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Mark Abramson
About Mark Abramson


Mark A. Abramson is President of Leadership Inc., a company specializing in assisting leading corporations and non-profits in the development of thought leadership, including publications and events.

Career Overview

Mr. Abramson has had a unique career. He was instrumental in creating two cutting-edge organizations dedicated to improving management in government. In 1998, he helped create the IBM Center for the Business of Government. He served as Executive Director of the IBM Center for the Business of Government from 1998 to 2007. During his tenure, the IBM Center published more than 200 reports and books examining a variety of topics related to the management of government and public service. As Executive Director, he oversaw all Center publications, Center events for government executives, The Business of Government magazine, the Business of Government radio hour, and the Center's website. At the Center, he planned and administered over 50 events for government executives. He is currently a consultant to the IBM Center.

Earlier in his career, Mr. Abramson was one of the founders of the Council for Excellence in Government. He served as first President of the Council, serving from 1983 to 1994. While at the Council, he was instrumental in creating the Principals program, the Prune Book series, and the Excellence in Government Fellows program.

From 1977 to 1983, Mr. Abramson served as a senior program evaluator in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. From 1979 to 1983, he led a four-year evaluation study of the impact of the Civil Service Reform Act of 1978 on the department. From 1975 to 1977, he was a research associate at the National Academy of Sciences/National Research Council. While at NAS/NRC, he wrote The Funding of Social Research and Development.

Mr. Abramson's career includes teaching in the Department of Public Administration and International Affairs at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia. He is currently a Fellow of the Center for Federal Management Leadership at George Mason University. He also served as an adjunct faculty member at the Federal Executive Institute in Charlottesville, Virginia.


Throughout his career, Mr. Abramson has published numerous books and articles. His most recent book is Government for the Future: Reflection and Vision for Tomorrow's Leaders (with Daniel J. Chenok and John M. Kamensky). He is co-author (with Paul R. Lawrence) of What Government Does: How Political Executives Management, Paths to Making a Difference: Leading in Government, and Succeeding as a Political Executive: 50 Insights from Experience. He is also the co-author (with Daniel J. Chenok and John M. Kamensky of Getting It Done: A Guide for Government Executives (2017 Edition). He is co-editor The Operators Manual for the New Administration, and Learning the Ropes: Insights for Political Appointees.

Mr. Abramson is the author or editor of 19 books and has published more than 100 articles on public management. From 2005 to 2008, he served as on the editorial board of the Public Administration Review as Case Study Editor. He has also served as a Contributing Editor to Government Executive and as a member of the Board of Editors and Forum Editor for The Public Manager.


Mr. Abramson was recognized by the Center for Leadership and Management at the Graduate School, USDA for "Outstanding Leadership and a Life Long Commitment to Public Service and Collaboration." He was recognized for distinguished public service by Phi Alpha Sigma, the honorary public administration society. Mr. Abramson is also a recipient of ASPA's NCAC Distinguished Service award. Mr. Abramson was awarded the Laverne Burchfield Award for his article "The Leadership Factor," which was selected as the Best Book Review published in Public Administration Review. He received the Elmer B. Staats Award for Accountability in Government by the National Capital Area Chapter of the American Society for Public Administration.


M.A., Political Science, Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University, 1973

M.A., History, New York University, 1971

B.A., Florida State University, 1968 (Major: Political Science; Minor: History)

Professional Experience

Leadership Inc., Chairman, 1994 to present

The IBM Center for the Business of Government, Executive Director, 1998 to 2007

George Mason University, Faculty Member, Department of Public and International Affairs, 1994 to 1999, 2011

Government Executive, Contributing Editor, 1994 to 1998

The Council for Excellence In Government, President, 1983 to 1994

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Senior Program Evaluator, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, 1977 to 1983

National Academy of Sciences/National Research Council, Research Associate, Study Project on Social Research and Development, 1975 to 1977

Columbia University, Research Associate, 1974

Commission to Investigate the Black Panthers and the Police, Research Assistant, 1969 to 1971

VISTA (now AmeriCorps), Volunteer, Chicago, Illinois, 1968 to 1969

409 Princess Street | Alexandria, VA 22314 | (703) 347-4425 | mark.abramson@comcast.net