provide Fellows with a full salary package, including health and social security, for the entire year. Their remuneration is equivalent in accordance with the pay scale of the government agency where assigned. The Program provides travel allowances for domestic and international travel, equipment for the workstations (if needed), and training allowances.

Does the Fellowship provide housing during the Fellowship year?

No. Fellows are responsible for their own housing arrangements.

Can Fellows receive outside income from other sources (private or public) during the program year?

LEAD Albania Fellows are considered full-time employees of the host institutions, they are part of the AADF payroll and are subject to the Albanian laws and regulations. These standards prohibit Fellows from receiving salaries or contribution from other sources.

Fellows cannot continue any outside activity that conflicts with official duties. Service on advisory boards and other types of committees are evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

How are previously scheduled commitments or vacation handled during the Fellowship year?

The program year is a full-time commitment, with work, education, travel, and fellowship responsibilities. Almost all activities are mandatory. Only under special circumstances, and with approval by the Program Director, are Fellows excused from activities.

If you currently have a multitude of personal commitments, vacations, or issues, we strongly encourage you to reconsider the timing of the application. Each Fellow and the full class benefit most from full participation and engagement.

Where can I direct additional questions?

The program staff is available to provide assistance and answer questions. The staff can be reached Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM via email at leadalbania@aadf.org

Apply

Welcome!

We are now accepting applications for the 2022 Class of LEAD Albania Program. The application deadline is on Monday, 15 March 2021, at 5:00 PM. This application is for the Program that will begin in fall 2021.

The application is submitted only online and is composed of the following sections:

  1. General personal information;
  2. Education background;
  3. Employment history;
  4. Voluntary and civic activities;
  5. Contact details of minimum three recommenders (reference/recommendation letters will be requested and collected by the program management);
  6. Declarations regarding security and justice clearance (i.e. whether the person has not been convicted of criminal offense or felonies, etc.);
  7. Essays;
  8. Explanation about the motivation to become a Fellow.

Learn more about the selection criteria in This Link (Only in Albanian).
For reference and planning purposes see this Sample Application. To start the application process, click here  (Only in Albanian)

The program staff is available to provide assistance and answer questions. The staff can be reached Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM via email at leadalbania@aadf.org.

News

  • 02.18.2021

    AADF and General Prosecutor Office signed an MoU for the Implementation of LEAD Albania Program

    AADF and General Prosecutor Office signed an MoU for the Implementation of LEAD Albania Program

    On February 18th General Prosecutor Mr. Olsian Çela and Co-Executive Directors of AADF Mr. Aleksandër Sarapuli and Mr. Martin Mata signed a Memorandum of Understanding between Albanian-American Development Foundation and General Prosecutor Office for the implementation of LEAD Albania Program. Experienced legal professionals aiming to develop further their leadership skills will be able to contribute and gain an experience as part of the staff of General Prosecutor Office beginning this November, in the framework of LEAD Albania Program.

    Detailed description 

  • 02.04.2021

    Albanian-American Development Foundation and the High Prosecutorial Council signed an MoU for the Implementation of LEAD Albania Program

    Albanian-American Development Foundation and the High Prosecutorial Council signed an MoU for the Implementation of LEAD Albania Program

    Another great meeting, a fruitful discussion and the official start of a new cooperation with the High Prosecutorial Council for the implementation of LEAD Albania Program.

    A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed today in the premises of “ Poli i Drejtësisë” from the Chairman of High Prosecutorial Council, Mr. Gent Ibrahimi and Co-Executive Directors of Albanian-American Development Foundation (AADF), Mr. Aleksandër Sarapuli and Mr. Martin Mata. This MoU formalizes the engagement of KLP and AADF for cooperating for the implementation of LEAD Albania Program.

    Exceptional Legal Professionals will be offered the opportunity of a great work experience in this new governing institution of the Justice System.

