Interior Applauds U.S. Virgin Islands Graduates of Executive Leadership Program

Interior Applauds U.S. Virgin Islands Graduates of Executive Leadership Program Interior Applauds U.S. Virgin Islands Graduates of Executive Leadership Program

Last edited 10/01/2021
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(202) 355-3023


WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of the Interior’s Office of Insular Affairs applauds and congratulates seven new graduates from the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI) who successfully completed the Executive Leadership Program (ELP). A virtual commencement honoring these current and future leaders in public service was held on Friday June 11, 2021.

“Congratulations on your completion of the Executive Leadership Program! You have now acquired new perspectives and the potential to help strengthen your government’s institutions,” said Acting Assistant Secretary Nikolao Pula. “We look forward to working with each of you in advancing the success of the USVI’s public sector to better serve the people of the Virgin Islands.” 

Seven USVI participants joined 60 aspiring leaders from throughout the U.S. federal government to comprise the graduating cohort of 2020-2021. Meetings occurred virtually over the course of the past year engaging students in classroom instruction, individual and team assignments, executive interviews, as well as shadowing and developmental assignments to strengthen leadership skills. 

Since 2009, Interior’s Office of Insular Affairs has supported the participation of Virgin Islands middle-management leaders for a total of 26 who have completed the program. The USVI ELP was established to addresses challenges in attracting and retaining qualified individuals to work in core leadership functions. Participation is funded through the Office of Insular Affairs’ Technical Assistance Program and administered by the Graduate School USA’s Center for Leadership and Management.



The 2020-2021 USVI Executive Leadership cohort members are:

  • Erika Benjamin Callwood - USVI Territorial Emergency Management Agency
  • Tamar Corry - USVI Department of Finance
  • Esther Felix Donelly - USVI Department of Property and Procurement. 
  • Deviqua Parris - USVI Department of Property & Procurement
  • Kizma L. Petersen - USVI Department of Property and Procurement
  • Joy Wheatley - USVI Public Finance Authority
  • Wendy Wheeler - USVI Economic Development Authority

Additional information on the Executive Leadership Program and the Pacific & Virgin Islands Training Initiatives can be found online at

The Assistant Secretary, Insular and International Affairs, @InsularAffairs, and the Office of Insular Affairs (OIA) carry out the Secretary of the Interior’s responsibilities for the U.S. territories of American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Additionally, OIA administers and oversees federal assistance under the Compacts of Free Association to the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Palau. Follow and “like” OIA on Facebook and subscribe to the OIA YouTube Channel.



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