Kathryn Dunn Tenpas

Fast Facts

  • Director of the Katzmann Initiative and visiting fellow with Governance Studies, the Brookings Institution
  • Advisory board member, White House Transition Project
  • Fellow, Center for Presidential Transition at the Partnership for Public Service

Areas Of Expertise

  • The First Year
  • Governance
  • Elections
  • Leadership
  • Politics
  • The Presidency

Kathryn Dunn Tenpas is director of the Katzmann Initiative and a visiting fellow with Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution, advisory board member of the White House Transition Project, and a fellow with the Center for Presidential Transition at the Partnership for Public Service.

Tenpas is a scholar of the American presidency focusing on White House staffing, presidential transitions, and the intersection of politics and policy within the presidency (e.g., presidential reelection campaigns, trends in presidential travel, and polling). She has authored the book Presidents as Candidates: Inside the White House for the Presidential Campaign and published more than 60 articles, book chapters, and papers on these topics.

Tenpas earned her BA degree from Georgetown University and her MA and PhD degrees from the University of Virginia.

Kathryn Dunn Tenpas News Feed

Kathryn Dunn Tenpas, a visiting fellow in governance studies at the Brookings Institution, has written detailed analyses on overall staff turnover in the Trump administration and the Biden administration.
Kathryn Dunn Tenpas Daily Kos
2023 was another challenging year for the president — tepid approval ratings, narrow margins in Congress, calls for impeachment, new and continuing military conflict abroad, and an economy struggling to regain its footing. Despite these challenges, relative stability in White House staffing continued to be a Biden administration hallmark, particularly when compared to the tumult in the Trump administration.
Kathryn Dunn Tenpas Brookings
Charles O. Jones rose to prominence in political science as an expert on the U.S. Congress – the subject he first taught me at the University of Virginia. But over time he expanded the scope of his influence and became perhaps the nation’s preeminent student of Washington’s political institutions.
Russell Riley, Kathryn Dunn Tenpas Good Authority
When it comes to drama within the White House, Biden’s administration has actually been exceptionally boring – and that’s no mistake.
Kathryn Dunn Tenpas NECN
The president has enjoyed historically low turnover among his department heads. But historians debate whether that's always a good thing.
Kathryn Dunn Tenpas, Russell Riley National Journal
Only one member of Biden’s cabinet has stepped down since the start of the administration: Labor Secretary Marty Walsh. That is the least turnover of any presidency going back to at least Ronald Reagan, according to data collected by Kathryn Dunn Tenpas, a senior fellow at Brookings who studies personnel changes in the government. For other senior level positions, Biden’s turnover is on par with past presidents such as Bill Clinton and George W. Bush.
Kathryn Dunn Tenpas The Wall Street Journal