    Detailed Description

  • 02.02.2021

    Albanian-American Development Foundation and Special Prosecution Office against Corruption and Organized Crime (SPAK) signed an MoU for the Implementation of LEAD Albania Program

    Albanian-American Development Foundation and Special Prosecution Office against Corruption and Organized Crime (SPAK) signed an MoU for the Implementation of LEAD Albania Program

    After High Justice Inspector and High Judicial Council, Special Prosecution Office against Corruption and Organized Crime (SPAK) becomes the third governing institution of Justice System that signs a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with AADF for the implementation of LEAD Albania Program. The MoU was signed today on February 2nd 2021, in the premises of SPAK by Chairman of SPAK, Mr. Arben Kraja and AADF Co-Executive Directors Mr. Aleksandër Sarapuli and Mr. Martin Mata. SPAK will be a Host Institution for LEAD Albania Fellows beginning on November 2021.

    Detailed Description 

  • 01.21.2021

    LEAD Albania in the new Governing Institutions of the Justice System

    LEAD Albania in the new Governing Institutions of the Justice System

    A Memorandum of Understanding was signed on January 21, 2021 between the Office of the High Justice Inspector and Albanian-American Development Foundation (AADF) for LEAD Albania Program. High Justice Inspector becomes the first one from the new governing institutions of the justice system added to the Host Institutions for LEAD Albania Fellows.

    Memorandum of Understanding signed by the High Justice Inspector, Mr. Artur Metani and Co-executive directors of AADF, Mr. Aleksandër Sarapuli and Mr. Martin Mata, envision the engagement of the parties for a partnering and collaborative cooperation for the implementation of LEAD Albania Program.

    High Justice Inspector, Mr. Metani considered the investment in LEAD Albania Program, as crucial for the long-term sustainable development of the country, through professionals with sound knowledge on good governance and public administration, acquired from the direct experience in the highest levels of the governing institutions of the country.

    Co-executive director of AADF, Mr. Martin Mata highlighted that LEAD Albania Program is successfully implemented from 2013 and each year fellows of the Program are placed as advisors in the staffs of the highest institutions of Albania: in the Office of the President, in the office of Prime Minister, in the Ministries and in the Municipality of Tirana and starting this year, AADF will also partner with the new institutions established by the justice reform.

     

  • 01.15.2021

    Call for Applications

    Call for Applications

    Albanian-American Development Foundation (AADF) is now accepting applications for LEAD Albania Program 2022. LEAD Albania program is modeled after the White House Fellows Program in USA.

    For more information on LEAD Albania Program, eligibility criteria and how to apply visit: http://www.aadf.org/project/lead-albania/

    To start the application click here

    The application deadline is on Monday, March 15th, 2021, at 5:00 PM. This application is for the Program that will begin in fall 2021.The application is submitted only online. Applications submitted by email or delivered to the office will not be considered.

  • 10.20.2020

    Graduation Ceremony – LEAD Albania 2020

    Graduation Ceremony – LEAD Albania 2020

    On October 14th, 2020, in the premises of the Palace of Congresses, in the Albanology Hall, took place the Graduation Ceremony of the current Class of LEAD Albania 2020 and the welcoming of the new Class of LEAD Albania 2021. Minister of State for the Relation with the Parliament, Ms. Elisa Spiropali, on behalf of the Prime Minister’s Office, virtually Mr. Michael Granoff, Chairman of the Board of the Albanian-American Development Foundation (AADF), AADF Board Member virtually and present, Co-CEO-s of AADF Martin Mata and Aleksandër Sarapuli, Members of Selection Commission, chiefs of staff of the Host Institutions and LEAD Alumni welcomed the class of 2021. The 9 new fellows that will serve a one-year fellowship as advisers in the staffs of the highest government officials are: Albana Karapanço in the Ministry of Finance and Economy, Arnisa Tepelija in the Ministry of Justice, Dhurata Milori in the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Elirë Mançaj in the Ministry of Culture, Ira Papagjika in the Ministry of Health and Social Protection, Moltinë Prebibaj in the Ministry of  Agriculture and Rural Development, Rodon Miraj in the Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy, Rovena Elmazi in the Ministry of Education, Sport and Youth and Teuta Turani in the Ministry of Finance and Economy.

