From Our Corner to the Four Corners of the Globe
S p r i n g 2013
The Magazine of the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
URBAN Education | Health Care | Housing | Safety | Transportation | Governance
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
FEAT URE from the dean
inety-nine years ago, the University of Michigan established the nation’s first master’s degree program for training future leaders in city government. For decades, the program produced highly sought-after public service professionals. I’m proud to report that it still does. Although we’ve expanded into a number of policy areas, including education, poverty and inequality, international development, and energy and the environment— and established innovative PhD and BA degree programs—many of our alumni still make their professional homes in local government. There are Ford School alums in mayor’s offices from New York to New Orleans to San Francisco. They're stepping up to the challenges of city management in Detroit, intergovernmental relations in Boston, and community development in Ann Arbor. As we celebrate the 100th anniversary of President Ford’s birthday this year—and anticipate the Ford School’s own centennial next year—it seems appropriate to take stock of local governance and the policy issues that will influence the future of our cities. That’s what the Center for State, Local, and Urban Policy (CLOSUP) is doing under the leadership of director Barry Rabe (p. 5). Among several new projects, the Energy and Environment Initiative will help local leaders explore the policy options available to them as they balance new energy opportunities with environmental priorities. The research center will also build on the success of the Michigan Public Policy Survey (MPPS), a statewide survey of Michigan’s local government leaders, to include jurisdictional comparisons and citizen surveys.
State & Hill Dean: Susan M. Collins Associate Dean: Alan V. Deardorff Director of Communications/Editor: Laura K. Lee (MPP ’96) Publications Manager: Katie Trevathan Lead writers: Erin Spanier, Lillien Waller Writers: Bob Brustman, Ryan Pretzer, Zach Bergson Design: Savitski Design Photographers: Peter Smith, Michigan Photography Printer: University Lithoprinters, Inc. Cover photo: Mike Savitski Let us know what you think:
Such forward thinking characterizes the research, teaching, and policy engagement of Ford School faculty, such as David Harding and Elisabeth Gerber. This winter, David taught a course that explores inner-city life and the challenges of urban policymaking through the lens of the television drama The Wire (p. 10), and Liz began a three-year term as a representative of Washtenaw County on the Southeast Michigan Regional Transit Authority Board. (p. 8). This issue of State & Hill also features Jim Hudak (MPP ’71), who shows how one well-intentioned, well-prepared Ford School alum can make a difference in city governments around the world. We interview Don Borut (MPA ’65), who recently retired from a highly influential career, including twenty-two years as executive director of the National League of Cities (p. 14). And we profile Ruth Browne (MPP/MPH ’83), CEO of the Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health, who marshals the help of community leaders in creative ways to build healthier communities throughout New York City (p. 18). The urban experiment continues to challenge and inform public policy. Cities have changed dramatically in the last century, and where they might be headed is a conversation well worth having. Enjoy this issue of State & Hill, and then share your thoughts with us. Write to us at email@example.com. Sincerely,
firstname.lastname@example.org, or Editor, State & Hill, Ford School, University of Michigan, 735 S. State Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-3091
Susan M. Collins
Joan and Sanford Weill Dean of Public Policy
Regents of the University of Michigan Mark J. Bernstein, Ann Arbor Julia Donovan Darlow, Ann Arbor Laurence B. Deitch, Bloomfield Hills Shauna Ryder Diggs, Grosse Pointe Denise Ilitch, Bingham Farms Andrea Fischer Newman, Ann Arbor Andrew C. Richner, Grosse Pointe Park Katherine E. White, Ann Arbor Mary Sue Coleman, ex officio
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The Magazine of the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
An engaged citizen 5 Barry Rabe on the future of CLOSUP
You can get there from here 8 The possibilities of regional transit
All in the game 10 An interdisciplinary approach to urban policy
Putting out the flames 12 From the health of cities to the health care industry
Itâ€™s a big tent after all 14 Don Borut and the National League of Cities
John Chamberlin 19 Making a life
In addition Order maintenance in the eyes of Olmsted 16 Jacob helps city schools 17 Urban health and the power of community 18 A look back at Grutter v. Bollinger 21 Comparing the advantages in international trade 22 BA student looks toward Syria's future after war 24 Alumna combats violence against women with GenderHopes 25
Departments Faculty News & Awards 26 Class Notes 28 The Last Word 30
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
Ninety-nine years ago, the University of Michigan launched the first graduate public service program to train municipal leaders. Those early students studied economics, law, civil engineering, and landscape design. They were equipped to meet the challenges of the twentieth-century American city, the city of contrasts: affluent yet impoverished, industrial yet immigrant, with both high hopes and modest expectations.
