Campus & Community

Kennedy School’s IOP announced fall fellows

5 min read

An assistant Secretary General of the UN (on sabbatical), the most recent U.S. ambassador to Mexico, and President Kennedy’s advisor and speechwriter, are among those who have been chosen for fellowships this fall at the Kennedy School of Government’s Institute of Politics (IOP). In all, six leading professionals have been selected to spend the fall semester at IOP as resident fellows. Two visiting fellows, Susan Hirschmann, recently departed chief-of-staff to U.S. House Majority Whip Tom DeLay, and Jim Wallis, co-founder of Sojourners magazine, which focuses on religion, politics, and culture, will lead short-term discussion groups with students.

“This exceptional group of fellows brings a breadth of leadership and government experience to the institute,” said IOP Director Dan Glickman. “During this critical time in our country, their perspectives will be of tremendous value to Harvard’s students and the community.”

The resident fellows for fall 2002 are as follows:

Theresa Amato is the president of Citizen Works, a Washington, D.C. – based nonprofit organization that advances justice by strengthening public participation in power. Amato is also the founder and president of the Citizen Advocacy Center, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to building democracy in the western suburbs of Chicago. In March 2000, Amato was hired as the national campaign manager for Ralph Nader’s 2000 presidential campaign, and ran what David Broder of the Washington Post called “the best campaign” and what Mike Wallace termed “the only campaign with a pulse.” She has appeared on numerous radio and television programs and continues to speak and publish on effecting change, progressive issues, and third-party politics.

Stuart Butler is vice president for Domestic and Economic Policy Studies at The Heritage Foundation in Washington, D.C. Butler, an expert on health, welfare, and Social Security policy, plans and oversees the foundation’s research and publications on all domestic issues. Most recently, he has played a prominent role in the debate over health care and Social Security reform, arguing for solutions based on individual choice and market competition. His proposal for tax reform and other measures to achieve affordable universal health insurance coverage has earned praise across the political spectrum. In 1999 he was cited the by the National Journal as one of the “dozen key players” in the debate over how to deal with the uninsured.

Jeffrey Davidow departed the U.S. ambassador’s residence in Mexico City earlier this month. He has previously served as ambassador to Zambia and Venezuela, and was assistant secretary of state for Inter-American Affairs from 1996 until 1998. A Foreign Service officer of the U.S. Department of State, he has spent much of his 35-year career focusing on Latin America. In addition to his ambassadorial positions, he has served in American embassies in Guatemala, Chile, and Venezuela. He also was posted in South Africa and Zimbabwe.

Gil Garcetti served as the district attorney for Los Angeles County, the leader of the country’s largest nonfederal, prosecutorial agency from 1992 to 2000. In 1972, he helped found the nation’s first prosecutorial agency to have a division devoted to consumer and environmental protection. Five years later, Garcetti was put in charge of the office’s Special Investigation Division, whose sole jurisdiction was the investigation and prosecution of elected officials, police officers, and other public officials. In 2000, after an unsuccessful third-term re-election bid, Garcetti devoted himself to helping his son Eric campaign and win a seat on the Los Angeles City Council.

Gillian Martin Sorensen is on sabbatical from the United Nations, where she serves as assistant secretary general for external relations. She is responsible for outreach to civil society, including accredited nongovernmental organizations around the world. Sorensen served for four years (1993-96) as special adviser for public policy to Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali, where her duties in that post included directing the United Nations worldwide 50th anniversary observances in 1995. From 1978 to 1990, she served as New York City commissioner for the United Nations and Consular Corps, head of the City’s liaison office with the world’s largest diplomatic community. For three years (1990-93), she served as president and chief executive officer of the National Conference of Christians and Jews, the country’s oldest human relations organization dedicated to fighting bias, bigotry, and racism in America.

Theodore Sorensen served for 11 years as policy adviser, legal counsel, and speechwriter to Senator and President Kennedy. Sorensen, who was deeply involved in such matters as the Cuban missile crisis, civil rights legislation, and the decision to go to the moon, has practiced international law at the New York law firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison since 1966. Now senior counsel, Sorensen’s practice focuses on international business and governmental transactions in all parts of the world. He is the author of several books on the presidency, politics, and foreign policy, and has had his articles on these subjects appear in Foreign Affairs, The New York Times, and other publications.

The visiting fellows for fall 2002 are as follows:

Susan Hirschmann recently departed as chief-of-staff to House Majority Whip Tom DeLay. The highest-ranking female staff member in the House of Representatives, Hirschmann served as chief-of-staff for five years. In that role, she worked with the House and Senate leadership, the administration, as well as outside coalitions and businesses. She has also served as chief-of-staff to Rep. Van Hilleary and as executive director of Eagle Forum.

Jim Wallis is a national commentator on ethics and public life and a spokesperson for faith-based initiatives to overcome poverty. He is the editor of Sojourners magazine, covering faith, politics, and culture for 30 years, and the convener of Call to Renewal, a national federation of churches, denominations, and faith-based organizations working to conquer poverty. His most recent book is “Faith Works: Lessons From the Life of an Activist Preacher” (Random House, 2000).