    Detailed description

  • 06.25.2020

    Lead Albania – Meeting with the Head of the Democratic Party

    Lead Albania – Meeting with the Head of the Democratic Party

    Roundtable discussions with high level leaders are a great opportunity provided to LEAD Albania Fellows during the Program timeline. Such opportunity was today’s meeting with the Head of the Democratic Party, Mr. Lulzim Basha who cordially shared with the Fellows his experience as a leader and the vision to serve and take Albania forward.

    Mr. Basha answered the fellows questions and discussed with them on the priorities and plans of the Democratic Party, on the electoral reform, public administration, youth employment and other issues.

    “I see LEAD Albania Program as a bridge for the employment of the best professionals in the public administration.” :said Mr. Basha to the Fellows.

    Detailed description 

  • 04.24.2020

    LEAD Albania – Online coaching sessions from Center for Creative Leadership

    LEAD Albania – Online coaching sessions from Center for Creative Leadership

    “An oasis in the midst of COVID-19 craziness where you could recharge and focus in self-development, just like in normal times!” This is how one of our LEAD Fellows, Zerina Bruci, expresses herself after the Coaching Sessions organized online last week through Microsoft Teams Platform, with the Coach & Trainer Rebecca Fanger from Center for Creative Leadership (CCL).

    Ranked among the World’s Top Providers of Leadership Training, Center for Creative Leadership is for years now one of the AADF partners, that provides LEAD Albania Fellows with the best leadership trainings.

    The tailor-made training package on leadership development provided by CCL is composed by “Module 1 of Training” that was organized in Tirana in March 9th-11th, “the Coaching Sessions” which for the first time this year were provided online because of the COVID-19 pandemic and “Module 2 of Training” that is planned to happen in June in Brussels in CCL Campus.

  • 12.26.2019

    LEAD Albania 2020: Training package on “Introduction to Public Administration and Role of Advisers”

    LEAD Albania 2020: Training package on “Introduction to Public Administration and Role of Advisers”

    LEAD Albania Fellowship experience is supported by an educational component that starts with a training package on “Introduction to Public Administration and Role of Advisers” organized by AADF in collaboration with Future Center. For the 7th Cohort, these training sessions started in October, during a team building activity in Dardhe, Korce, prior to Fellows starting work in the Host Institutions, and continued in Tirana as afterwork sessions until the end of December. The Fellows acquired knowledge on the legal basis, organization and functioning of Albanian public administration, communication and negotiation techniques, the role of advisors, classified information, Event management and Time Management, as well as the Diplomatic Protocol and Business Etiquette. The training was delivered through theoretical sessions and interactive and simulation exercises.

    Detailed description

     

  • 04.26.2019

    LEAD HUB

    LEAD HUB

    LEAD HUB, the newest initiative of AADF and LEAD Albania Program. In the frame of the ecological project Forestation of Tirana, the Chairman of the AADF Board, Mr. Michael Granoff, LEAD Alumni and LEAD Albania Fellows donated 29 seedlings to the Great Artificial Lake of Tirana, in order to increase greening and improve the environment of the capital. The trees donated by AADF and LEAD Albania will increase year by year with new program participants. Several trees were planted symbolically by Mr. Michael Granoff, Mr. Erion Veliaj, representatives of the Foundation as well as participants from the Program. LEAD HUB will be the place that will often gather LEAD Fellows and not just for activities, discussions but also to take care for this space.