Focus on: URBAN POLICY Cities remain vitally important to American life and lives around the globe. They fuel economic growth, produce the majority of American jobs, and cultivate innovation and creativity. But the organism of the city has become incredibly complexâ€”so, too, have the mandates of its elected officials, managers, administrators, and other leaders. These dedicated public servants require more than a working vocabulary of the astounding array of areas that constitute urban policy, such as education, health care, economic development, housing, transportation, public safety, policing, sanitation, and much more. That broad, deep well of expertise can be found among our alumni and right here on the Ford School faculty and in our programsâ€”now preparing and advising the next generation of urban policy leaders.
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An engaged citizen Barry Rabe on the future of CLOSUP | By Erin Spanier
six-inch bobblehead of Ron Swanson, director of a fictitious Midwestern parks department in the NBC sitcom Parks and Recreation, dominates the meeting table in Barry Rabe ’s office. The bobblehead is something of an enigma.
As an elected fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration, a senior non-resident fellow with the DC-based Brookings Institution, and incoming director of CLOSUP, the Ford School’s Center for Local, State, and Urban Policy, Rabe is a nationally recognized authority on the innovations of, and interactions between, local, state, and federal policymakers. So Swanson—who believes all government is a waste of taxpayer dollars and spends his days actively trying to thwart efforts to improve the park system he oversees—seems somewhat out of place amid the shelves and shelves of books and papers Rabe has read, and written, about public policy, natural resources, public health, and responsible governance. “He was a gift from my sons,” Rabe says, laughing. “But he never fails to launch some interesting conversations about the role of government.”
Illustration: © 2013 Gordon Studer, c/o theispot.com
One of those conversations involves citizen engagement, a topic CLOSUP explored in its most recent Michigan Public Policy Survey (MPPS), a census-based survey launched by Annenberg Professor Brian A. Jacob (Rabe’s predecessor at CLOSUP), of the chief elected and appointed officials in each of the state’s 1,856 municipalities. “What do government officials think of their citizens?” asks Rabe. “Do they believe citizens can play constructive roles in the policy process? Study issues carefully? Contribute with an eye toward the common good?” Picture the dramatic referendums that sweep states during elections, the dozens of online petitions about gun control that followed the Newtown tragedy, or town hall meetings that go awry (like the public hearing that jettisoned plans to convert an abandoned pit into a public park in Parks and Recreation).
“I love to raise this question with students,” says Rabe. “Are we training them to be smarter than anybody else, to make good policy based on their analytic judgment and hand those policies down to people who know less than they do? Or should public policy be whatever the majority wants? Or is it some combination of the two? Can they learn from engaging the public in the process?” Rabe doesn’t share his own view on citizen engagement, but here’s a hint: He’s spent a good deal of his career exploring the conditions that allow state and local governments to innovate and deliver effective public policy. His findings? That those conditions often involve early and extensive citizen engagement, especially when dealing with thorny energy and environmental policy decisions like where to place hazardous waste management facilities. Interestingly, Rabe didn’t begin his academic career with a focus on environmental issues; nor did he begin it at the Ford School. Twenty-five years ago, when Rabe started teaching at U-M, he was hired by the School of Public Health and his research focused on health care and education. It might have been Rabe’s natural inclination to look for the root of the problems he studied that shifted his focus from public health to energy and environmental policy.
