Meet the Staff


Philip Zisman, Executive Director

Phil Zisman was appointed the Association’s Executive Director in May of 2011. He is also a Distinguished Lecturer in the Department of Public Management at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, in New York City.  For 12 years prior to becoming Executive Director and joining the faculty at John Jay, Phil was the first Inspector General of the City of Yonkers, NY, and created that office.

According to Phil, “the Association was very important to my professional development as an inspector general. By attending the Inspector General Institute and a number of Association conferences, I developed a network of contacts and friends within the inspector general community who both inspired me and served as important resources as I worked to build an effective local municipal inspector general office in Yonkers.”

As Executive Director, Phil is delighted to be giving back to the IG community that has been so professionally important to him. Phil manages the day-to-day activity of the Association, along with a staff of John Jay students, in the Association’s office, which is housed at the college. The staff’s responsibilities include attending to membership matters, administering the two annual Inspector General Institutes, assisting in the planning for the annual conference, overseeing the issuance of continuing professional education credits, and facilitating the two annual Board of Directors meeting. “It’s rewarding” Phil said, “to work with students in administering the Association. The students are dedicated and energetic and represent the future for the organization.” The Association is lucky to have a strong affiliation with John Jay.

As a John Jay professor, Phil teaches graduate school courses on Government Ethics, Public Employment Law, and Public Sector Inspection and Oversight. He is also an instructor at the Association’s Certified Inspectors General Institute®.

Phil received his law degree from American University, Washington College of Law in 1986.  He earned his Inspector General Certification from the Association of Inspectors General in 2002. Phil’s recent articles include: Inspectors General in Small and Mid-Sized New York Municipalities: A Practical Approach, for a New York State Bar Association Government Law and Policy Journal; and The People’s Watchdog, for the Council of State Governments magazine Capital Ideas. 

Jessica Cabrera, Associate Executive Director for Membership 

Jessica Cabrera is the AIG  Associate Executive Director of Membership.  She first became involved with the Association in 2008 during her pursuit of a Master degree in the Public Administration Inspector General Specialization at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. She began as a graduate student volunteer, and shortly thereafter, became part of the membership services team. 

Jessica’s education and professional interests have always centered on public administration. She previously worked for the City of Toronto, Canada.   She also obtained a Specialized Honors Undergraduate degree in Public Administration at York University. Jessica is currently a Doctoral Candidate in the John Jay College of Criminal Justice/CUNY Graduate Center PhD Program with a Policy Oversight and Administration specialization.  Jessica is an adjunct professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice Master in Public Administration Inspector General Program.  She teaches  courses  on ethics and  government oversight and inspection.  Jessica’s involvement with the Association’s Board of Directors and her work on Institutes and conferences has given  her valuable insights  into the inspector general community.  This has been a significant influence in studies, research and professional growth.

Frank Chen, Special Assistant to the Executive Director 

Frank is a Doctoral Student in the John Jay College of Criminal Justice/CUNY Graduate Center PhD Program with a specialization in Policy Oversight and Administration. He became interested in the AIG when he took Professor Zisman’s class—Introduction to Government Inspection and Oversight. Frank first volunteered at the Association while pursuing his Master’s degree in Public Administration and now works as the Special Assistant to the Executive Director. He is also the Administrative Liaison for the Office of Professor Adam Scott Wandt in the Department of Public Management at John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

As the Special Assistant to the Executive Director, Frank provides technical support for all of the Association’s activities, and is responsible for the administrative preparations for the Association’s semi-annual Certified Inspector General Institute®.

According to Frank, “Working for this Association has been a valuable experience. As a Doctoral student, my work for the Association has given me insights into the data mining skills and resources for quantitative research, and has introduced me the important work that inspectors general perform.”

Outside of the work place, Frank studies Chinese, Russian and Spanish. In addition to his interest in languages, Frank is a certified master of Wushu-Martial Arts earning two world championship medals in 2004 and 2005.

Frank earned both his BS in Economics and MPA-IO at John Jay College of Criminal Justice.