About Us


The mission of the Maurice A. Ferré Institute for Civic Leadership is to advance civic leadership and engagement, social justice, and inclusive civil infrastructure. The vision of the Ferré Institute is to impact positive social change through its innovative academic, research, and community-oriented programs.



Agatha S. Caraballo, Founding Director, Maurice A. Ferré Institute for Civic Leadership                                 

Office: PCA 257 | Phone: 305-348-1006 | Email: acarabal@fiu.edu

Dr. Caraballo is the Founding Director of the Maurice A. Ferré Institute for Civic Leadership and an Associate Teaching Professor in the Department of Public Policy and Administration at the Steven J. Green School of International and Public Affairs at Florida International University (FIU). She is also an Affiliate Faculty in the African and African-Diaspora Studies program and Master of Arts in Global Affairs degree program.


Amanda KnappCoordinator, Maurice A. Ferré Institute for Civic Leadership

Office: PCA 257 | Phone: 305-348-1006 | Email: amknapp@fiu.edu 

Amanda is a Ph.D. student in Public Affairs, concentrating her research on Human Trafficking Policy in the United States. She has over ten years of educational experience and is an FIU alumnus of the FIU Master of Science International Intercultural Education program. During her master’s, Amanda focused her research on Human Trafficking in Latin America and completed the Graduate Certificate in Latin American and Caribbean Studies Certificate. Amanda dedicates much of her time to community and civic involvement.


Alexandra Lebron, Graduate Assistant

Office: PCA 257 | Phone: 305-348-1006 | Email: alebron@fiu.edu 

As the Ferré Institute's first graduate assistant, Alexandra is proud to be part of a team committed to advancing social justice and equity both in the local community as well as on a global scale. She is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in International Crime and Justice at FIU after having received her B.A. in Anthropology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and M.Sc. in Primate Conservation from Oxford Brookes University in the U.K. Her research interests broadly include conservation criminology, women and crime, and Indigenous rights.

The Institute 

In 2023, the Maurice A. Ferré Institute for Civic Leadership will open its doors in the new SIPA II building. Catalyzed by a $2 million investment from the Maurice A. Ferré Foundation, combined with the resources of the Green School, the Ferré Institute builds upon and honors the life work of a legend who championed civic leadership, community infrastructure, and social justice.

fi-2.1.jpgPictured: Ferré Institute Reading Room