    Detailed description

Alumni

Admir Malaj – Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth

Bledar Dervishaj – Ministry of Justice

Dritan Fino – Ministry of Finance

Eduart Gjokutaj – Ministry of Finance

Elona Bano –  President’s Office

Ergis Sefa – Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth

Krislen Keri – Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure

Ledio Braho – President’s Office

Qamil Dika – Municipality of Tirana

Sokol Muça – Ministry of Education and Sport

Adanela Musaraj – Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Water Management

Besjona Mehmetaj (Dede) – Ministry of Education and Sport

Edmond Ahmeti – Ministry of Culture

Endri Mykaj – Prime Minister’s Office

Erton Graceni – Prime Minister’s Office

Gilbert Vigani – Municipality of Tirana

Julinda Mansaku – Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure

Sokol Bardhi – Ministry of Interior

Ujvara Ponari – Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Bruxhilda Kito – Ministry of Interior

Dritan Palnikaj – Prime Minister’s Office

Ekflodia Leskaj – Ministry of Economic Development, Tourism, Trade and Entrepreneurship

Enton Duro – Ministry of Finance

Gerion Dhimo – State Minister for Innovation and Public Administration

Jonila Gabrani – Ministry of Health

Klodiana Beshku – Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Lumturi Hoxha – Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure

Marsida Duli – Ministry of Health

Alban Lila – Ministry of Economic Development, Tourism, Trade and Entrepreneurship

Soana Jaupllari – Ministry of Economic Development, Tourism, Trade and Entrepreneurship

Albana Hana – Ministry of Justice

Elfrida Bino – Ministry of Energy and Industry

Sabina Juka – Ministry of European Integration

Sonila Turshilla – Ministry of European Integration

Sashenka Lleshaj – Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Emiljano Kaziaj – Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth

Enkelejda Hamzaj – Municipality of Tirana

Besarta Vladi – State Minister of Innovation and Public Administration

Esmeralda Byberi – Municipality of Tirana

Nita Shala- Ministry of Internal Affairs

Jonida Burba – Ministry of Internal Affairs

Bledar Qalliu – Ministry for Europe and of Foreign Affairs

Doriana Matraku – Ministry of Education and Sport

Elena Pici – Prime Minister’s Office

Elkjana Gjipali – Ministry of Culture

Sidrit Tako – Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure

Ardit Cami – Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure

Orjola Shahaj – Ministry of Health and Social Protection

Besnik Maho – Ministry of Justice
Eltion Meka – Ministry for Europe and of Foreign Affairs
Enyal Lani – Ministry of Health and Social Protection
Ermal Telha – Ministry of Tourism and Environment
Eugena Topi – Ministry of Finance and Economy
Irola Andoni – Municipality of Tirana
Manjola Stefani – Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development
Oerd Bej – Ministry of Education, Sport and Youth
Oltion Pengu – Prime Minister’s Office
Valbona Seranaj – Municipality of Tirana

Amarildo Çeka – Ministry of Health and Social Protection
Anisa Duraj – Ministry of Culture
Anjeza Xhaferaj – Prime Minister’s Office
Bora Ylli – Ministry of Culture
Desara Dushi – Ministry of Justice
Elona Hasko – Ministry of Education, Sport and Youth
Fabjola Arapi – Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development
Haris Vongli – The Presidential Office
Irena Myzeqari – Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs
Jonid Jorgji – Municipality of Tirana
Rei Naçe – Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy
Zerina Bruci –  Prime Minister’s Office

Calendar

April

First round selection
Applicants are notified in April if they have been selected for first round interviews. If selected, they will receive a notification explaining the time and location for interviews.

May

First round interviews
First round interviews will be conducted by an AADF panel. The candidates selected for the second round of interviews with the Selection Commission will be notified of the time and location by e-mail.

June

Interviews by the Selection Commission
Candidates will be interviewed by the Selection Commission in the second round of interviews. These interviews will determine which Fellows will be recommended to the host institutions.

July

Interviews with host institutions
The finalists recommended by the Selection Commission will interview with principals at the host institutions.  Host institutions will make the final decision.

September/October

Final design of individual placements.
Fellowship year begins with an October launching ceremony.