Skip to main content

Justice, Fairness, Inclusion, and Performance.

Adm. Thad Allen and Gov. David Beasley to Receive The National Academy of Public Administration’s “Elliot L. Richardson Prize for Excellence in Public Service”

Post Date: January 17, 2024

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Academy of Public Administration today announced Adm. Thad Allen, former Commandant, U.S. Coast Guard, and Gov. David Beasley, former Director of the World Food Programme, will receive the Elliot L. Richardson Prize for Excellence in Public Service on January 24, 2024.

“Governor David Beasley and Admiral Thad Allen are accomplished public servants and leaders, whose careers reflect Elliot Richardson’s spirit of service,” said Terry Gerton, President and CEO of the National Academy for Public Administration. “Their leadership in the face of incredible challenges is a blueprint for others to follow. We’re proud to honor them in person this year.”

The award ceremony will take place at the Ronald Reagan International Trade Center at 1300 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, D.C, from 7:00-9:00 p.m. on January 24, after a reception beginning at 6:00 p.m. J.J. Greene, National Security Correspondent and host with WTOP, will moderate a discussion with the two award recipients as part of the event.

The Elliot L. Richardson Prize is presented on a biennial basis to individuals exemplifying the public service virtues demonstrated by the award’s namesake. An Academy Fellow, Mr. Richardson served in four Cabinet-level positions in the U.S. government: Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare (HEW), Secretary of Defense, Attorney General, and Secretary of Commerce.

Thad Allen served as Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard from 2006-2010 and is known for his leadership in times of crisis. He served as the Principal Federal Official for response and recovery operations after hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005 while also serving as the Coast Guard Chief of Staff. He was also responsible for leading Coast Guard forces as Commander of the Atlantic Area and U.S. Maritime Defense Zone Atlantic, in the months after the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks.

David Beasley, a former Governor of South Carolina, recently served as the Executive Director of the World Food Programme (WFP). He was nominated by two Presidents of two different parties and appointed to the role in 2017 by the UN Secretary-General of the United Nations, serving until April 2023. During his time as director, WFP was the largest humanitarian organization in the world, assisting more than 160 million people in 2022 and raising $55 billion in aid funds. In 2020, Mr. Beasley accepted the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of WFP for its efforts to provide food assistance in conflict areas and to prevent food from being used as a weapon of war and conflict.

Previous recipients of the Elliot L. Richardson Prize include: Colin Powell, Alice Rivlin, George Shultz, Norman Mineta, Sandra Day O’Connor, Lee Hamilton, Tom Kean, James Baker, George J. Mitchell, Robert Gates, Paul Volcker, Sheila Bair, John Koskinen, William Ruckelshaus, Sylvia Mathews Burwell, Leon Panetta, Jerry Brown, Dr. Francis Collins, and Dr. Anthony Fauci.

Registration details can be found online here:

MEDIA: Media planning to attend should contact Matt Hampton:

About the National Academy of Public Administration

Chartered by Congress to provide non-partisan expert advice, the Academy is an independent, nonprofit, and nonpartisan organization established in 1967 to assist government leaders in building more effective, efficient, accountable, and transparent organizations. Learn more at