ACMA has developed the following awards and scholarships to ensure that members are recognized for outstanding service and have the opportunity to challenge themselves by participating in an international professional development program. The ACMA Board and membership is also very active in recruiting students in the field of local government management. This commitment is reflected in some of the scholarships ACMA offers.

  • Jane L. Morris Women Leading Government Scholarship

    The Jane L. Morris Women Leading Government Scholarship recognizes women in local government in honor of Jane L. Morris, former Executive Director/CEO of Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport. Jane L. Morris was an accomplished and influential public servant. Raised in Glencoe, IL, Jane attended the University of Iowa and received her master’s degree in public administration from Arizona State University. Jane was a retired public servant with a long career spanning more than three decades that started in Skokie, IL, encompassed a variety of positions during her 25+ year with the City of Phoenix and concluded as the Executive Director/CEO of Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport. At the request of Jane’s family, donations were received from individuals and organizations around the nation who knew Jane to promote the Women Leading Government Chapter in Arizona. The donations received on Jane’s behalf will allow for other women in the profession to further their career in local government.

    This scholarship includes registration to the ACMA 2024 Winter Conference, a two-night stay at the resort, a $100 stipend for incidentals (i.e. gas, meals, etc.) and a one-year complimentary ACMA membership.EVALUATION CRITERIA1. Minimum of three years of public sector experience2. Female ACMA or Non-ACMA Member3. Potential for future public service (not about to retire or shift to private sector)4. Financial need5. Size of organization6. Scope of job responsibilities7. Educational background8. Two letters of recommendation from a supervisor or manager9. Strength of application (cover letter, supporting materials)

    APPLICATIONApplicants must submit the following documents for consideration ACMA: • Completed application form• Letter of interest (Please include the evaluation criteria areas here.)• Two letters of recommendation

    CONFERENCE DATE ACMA 2024 Winter Conference January 24-26 Hilton Sedona Resort at Bell Rock Sedona, Arizona

    Please click here to submit your application and upload your letter of interest and resume:
    The Jane Morris AZ WLG Scholarship Application

    *The 2024 application is now open. Please apply by January 5, 2024, to be considered.

  • Marvin A. Andrews Scholarship/Internship

    The Andrews Scholarship was initiated in 1990 in honor of the dedicated years of service by Marvin Andrews, former City Manager of Phoenix, to local government in Arizona. The Andrews Scholarship is sponsored by ACMA and is designed to honor and financially assist Arizona students in public administration, public policy or undergrad students working toward their Masters of Public Administration degree who aspire to a career in local government management. A scholarship is awarded to a full-time student attending either Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University, University of Arizona or Grand Canyon University who has exhibited strong academic achievement.

    In addition to the monetary award, the Andrews Scholarship recipient will be given the opportunity for a paid internship stipend of $6,000 with a participating Arizona city, town, or county. The purpose of the internship is to provide the scholarship recipient with professional experience and training in an Arizona city or town with a population of less than 50,000 or a county with a population of less than 200,000. This paid summer internship is provided through ACMA Scholarship funds and matching funds from the city, town, or county providing the internship. Details for host applicants can be found here. The Andrews Scholarship recipient will also be awarded a complimentary year of ACMA Student Membership.

    Scholarship Criteria

    Who may apply?

    Masters of Public Administration and Masters of Public Policy Students as well as undergraduates in political science, planning, sustainability programs and the universities’ honors colleges at Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University, the University of Arizona, and Grand Canyon University are eligible to apply for the ACMA scholarships. Master students must be enrolled in a graduate program or have completed their first semester. Undergraduate students must have completed at least 72 hours by December. Those completing the fall semester in time to graduate are also eligible.

    Students not selected as the recipient will have the opportunity to interview with hosts that are not selected by the scholarship recipient. If this opportunity is available, students that applied and interviewed for the internship will be notified in March.

    How are the scholarships to be used?

    The scholarships are intended to assist promising undergraduate/graduate students or recent graduates with funding to continue their studies or job search.

    What qualities does an ACMA Scholarship recipient possess?

    ACMA scholarship recipients demonstrate a strong commitment to pursuing a career in public administration at the local level in Arizona, a willingness to accept the challenges of a vigorous academic program, and a desire to succeed in their professional and/or personal endeavors.


    The selected Andrews Scholarship recipient will have the opportunity to interview prospective cities, towns and counties that have submitted an application to host the Andrews intern. The recipient must be able to accept a paid summer internship in 2024. Depending on the location, the recipient must be able to travel.

    Application Details and Deadline: 

    Applications for the scholarship is now open!

    To receive application information, please email

     The deadline to apply is Friday, November 10.

  • Charles A. Esser Memorial Scholarship

    The Esser Scholarship program was initiated in 1973 in honor and memory of Charles A. Esser, former City Manager of Phoenix. Sponsored by the Arizona City/County Management Association (ACMA), the scholarship is designed to honor and financially assist Arizona graduate students in public administration who aspire to a career in local government management.

    The scholarship is awarded annually to an MPA student attending Arizona State University, Grand Canyon University, Northern Arizona University, or the University of Arizona who is currently working or aspiring to work in local government and who has exhibited strong academic achievement.

    Who may apply?

    * Attending Arizona State University, Grand Canyon University, Northern Arizona University, or the University of Arizona* Minimum GPA of 3.0 in previous college coursework* Financial need as indicated in the essay* MPA student currently working in or aspiring to work in local government.* Strong academic achievement.

    Application Details and Deadline:

    Applications for the Esser Scholarship is now open!

    To receive more information and to apply, please contact

    The deadline to apply is Friday, November 10, 2023.

  • The Harvard Senior Executive Scholarship

    ACMA will again offer two full scholarships to the Senior Executives in State and Local Government Program at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. Only Full and Associate ACMA Members are eligible to apply. This intensive, interactive program is designed to help participants learn innovative ways of managing the real-world challenges and crises of government. Participants will develop new conceptual frameworks to address policy issues, explore the interrelationship between citizens and government, examine the ethical and professional responsibilities of leadership, and exchange ideas with faculty and participants from diverse backgrounds.

    There are two program sessions available (June 3 – June 21, 2024, and July 8 – July 26, 2024), and selected recipients can choose either program dates. All scholarships offered to ACMA Full and Associate ACMA Members will cover the full costs of the program (fees, tuition, housing, curricular materials, and most meals).

    In order to be considered for the two scholarships offered to ACMA Members, please return your completed application to ACMA

    Applications must be received by ACMA on or before Monday, March 11, 2024 ** Please disregard the April deadline on the Harvard website if you are applying for the ACMA scholarship. DO NOT send your application directly to Harvard, or it will not be considered for scholarship funds. Applications will be reviewed by the ACMA Selection Committee and selec ted applications will be forwarded to Harvard University. Applicants will be notified in late April if their applications have been forwarded to Harvard as ACMA scholarship candidates.

    To access applications and recommendation forms directly, please click on the following links:

    Click here for a program overview

    Click here to view a brochure about the Harvard Scholarship 

    Click here to download a program application form

    Click here to download a program recommendation formQuestions? Contact ACMA at

    ICMA MEMBERS: ICMA also offers two scholarships to the Harvard program. If you are interested in applying for the ICMA Harvard Scholarship, you can find their application materials here:
    Deadline to apply is January 31, 2024

    ACMA Harvard Program Graduates:

    Benjamin Bitter, Deputy County Manager/ Chief Product Officer, City of Maricopa
    Jenna Goad, Assistant to the City Manager, City of Goodyear

    Ryan Judy, Deputy County Manager, Town of Prescott Valley
    Leah Rhineheimer, Assistant Town Manager, Town of Gilbert

    Marie Peoples, Deputy County Manager, Coconino County
    Brent Stoddard, Deputy City Manager, City of Glendale

    Matt Busby, Assistant City Manager, City of Apache Junction
    Natalie Lewis, Deputy City Manager, City of Mesa

    Gina Montes, Assistant City Manager, City of Avondale
    Bryan Layton, Assistant County Manager, Navajo County

    Justin Clifton, City Manager, City of Sedona
    Jeff Tyne, Deputy City Manager, City of Peoria

    Wynette Reed, Deputy City Manager, City of Goodyear
    Mike Townsend, Deputy County Manager, Coconino County

    John Kross, Town Manager, Town of Queen Creek
    Robert Pickels, County Administrator, Yuma County

    Charlie Cassens, City Manager, City of Lake Havasu City
    Karolyn Kent, Deputy City Manager, City of Mesa

    Andrew Bertelsen, Assistant County Manager, Coconino County
    Dana Hlavac, Former Deputy County Manager, Mohave County
    Susan Thorpe, Former Deputy City Manager, City of Peoria

    Julie Ayers, County Administrator, Yavapai County
    Jim Thompson, City Manager, City of Casa Grande
    Jerene Watson, Deputy City Manager, City of Flagstaff

    Shane Dille, City Manager, City of Nogales
    Mary Jacobs, Assistant City Manager, City of Sierra Vista

    Gilbert Davidson, Town Manager, Town of Marana
    Kelly Udall, Town Manager, Town of Sahuarita

  • ICMA Conference Scholarship – Apply By June 27

    ACMA and ICMA have partnered to offer one scholarship to the 110th Annual ICMA Conference on September 21-25, 2024 in Pittsburgh/Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.

    The scholarship recipient will receive a complimentary conference registration from ICMA, and ACMA will reimburse the recipient’s travel expenses up to $1,000.

    To qualify for the scholarship, you must be a member of ACMA and be a first-time attendee of the ICMA Conference. All ACMA members are encouraged to apply for the scholarship. If you are not a member of ICMA, this is a unique opportunity to attend the conference and join ICMA at a substantially discounted rate. The scholarship recipient will be eligible to receive a 50% discount on his or her first year of ICMA membership dues and ACMA will provide up to $200 to cover the cost of these dues.

    To apply for the scholarship please send a letter indicating why you are interested in attending the conference and what you hope to learn and/or accomplish as a result of attending the conference. In addition, please describe your financial need and provide information about your involvement in ACMA activities. The letter and resume should be sent to the ACMA Board of Directors at

    The application deadline is Thursday, June 27, 2024.

    Please click here to view the ICMA Annual Conference website.


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