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
“I became really intrigued not just by the question of how we take care of people when they’re ill,” says Rabe, “but how to minimize risk [of asthma, cancer, and other illnesses] through environmental exposure.” Eventually, that led Rabe to explore energy policies, as well, “because so many of today’s environmental problems emerge from energy issues.” Rabe is now a national thought-leader in both of these areas (see “Faculty News” on p. 26 for information about Rabe’s most recent national appointment). Of course, highly respected policy leaders aren’t new to the CLOSUP directorship. Rabe is quick to point out the path-setting work of Professor Elisabeth R. Gerber , the founding director of CLOSUP, who built the center’s foundational relationships with state and local leaders, and the more recent work of Brian Jacob, who spearheaded the Michigan Public Policy Survey and launched a half-dozen significant studies that are increasingly influential in the sphere of education policy. As Rabe assumes leadership of CLOSUP, he’ll add another valuable component to the center’s work: the Energy and Environment Initiative. Hydraulic fracturing, freshwater lakes and fisheries, and alternative energy developments offer exciting economic development opportunities for Michigan’s cities and towns—and indeed for cities and towns across the nation. But they also offer deep and pressing challenges for state and local leaders who are forced to choose between environmental and economic priorities in the absence of federal legislation. CLOSUP will help local leaders explore the many policy options available to them.
Focus on: Urban Policy
This winter, CLOSUP sponsored a panel on the policy issues fracking raises for state and local leaders. Speakers included Erich Schwartzel, the editor of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s award-winning news site on natural gas drilling in the Marcellus Shale, and Jacquelyn Pless, a policy associate for the Energy Program of the National Conference of State Legislatures. Christopher Borick, a long-time collaborator of Rabe’s, was on hand to share findings from a new CLOSUP-sponsored study examining public opinion in both Michigan and Pennsylvania on a variety of fracking policy options. “Shale gas is the most environmentally benign form of fossil fuel out there,” explain Rabe and Borick in one of the first academic papers looking at the policies governing the fracking industry. Greenhouse gas emissions? Low. Conventional air contaminants? Low. Economic impact? Monumental. “But shale gas raises a sprawling range of environmental concerns for land and water.” Is it our savior? Is it our downfall? Smart policy might allow us to realize the advantages while avoiding many of the negative consequences. The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, because of its vast shale gas deposits and far-reaching legislation (legislation that invites rapid resource extraction while downplaying long-term environmental considerations) is the state to watch, says Rabe. But is it the state to emulate? That’s the question other local leaders need to ask themselves. To make energy and environmental policy considerations like these even more complex for local government leaders,
“I became really intrigued not just by the question of how we take care of people when they’re ill, but how to minimize risk through environmental exposure.”
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natural resources don’t break down along jurisdictional boundaries, and can’t be adequately addressed by a single city or town in isolation. “This applies to a great many environmental issues,” says Rabe. “What matters is not the township or county boundary, but where water and shale deposits gathered centuries ago.” To manage bioregional assets like these, local government leaders need to create new alliances organized around shared natural resources like a lake, mountain range, or geological feature. And it isn’t unusual for these bioregional alliances to involve the collaboration of dozens of townships, cities, and counties across several states and Canadian provinces. In the Great Lakes Basin, for example, an upcoming CLOSUP survey will help policymakers better understand Great Lakes environmental considerations from the viewpoint of government leaders and residents throughout the watershed.
