Healthy Kids Initiative

This is the second in a series of profiles of innovative leaders in government based on interviews by the authors Paul R. Lawrence and Mark A. Abramson for the book “Paths to Making a Difference: Leading in Government.” The book highlights the management lessons of 24 political executives during their first two years in the Obama administration.

Historically, a major criticism of government has been that it consists of individual government agencies (often called stove-pipes or silos) which tend not to work very well with other agencies, even those within their own department.

When she arrived at the Department of Agriculture (USDA), Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan found some truth in this criticism of government. Many agencies within USDA viewed themselves as somewhat independent of the Office of the Secretary. Keep reading →