Institute of Politics at Harvard Kennedy School Announces Fall 2017 Visiting Fellows

September 5, 2017

Cambridge, MA – The Institute of Politics (IOP) at Harvard Kennedy School is pleased to announce the appointment of Fall 2017 Visiting Fellows.

“This diverse group of policymakers, journalists, political advisors and activists provides a robust platform for dynamic interaction with our students and the larger Harvard community. They represent a wide range of viewpoints, insights and perspectives on the most pressing challenges facing local, state and national leaders and society as a whole – from race and politics to the devastating opioid crisis affecting communities throughout America. They will stimulate discussion in the Institute of Politics’ tradition of encouraging civil discourse and respectful exchange of ideas,” said Bill Delahunt, Acting Director of the IOP.

Cornell William Brooks will join the IOP as Visiting Fellow and Director of Campaigns and Advocacy Program (CAP). Brooks will lead a semester-long series of interactive discussions that will help undergraduates build a broader portfolio of experience for strategic use on political and advocacy efforts‎.  He is a fourth-generation ordained minister, civil rights attorney, social justice activist, coalition builder, and writer.  Most recently, he served as the 18th President and CEO of the NAACP. Under his leadership, the NAACP won 11 legal victories against voter suppression and increased the viability, visibility and breadth of grassroots activism. Brooks is currently a regular contributor for CNN; Visiting Professor of Ethics, Law, and Justice Movements at Boston University; and a Senior Fellow at the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU Law School.

The Visiting Fellows program brings distinguished veterans of public life to campus for a limited, yet comprehensive number of events. The program is designed to provide short-term engagement with the student community, particularly undergraduate students.

"We are looking forward to welcoming these exceptional individuals to the Institute of Politics. The Fellows and Study Groups Program has always been committed to providing a space for diverse thought and intellectual discussion between students and practitioners with experience in the real world of politics. We are excited to continue that tradition and facilitate thoughtful discourse on campus this semester," said Jason Ge and Emily Hall, Co-Chairs of the IOP Fellows and Study Groups Program

Five Visiting Fellows are being announced today.

Gov. Steven L. Beshear served as the 61st Governor of Kentucky from 2007-2015. He also served as Attorney General from 1979-1983, and Lieutenant Governor from 1983-1987 and was a member of the Kentucky House of Representatives from 1974-1979. He is the author of People Over Politics and served as a Menschel Senior Leadership Fellow at the Harvard School of Public Health in 2017.  He currently is a senior member of Stites & Harbison, PLLC.  Gov. Beshear will explore issues related to health care, the opioid crisis and bipartisan leadership.

Mary Katharine Ham and Guy Benson are co-authors of End of Discussion -- an updated edition published in August 2017, featuring a new foreword reflecting President Donald Trump's election. The conservative duo's book focuses on concerns about the stifling of honest debate and open discourse in America. Benson is the Political Editor of Townhall.com and a Fox News contributor who appears regularly on the nationally-syndicated Hugh Hewitt Show and NPR’s All Things ConsideredHam is a senior writer at The Federalist and a CNN contributor who co-moderated ABC News' 2016 GOP presidential debate in New Hampshire.

Corey R. Lewandowski is President and CEO of Lewandowski Strategic Advisors, LLC a government and public affairs consulting firm. As a TV political commentator, he provides on-air analysis on political news of the day as well as an in-depth understanding of the political process and the administration of President Donald J. Trump.  During a portion the 2016 campaign he served as Donald Trump’s chief political adviser and campaign manager.  In that capacity he oversaw all aspects of the historic presidential campaign.  He appears regularly on major television networks, and is quoted extensively on political issues in major print outlets.

Joe Slade White is an expert in creative television strategy and messaging, and has served as former Vice President Joe Biden’s media consultant for the last 22 years. A veteran of over 400 political campaigns, White has appeared as a commentator on media and politics for CBS, CNN, MSNBC; in the New York Times and the Washington Post; and on National Public Radio’s “All things Considered.” White began his political career at 21 while a senior at Georgetown University on the staff of Senator George McGovern’s 1972 Presidential campaign. As a Visiting Fellow he will provide students with a behind the scenes look at how real political campaigns win and lose, and give his analysis of the four avoidable mistakes that made the election of President Trump possible.

Previously announced as Visiting Fellows are Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski, co-hosts of “Morning Joe” on MSNBC.

Read more about the program and see Fellows’ full biographies at http://iop.harvard.edu/fellows.

Media Contact: Doug Gavel, doug_gavel@harvard.edu (617) 495-1115