Jennifer Akin, MPA

Co-Director of Applied Research

Army spouse

Jenny Akin is the Co-Director of Applied Research, responsible for overseeing Blue Star Families’ policy, social impact and member research, and program evaluation efforts. In this role, Jenny translates data into understanding to improve military family policies, organizational programming, and employees’ sense of purpose. She is a thought leader on developing attainable social impact goals for Blue Star Families and has developed an interdisciplinary framework to maximize this impact at the Chapter level.

After joining Blue Star Families in 2018 as an Applied Research Analyst Consultant for the annual Military Family Lifestyle Survey (aMFLS), she transitioned to a staff role as the Senior Evaluation Manager in 2019, and was responsible for the design and implementation of Blue Star Families’ program evaluation efforts. Jenny holds nearly a decade of experience in the private sector and academia, supporting national security-related programs at Duke University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, as well as serving as a military policy fellow for the University of North Carolina system, and working in business development for a small defense contractor.

She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Peace, War, and Defense (and History) from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and a Master’s degree in Public Administration from North Carolina State University. She and her active-duty husband currently reside near Fort Bragg, NC, with their son and two dogs.