SoPA grad has aptitude for advocacy
Khamani “Gigi” Williamson started her Master of Public Administration (MPA) in the Tulane School of Professional Advancement’s John Lewis Public Administration Program in 2021 with a goal to invoke growth in her community. Williamson is part of the graduating class of 2023 and has a track record of leadership and advocacy as evidenced by her receipt of the exclusive Tulane 34 award.
In her first semester, Williamson advocated for the development of a law course within her program after discovering a mutual interest of legal studies among her peers. As a result, the Law and Public Administration course was born and remains one of the highest enrolled elective courses within the program.
Williamson decided to pursue an MPA after witnessing the displacement of minorities when several low-income housing facilities were demolished in her hometown of Norfolk, Virginia.
“I always want to speak up for what’s equitable and inclusive,” said Williamson. “I found that I needed to learn the right strategies to tactfully advocate, so change can actually happen.”
Williamson was a founding member of Tulane’s International City/County Management Association (ICMA) chapter, serving in leadership roles for the last two years. She was also a SoPA student advisory board member and worked to increase in-person events for local SoPA students.
“Student advocacy is important because it engages peers, faculty, staff, administrators to work together to create impactful change—not only for yourself, but for everyone within the community,” she said.
Williamson’s impact on campus will continue to be felt after her departure. Her legacy serves as an inspiration to current and future students, reminding them of the power of leadership and community involvement.
Following graduation, Williamson will begin her doctoral studies in Policy Studies with a focus in regional community development policy & entrepreneurship at Clemson University.