Michael Crow became the 16th president of Arizona State University in 2002. He was previously executive vice provost of Columbia University, where he

was also professor of science and technology policy in the School of

International and Public Affairs. Crow served as the chief strategist of

Columbia’s research enterprise and is also a Fellow of the American

Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and a member of the

Council on Foreign Relations.


Thomas Bailey is the George and Abby O’Neill Professor of Economics and

Education at Teachers College, Columbia University. He is also Director of

the Community College Research Center and two National Centers: the

Center for Analysis of Postsecondary Education and Employment and the

Center for the Analysis of Postsecondary Readiness. In 2010, Arne Duncan,

Secretary of Education, appointed him chair of the Committee on Measures

of Student Success, which developed recommendations for community

colleges to comply with completion rate disclosure requirements under the

Higher Education Opportunity Act. Bailey has been a member of the National

Academy of Education since 2012.


Ronnie L. Booth is the third president of Tri-County Technical College.

During his seven years at the school, Dr. Booth has launched the College’s

first two branch campuses with a third branch soon to open. He has also

initiated several new programs, including the Gateway to College program

for high school drop-outs and the Bridge to Clemson program with Clemson

University. He previously served as vice president of external programs at

Gainesville College in Georgia and in various capacities at Piedmont

College, Gordon-Cornwell Theological Seminary, and numerous other



Katherine Newman is the Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic

Affairs at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Her office oversees the

academic missions of the campus in education, scholarship, and outreach

and services. Prior to her current position she was the James B. Knapp

Dean of the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences and Professor of Sociology

at Johns Hopkins. She was one of the original members of the Saguaro

Seminar and has taught at Princeton, Harvard, and Columbia. A noted

sociologist, Newman has written 12 books on the working poor, middle class

economic insecurity and school violence.


Ross Gittell is Chancellor of the Community College System of NH. He has

an extensive background in university teaching and strategic planning.

Gittell’s focus has been on applying economic, organizational and

management theory to regional, state, and community economic

development issues. He has been a resource for non-profit and business

decision makers nationally on issues such as economic policy, workforce

development, job creation strategies, community development, and the

business climate


Antonia Hernandez became president and chief executive officer of

California Community Foundation, a large and active philanthropic

organization in Southern California, in 2004. The foundation supports

nonprofit organizations and public institutions with funds for health and

human services, affordable housing, early childhood education, community

arts and culture and other areas of need. Prior to this position, Ms.

Hernandez was president and general counsel of the Mexican American

Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF), a national nonprofit and

advocacy organization dedicated to protecting the civil rights of the nation’s



Dr. Sara Goldrick-Rab is the Professor of Educational Policy Studies and

Sociology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her research and writing

discusses the intended and unintended consequences of the college-for-all

movement in the US. In multiple experimental, longitudinal, and mixedmethods

research projects, she has examined the implications of financial

aid policies, welfare reform, transfer practices, and a range of interventions

aimed at increasing college attainment among marginalized populations. In

May of 2014, Goldrick-Rab became the founding director of the Wisconsin

HOPE Lab, a research laboratory aimed at identifying new and effective

ways to minimize barriers to college completion.


Prior to going to Georgetown, Professor Holzer served as Chief Economist

for the U.S. Department of Labor and professor of economics at Michigan

State University. He has also been a Visiting Scholar at the Russell Sage

Foundation in 1995, and a Faculty Research Fellow of the National Bureau

of Economic Research. Over most of his career, Professor Holzer’s research

has focused primarily on the low-wage labor market, and particularly the

problems of minority workers in urban areas. In recent years he has worked

on the quality of jobs as well as workers in the labor market, and how job

quality affects the employment prospects of the disadvantaged as well as

worker inequality and insecurity more broadly. He has also written

extensively about the employment problems of disadvantaged men,

advancement prospects for the working poor, and workforce policy more



Andrew Kelly is the director of the Center on Higher Education Reform and

resident scholar in education policy studies at the American Enterprise

Institute. His research focuses on higher education policy, innovation,

financial aid reform, and the politics of education policy. Previously, he

worked as a research assistant at AEI, where his work focused on the

preparation of school leaders, collective bargaining in public schools, and the

politics of education. He is also co-editor of “Stretching the Higher Education

Dollar: How Innovation Can Improve Access, Equity, and Affordability”.


John Ladd became the Administrator of the Office of Apprenticeship in

January 2008. As the Administrator, John has responsibility for oversight of

the National Registered Apprenticeship System, which operates in

cooperation with State agencies, businesses, industry, employers, employer

associations, labor and management organizations and educational

institutions. Prior to his appointment, John served as the Deputy

Administrator for the Office of National Response and the Director of

Regional Management in the Office of Field Operations. John received his

Master’s in Public Policy from the Kennedy School of Government.


Hermann Nehls is the Counselor for Labor, Health and Social Affairs for

DGB, the largest trade union federation. He is responsible for the

development of strategic proposals to DGB’s governing body, development

and implementation of educational policy related to initial and continuing

training with the interests of DGB, and international duties.


Dorothy Stoneman is the Founder and CEO of YouthBuild USA, Inc., which

supports over 265 YouthBuild programs in the US and Internationally. She is

also chairman of the National YouthBuild Coalition. After joining the Civil

Rights movement in 1964, Stoneman lived and worked for 24 years in

Harlem. She was first a public school teacher and then director of a

community based day care center before beginning the first YouthBuild

program in East Harlem in 1978 and served as its director for ten years.

Over time she has built grassroots coalitions that have succeeded in

obtaining over one billion dollars of city, state, and federal funds for

community-based organizations to implement programs for youth and

community development in low-income neighborhoods.


Since its founding in 1996, Tom Sander has been Executive Director of the

Saguaro Seminar: Civic Engagement in America, a program at Harvard

Kennedy School that has brought together leading practitioners and thinkers

for a multi-year discussion to develop broad-scale, actionable ideas to fortify

our nation’s civic connectedness. He managed the research teams (and

often served as senior researcher) for the research projects culminating with

the books Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis (2015), American Grace:

How Religion Divides and Unites Us (2010), Better Together (2003) and

Bowling Alone (2000). He was the project manager on the Social Capital

Community Benchmark Survey – the largest survey of social capital to-date

(surveying over 30,000 Americans in 41 communities in 2000) – and on two

panel surveys on social capital after the September 11 terrorist attacks.


Kyle (Kylie) Gibson is the Assistant Director of the Saguaro Seminar: Civic

Engagement in America, a research initiative of Professor Robert D. Putnam

at Harvard Kennedy School. She man-ages the overall administration of the

program and provides research administration, human resources, financial,

and events planning guidance the program. She also manages Professor

Putnam’s speaking and travel engagements. Kylie joined the Saguaro

Seminar in the summer of 2008.


Tara Tyrrell is the Staff Assistant at the Saguaro Seminar: Civic Engagement

in America, a re-search initiative of Professor Robert D. Putnam at Harvard

Kennedy School. Tara provides administrative support to the program and

course support to Professor Putnam.

Auden Laurence

Auden Laurence serves as a research assistant to the Saguaro Seminar:

Civic Engagement in America. A current Harvard undergrad, Auden will be

the rapporteur.