Jennifer Nealin Parker
Director, Office of Transition Initiatives, Bureau for Democracy, Conflict and Humanitarian Assistance, U.S. Agency for International Development
MPA, Class of 2008
Nealin Parker is currently the acting director of the Office of Transition Initiatives at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID/OTI). Established to provide rapid response in world crises, USAID/OTI provides foreign assistance in high policy priority countries around the world. Prior to her current position, she spent seven years working on development, conflict prevention and post-conflict transitions in Africa, Latin America and South East Asia. She has worked with governments and non-governmental entities on post-conflict issues, including with Interpeace, The Mamdouha S. Bobst Center on Peace and Justice at Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Aceh’s Peace and Reintegration Center, the International Foundation for Electoral Systems, and The Carter Center.
Prior to joining the administration, she served as chief of staff for the Center on International Cooperation, a New York-based think tank that focuses on policy research for the U.N. and other multilateral organizations. There, her portfolio included programs in peacekeeping, statebuilding, rule of law and democracy.
Parker's travel writing and photographs have appeared in the Lexington New Gazette and been exhibited at the Bernstein Gallery at the Wilson School. She authored a book on her experience as an elections consultant in Liberia, "Take a Right at the Tank and Other Ways to Get Home," and is co-author of a 2008 report on reforming provincial reconstruction teams in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Parker has an MPA from the Wilson School, where she conducted a year-long study of post-conflict tribunals in Muslim cultures as a religion and diplomacy fellow at the School's Liechtenstein Institute for Self Determination, and a bachelor of arts from the University of Virginia. In 2012, she was nominated as one of the 99 leaders in foreign policy under 33 years old. She is a Truman Fellow in National Security and a member of the International Society of Women Geographers.