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.
“Broadening the range and depth of opportunity for students to hear from and engage with experts, leaders and policy-shapers is a cornerstone of the Institute of Politics. We welcome the breadth of thought-provoking viewpoints on race, gender, politics and the media,” said Bill Delahunt, IOP Acting Director.
The Visiting Fellows joining the IOP for the 2017-18 academic year are: Cornell William Brooks | Gov. Steven L. Beshear | Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough | Mary Katharine Ham and Guy Benson | Mayor Sylvester “Sly” James, Jr. | Corey R. Lewandowski | Robby Mook | Reince Priebus | Sean Spicer | Joe Slade White
Cornell William Brooks joins the IOP as Visiting Fellow and Director of Campaigns and Advocacy Program (CAP). Brooks 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.
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 1973-1979.
Joe Scarborough is the co-host of MSNBC's “Morning Joe” and the author of the New York Times bestseller “The Last Best Hope” and bestsellers “Rome Wasn’t Burnt in a Day” and “The Right Path.” Scarborough served as a member of Congress from 1994 to 2001.
Mika Brzezinski is the co-host of MSNBC’s "Morning Joe," founder of the “Know Your Value” movement, and the author of three best-selling books, “All Things At Once,” “Knowing Your Value,” and “Obsessed: America’s Food Addiction and My Own.”
Mary Katharine Ham and Guy Benson are co-authors of "End of Discussion" -- an updated edition of which was published in August 2017, featuring a new foreword reflecting President Donald Trump's election. The conservative duo's book focuses on concerns about the 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 Considered."
Ham is a senior writer at The Federalist and a CNN contributor who co-moderated ABC News' 2016 GOP presidential debate in New Hampshire.
Sylvester “Sly” James, Jr. is serving his second term as Mayor of Kansas City, Missouri after entering politics in 2011. His agenda focuses on four components: efficiency, employment, enforcement and education. James serves in a leadership capacity on various civic boards as well as the African American Mayors Association and the National Conference of Democratic Mayors. Following his service in the Marines, James practiced law for nearly 30 years.
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.
Robby Mook joins the IOP and Harvard community as a Visiting Fellow and Resident Scholar at Kirkland House for the 2017-18 academic year. Mook, a CNN political commentator, is a nationally recognized campaign manager and strategist who ran the 2016 presidential campaign for Hillary Clinton. He is currently a Senior Fellow with the new bipartisan Defending Digital Democracy project at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. The project, also co-sponsored by the IOP and the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy, will identify and recommend strategies, tools and technology to protect the democratic process from cyber and information attacks.
Reince Priebus most recently served as White House Chief of Staff under President Donald J. Trump, supporting the President, managing the White House staff, and collaborating with Members of Congress and other key policymakers in advancing the President’s agenda.
Prior to managing the White House staff, Reince served as the longest-serving chairman of the Republican National Committee in modern history. He oversaw a dramatic turnaround of the RNC, rescuing its finances, repairing its operations, and rebuilding its ground game. He left the RNC as one of the winningest chairmen of either political party in American history.
Sean Spicer served as Press Secretary and Acting Communications Director for President Donald J. Trump during the first half of 2017. Before he joined the White House senior staff, he was communications director of the Republican National Committee from 2011 to 2017, and its chief strategist from 2015 to 2017. Spicer’s decades-long career in Republican politics includes multiple communications roles in the House of Representatives, Assistant U.S. Trade Representative and top advisor to presidential campaigns. He recently signed with Worldwide Speakers Group as a speaker on a range of topics including providing perspectives on the Trump administration, politics and conservative issues. A Rhode Island native and Connecticut College graduate, he also holds a master’s degree from the Naval War College and serves as a commander in the U.S. Navy Reserve. Spicer will engage with the Harvard community throughout the 2017-18 academic year.
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.