Photo: SeaWiFS Project, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center, ORBIMAGE
In addition to launching the Energy and Environment Initiative, Rabe will enhance CLOSUP’s highly influential Michigan Public Policy Survey. Launched in 2009 in cooperation with Michigan’s local government associations, the MPPS was designed to capture critical fiscal data as the Great Recession rippled out to local jurisdictions, to identify the challenges and opportunities shared by the state’s municipal government leaders, and to spot and share best practices. To date, CLOSUP has released 23 policy briefs informed by the MPPS—one every six weeks or so—and made dozens of presentations to local government leaders about their findings (for a few MPPS highlights, see the graphic at right and “The Last Word” with Tom Ivacko (MPP ’93) on page 30). Enhancements are likely to include partnerships that will allow for comparisons across jurisdictional boundaries as well as the addition of general citizens to the survey mix, to help local government leaders gauge public opinion. Finally, Rabe is working on a new initiative he calls “CLOSUP in the Classroom.” As a Thurnau Professor (the University of Michigan’s highest honor for undergraduate teaching), Rabe is always searching for new and meaningful ways to involve students in the center’s work. These days, for example, he’s hiring undergraduate and master’s students to assist with a variety of CLOSUP research projects, including a new policy brief he’s co-authoring with master’s candidates Erica Brown (MPP ’13) and Kristy Hartman (MPP ’13). The brief analyzes the findings from CLOSUP’s recently completed public opinion survey on fracking beliefs in Michigan and Pennsylvania. “Fracking really challenges the idea of citizen engagement,” says Brown, “because it’s so technical and the risks and benefits are so uncertain.” Circumstances like these might encourage policymakers to defer to the experts, but public opinion is yielding highly relevant findings. “While the majority of citizens in both states believe the benefits outweigh the costs, most support regulation and taxation of the hydraulic fracturing industry and see shale gas as a public resource, rather than a private one,” says Brown. ■
Funding local government in Michigan (Police and fire departments, road repairs, and the like). Results from the Michigan Public Policy Survey.
72 } 88 }
Percent response rate for the last three waves of the Michigan Public Policy Survey
Percent of Michigan counties that reported an increase in human service needs between 2008 and 2009 (at the start of the Great Recession).
84 } 60 }
Percent of Michigan counties that reported a decrease in state aid during the same time period.
Percent of Michigan jurisdictions that reported increasing numbers of home foreclosures between 2009 and 2010.
46 } 13 }
Percent of Michigan jurisdictions that reported increasing numbers of tax delinquencies between 2009 and 2010.
Percent of Michigan officials who reported they can “seldom” or “almost never” trust their citizens to be responsible participants in local governance.
Percent of Michigan county officials who reported they can “seldom” or “almost never” trust the state government in Lansing. Percent of Michigan city leaders who believe that the system for funding local government in the state is in need of significant reform.
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
Focus on: Urban Policy
You can get there from here RTA Board representative Elisabeth R. Gerber sees the possibilities transit can offer for Southeast Michigan—and for the region’s hardest hit city | By Lillien Waller
etting from Detroit to Ann Arbor is a trip in more ways than one. The two cities are 43 miles apart. But the expense and inconvenience of driving deters many from making the trip. Trains and buses run daily, but the schedules are slim and the costs prohibitive for the average commuter.
More than half of the state’s population resides in southeast Michigan, yet the Detroit metropolitan area remains one of the largest in the country without a regional transportation Macomb system.
Washtenaw 94 23
Above: The new RTA board has a mandate to integrate transit across four southeast Michigan counties: Oakland, Macomb, Washtenaw, and Wayne. Right: Thirty-three regional transit stakeholders—including some Ford School alums—answered questions at the Integrated Policy Exercise in January.
Hopefully, that won’t be true for much longer. In December 2012, the state legislature passed a package of bills authorizing a Regional Transit Authority (RTA) in southeast Michigan, covering Macomb, Oakland, Washtenaw, and Wayne counties.
But there’s a long road ahead before the RTA evolves into actionable policies and an integrated transportation system. Elisabeth R. Gerber , recently named the Jack L. Walker, Jr. Professor of Public Policy, has spent more than a decade researching economic development, regional governance, and transportation policy. And, in April 2013 she will begin a three-year term representing Washtenaw County on the new Southeast Michigan Regional Transit Authority Board. “The way I like to conduct my own research is simultaneously as an academic scholar and as a practitioner,” explains Gerber. “I think [the applied approach] has made my academic work so much better,” she says. “I’ve spent a lot of time trying to understand the very diverse perspectives of the many stakeholders who are involved in these issues.”
Gerber served as the first director of the Center for Local, State, and Urban Policy (CLOSUP), and regularly teaches the Ford School’s “Applied Policy Seminar.” In January, Gerber led her fourth “Integrated Policy Exercise” (IPE), a policy simulation in which master’s students take on the roles of stakeholders—such as legislators, journalists, and community representatives— engaged in a contemporary issue. She selected regional transit as the IPE’s focus last summer, when the RTA bills were pending in the legislature. “I started working on it and talking to people and trying to figure out, ‘Is this thing going to pass?’ Of course, everyone said no. So I said, ‘Whew! Okay, that’s a safe one; I won’t have to change my scenario mid-course,’ which we did anyway,” she says, chuckling.
