February, 26, 2020
The John Brademas Center, The Volcker Alliance, and NYU Washington, DC, hosted an exclusive media briefing in conjunction with the release of Paul C. Light’s new report entitled, “The Rebuilder’s Dilemma: Charting the Impact of Government Reform on the 2020 Election.” The report focuses on what Americans want from government reform and how that will impact voters’ choices in the 2020 election. It also includes a recommended bipartisan reform agenda.
This workshop was also open to NYU DC Students.
Elaine C. Kamarck is a Senior Fellow in the Governance Studies program as well as the Director of the Center for Effective Public Management at the Brookings Institution. She is an expert on American electoral politics and government innovation and reform in the United States, OECD nations, and developing countries. She focuses her research on the presidential nomination system and American politics and has worked in many American presidential campaigns. Kamarck is the author of “Primary Politics: Everything You Need to Know about How America Nominates Its Presidential Candidates” and “Why Presidents Fail And How They Can Succeed Again.” She is also the author of “How Change Happens—or Doesn’t: The Politics of US Public Policy” and “The End of Government-As We Know It: Making Public Policy Work.” Kamarck is also a Lecturer in Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. She started at the Kennedy School in 1997 after a career in politics and government. She has been a member of the Democratic National Committee and the DNC’s Rules Committee since 1997. She has participated actively in four presidential campaigns and in ten nominating conventions—including two Republican conventions—and has served as a superdelegate to five Democratic conventions. In the 1980s, she was one of the founders of the New Democrat movement that helped elect Bill Clinton president. She served in the White House from 1993 to 1997, where she created and managed the Clinton Administration's National Performance Review, also known as the “reinventing government initiative.” At the Kennedy School, she served as Director of Visions of Governance for the Twenty-First Century and as Faculty Advisor to the Innovations in American Government Awards Program. In 2000, she took a leave of absence to work as Senior Policy Advisor to the Gore campaign. Kamarck conducts research on 21st century government, the role of the Internet in political campaigns, homeland defense, intelligence reorganization, and governmental reform and innovation. Kamarck makes regular appearances in the media, including segments on: ABC, CBS, NBC, the BBC, CNN, Fox News Now New England Cable News, and National Public Radio. Kamarck received her Ph.D. in political science from the University of California, Berkeley.
Dr. Paul C. Light is Paulette Goddard Professor of Public Service at New York University's Wagner School of Public Service, a nonresident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, and a nonresident senior fellow of the Volcker Alliance.
Mr. Light came to NYU after serving as vice president and director of governmental studies at the Brookings Institution, designing new initiatives for civic engagement as the director of the public policy program at the Pew Charitable Trusts, educating future public servants as professor and associate dean of the University of Minnesota’s Hubert H. Humphrey Institute, strengthening public management as a senior advisor to US Senator John Glenn and the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee, and overseeing the research agenda at the National Academy of Public Administration.
Mr. Light was also a special consultant to the 1988 National Commission on the Public Service, which was chaired by former Federal Reserve Board chairman, Paul A. Volcker, and has advised Mr. Volcker on public service issues ever since. He is a frequent commentator on public service, has testified on public service issues before the US Congress three dozen times over the past two decades, and is the author twenty-six books, of which four have won national book awards. His most recent book is The Government-Industrial Complex: Tracking the True Size of Government, 1984-2019.
Thomas W. Ross joined the Volcker Alliance as president in July 2016. He remains president emeritus of the seventeen-campus University of North Carolina having served as President from 2011 to 2016. Mr. Ross also serves as the Sanford Distinguished Fellow in Public Policy at the Duke University Sanford School of Public Policy.
Prior to becoming President of the UNC System, Mr. Ross served as President of Davidson College, executive director of the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation, director of the North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts, a Superior Court judge, chief of staff to a US Congressman, a member of a Greensboro, NC law firm and as an Assistant Professor of Public Law and Government at UNC-Chapel Hill’s School of Government.
Active in civic and community activities, Mr. Ross currently serves on the Volcker Alliance Board of Directors as well as the Board of Directors of The Rensselaerville Institute and The National Center for State Courts. Mr. Ross also serves on the Board of Directors of Bausch Health Companies where is he is the lead independent director. He has served previously on the Board of Governors of the Center for Creative Leadership, the executive committee of the State Higher Education Executive Officers Association, the Board of Directors of the National System Heads Association, the Association of Governing Boards’ Council of Presidents, and the Council on Competitiveness. Additionally, he has served on the boards of the National Humanities Center, the David H. Murdock Research Institute, the NC Biotechnology Center, and the UNC Health Care System. A former chairman of the UNC Greensboro Board of Trustees, he has previously served on the Boards of Visitors for UNCG, UNC-Chapel Hill, and Wake Forest University and the Board of Trustees at Davidson College.
Mr. Ross has received numerous awards and accolades for his public service and professional achievements. His many contributions to the judicial system have been recognized through the William H. Rehnquist Award for Judicial Excellence (2000), given annually to one state judge in the nation; Governing Magazine’s National Public Official of the Year Award (1994); the Foundation for the Improvement of Justice Award (1995); the American Society of Criminology President’s Award for Distinguished Contributions to Justice (2007); and the NC Bar Association Citizen Lawyer Award (2010). He has also been honored with The North Carolina Chamber of Commerce Distinguished Public Service Award (2016), The Echo Foundation’s Award Against Indifference (2015), Distinguished Alumni Awards from Davidson (2001) and the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Law (2005), the UNC-Chapel Hill Alumni Association’s Distinguished Service Award (2015), and an honorary doctorate from UNCG. In addition, he has received the Boy Scouts of America Silver Beaver Award (1993), the National Boy Scouts of America Distinguished Eagle Scout Award (1999), the Terry Sanford Citizen of the Year Award (2017) and the Order of the Long Leaf Pine (1999).
Born and raised in Greensboro, NC, Mr. Ross holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Davidson College (1972) and graduated with honors from the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Law (1975). He is married to Susan Donaldson Ross, a former executive director of the Greensboro Bar Association. They have two adult children.
Jonathan Voss joined Lake Research Partners in 2011. He has become an expert in helping clients develop strategy and effectively communicate to move audiences in support of key issues including protecting the environment for future generations, ensuring every child has a quality public education no matter the zip code they live in, and restoring the balance in our economy so that working people can sustain a family no matter what they look like or where they come from. Jonathan’s clients include Ascend at the Aspen Institute, AFT, Afterschool Alliance, America’s Voice, Center for American Progress, Center for Community Change, Choose Clean Water Coalition, Community Service Society of New York, Demos, ecoAmerica, Food Policy Action, Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, NCPSSM, The Nature Conservancy, NEA, NextGen Climate Action, New America Foundation, The Opportunity Agenda, Potomac Conservancy, SEIU, Sierra Club, UnidosUS, and The Wilderness Society.
Originally from Orange County, New York, Jonathan started working on political campaigns after college in New York City and around the country. He has a master’s degree in public administration from NYU’s Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service and has a bachelor’s degree in politics from NYU. He lives in Washington, DC with his wife and daughter.