GFOA Scholarship Spotlight: Connie Ho

Connie received the Minorities in Government Finance Scholarship in 2021.

Photo of Connie Ho
  • Connie Ho has served as senior public affairs specialist at the Irvine Ranch Water District, California, since April 2017. Connie is also a 2020 Popular Annual Financial Reporting Fellow. Connie holds a dual BA degree in English and International Studies through the University of California at Irvine, and is currently pursuing an MPA from California State University at Long Beach and plans to graduate in June 2022. Connie’s future goals include managing projects that build on community engagement, governmental operations, and financial planning. Connie also hopes to bolster diversity and inclusion initiatives in the public sector.

Q & A with Connie

Why did you choose this?

I am looking forward to taking classes related to public administration and government finance. These courses will focus on strategy, innovation, and leadership, providing students an opportunity to discuss how new ideas can be generated, evaluated, and implemented. The program is guided on serving the public good, advancing democracy, promoting social justice, and promoting diverse communities.

What government are you working or hoping to work at in the future?

I have worked with the finance team at a special district to ensure that the website’s finance center webpage has the most up-to-date information regarding audits, statements, and financial reports. As a graduate student, I assisted a local city government with the development of their Popular Annual Financial Report and learned how to research demographic information and numbers related to the local area to provide readers more context on the essential work done during the COVID-19 pandemic. In these roles, I have been able to put to practice the Government Finance Officers Association’s (GFOA) Code of Professional Ethics to strengthen trust with the public, modeling the values of integrity, honesty and openness while displaying an appreciation of new information or ideas that continue the safety and vitality of the organization. 

What are your future career goals?

Regarding my career, a short-term goal is to receive a master’s degree to enhance my public administration and business administration skills. Long-term goals would be to work in a project management role, focusing on community partnerships to make the most impact with staff and the community, and to work on rebuilding trust in local government. 

Which GFOA scholarship did you receive this year, and how will GFOA's scholarship help you achieve those goals?

I received the Minorities in Government Finance Scholarship, which recognizes and encourages outstanding minority students - I appreciate the support of GFOA and am so honored to be recognized in this year's scholarship recipient cohort. Looking to the future, I plan to use my graduate coursework along with my work experience to help improve on the processes and procedures in government communication so as to continue to cultivate and maintain the public’s trust with the government. Clear communication is a continual process, with evolving possibilities, and I am excited for what the future holds.