Meta-Leader of the Year Award

Each year, NPLI selects a program alumnus as the Meta-Leader of the Year. Honorees display extraordinary leadership in the midst of nationally or internationally significant crisis or disruptive change. Their leadership impact could apply to a response, policy development, or organizational transformation. A role model for our students, the annual recipient addresses our residential program.


Faculty members confer the award to the Meta-Leader who:

  • Demonstrates remarkable character, including curiosity, courage, and confidence.
  • Discovers and communicates situational insight that orients and engages followers.
  • Builds connectivity of effort across the wide expanse of required people, leaders, and organizations.
  • Inspires innovative action and productivity, aligned to the scenarios they face.
  • Follows their moral compass, guiding by and guiding ethical decisions and actions.

2023 Recipient

Marcus T. Coleman, Jr.


DHS Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships
Federal Emergency Management Agency



2022 Recipient

Admiral Linda L. Fagan


U.S. Coast Guard

2021 Recipient

Carol Cunningham M.D.
State Medical Director
Ohio Department of Public Safety

2020 Recipient

Alyssa Carrier
Founder and Chief Executive Officer
AC Disaster Consulting

2019 Recipient

Jim Andrews
Vice President
Health, Safety, Security, and Environment, Schlumberger Limited

2018 Recipient

Kerry Gilpin
Massachusetts State Police

2017 Recipient

Jono Anzalone
Vice President
International Services at American Red Cross

2016 Recipient

Jane Cage
Joplin Citizens Advisory Recovery Team

2015 Recipient

Alice Hill
Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Resilience Policy
National Security Council, The White House

2014 Recipient

Martin Cetron M.D.
Division of Global Migration and Quarantine, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

2013 Recipient

William “Billy” Evans
Boston Police Department

2011 Recipient

Richard Serino
Deputy Administrator
Federal Emergency Management Agency

2010 Recipient

Rear Admiral Peter V. Neffenger
Deputy National Incident Commander
Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill, U.S. Coast Guard

2009 Recipient

Richard Besser, M.D.
Acting Director
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention