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By Eboni Ellis
Howard University News Service      
Howard School of Law Alumna Appointed White House Fellow
Shirlethia V. Franklin

WASHINGTON (August 20, 2013) – Shirlethia V. Franklin, a senior associate at an Atlanta law firm and Howard University School of Law alumna, is among the 12 outstanding individuals appointed to serve as White House Fellows during the 2013-2014 academic year.

Franklin (J.D. ‘07) graduated in the top 10 percent of her law school class, served as editor-in-chief of the Howard Law Journal, and was president of her first-year class. Franklin is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and is a recent cancer survivor.

“The entire journey has been incredibly long and intense, yet absolutely amazing and transformative,” Franklin said. “After a challenging application process and extensive preparation for both the regional and national interviews, I am elated to begin another chapter in my ever unfolding life story.”

Founded in 1964, the White House Fellows program is one of America's most prestigious programs for leadership and public service. White House Fellowships offer exceptional young men and women first-hand experience working at the highest levels of the federal government. Selected individuals typically spend a year working as a full-time, paid fellow to senior White House staff, cabinet secretaries and other top-ranking government officials.

Fellows also participate in an education program, consisting of roundtable discussions with renowned leaders from the private and public sectors, and trips to study U.S. policy in action, both domestically and internationally. Fellowships are awarded on a strictly non-partisan basis.

Franklin, 31, is a senior associate with the law firm Alston & Bird LLP. She is responsible for managing and defending complex litigation matters and counseling clients in the areas of product liability, toxic tort, mass tort and medical malpractice law. 

The White House Fellows process began for Franklin in November 2012 when she applied for the  program, which typically attracts more than 1,000 applicants for the 11 to 19 positions available. Applicants are asked to list their life’s accomplishments, state why they believe they qualify for the position, and write an essay to the president on a policy issue of their choice.

Approximately 150 finalists were then selected and interviewed by a panel of distinguished citizens. Franklin will relocate to Washington, DC, this month to begin the one-year fellowship.

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