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“All of the problems of regional governance come to a head in transportation policy.” Elisabeth R. Gerber
As it turned out, Governor Rick Snyder signed the RTA into law a mere month before the IPE began—which certainly amped up its authenticity. So did the thirty-three stakeholders and decisionmakers Gerber successfully invited to attend. “All of the problems of regional governance come to a head in transportation policy. Organizing the IPE around this issue brought me into close contact with the people who are immediately involved right now in regional transportation at the state, local, county, and metropolitan levels,” she observes. “My goal on the RTA board is to advance and promote simultaneously Washtenaw County’s interests and the broader region’s interests and try to help find ways that the RTA can help Washtenaw County and Washtenaw County can help the RTA. A big part of that is knowing who our stakeholders are, what roles they play, and what their different pieces are in the big puzzle.”
Which way forward for cities? The board is a ten-member decision-making body for the RTA, with mandates to integrate existing transit across the four-county region and establish new cross-county transit corridors. Another key issue will be to find an answer to the controversial question: rail, rolling transit (buses), or both? Even before the RTA legislation passed, the Washtenaw County Commission urged the state to omit Washtenaw from the RTA. And immediately after the RTA was authorized, Ann Arbor City Council passed a unanimous resolution objecting to the county’s inclusion. According to Gerber, the council and commission are still in discussions. But the concerns for some—that rolling rapid transit in new corridors might come at the expense of rail, as well as the highly functioning Ann Arbor Transit Authority (AATA)—are real.
Ann Arbor Mayor John Hieftje teaches local government at the Ford School and has worked on the issue of regional transit for more than a decade. He doubts that rail will be likely with the RTA legislation as written. “There are over 10,000 U-M employees who live along the east/west rail line. And yet this bill makes the commuter rail option the region has been working on for many years all but impossible,” says Hieftje. “That said,” he adds, “I have great confidence in Prof. Gerber’s abilities to steer this in a good direction while protecting the excellent asset we have in the AATA.” Indeed, Washtenaw County has one of the best transit systems in the region. Gerber notes, however, that the real beneficiary of a new transportation system in southeast Michigan will be metro Detroit. “Part of what the RTA is going to have to do is improve [Detroit’s] planning processes, their funding processes, and the way their services are integrated. That’s really the primary goal of the RTA. If we can do that, we’re a success.” She explains that the whole idea of a regional transportation system is to connect urban areas to each other, which expands and enhances everything from business development to economic opportunities for residents. “A regional transit system makes cities bigger. If you make it easier for people to get around, then that enhanced size becomes more real for more people. All of a sudden, my opportunities aren’t just here in Ann Arbor. All of a sudden, my world gets bigger.” ■
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
Focus on: Urban Policy
All in the game An interdisciplinary approach to urban policy | By Lillien Waller
(L-R): Christina Hajj (MPP ’13), David J. Harding, Matt Filter (MPP ’13), and DawnLynne Kacer (MPP ’13)
“Aw yeah. That golden rule.”—Bunk Moreland
irty and disheveled, Dukie rocks up to his crew in an alley somewhere off Franklin Street in West Baltimore. It’s the last day of a long, hot summer, eighth grade looming like a threat. Namond notices Dukie’s black eye, courtesy of boys from a rival neighborhood. “What happened to you?” he shouts. “Those Terrace boys banged me coming off the train tracks over there by Ramsay Street,” Dukie says. Little Randy pipes up, “They can’t whip on Dukie like that.” Namond concurs: “Nah, only we can whip on Dukie like that.” What happens next is an ill-conceived battle with the boys from the Terrace houses. Dukie, Namond, and Randy exist only within the narrative of HBO’s hit TV drama, The Wire,
but their struggles with poverty, violence, family, and a frayed social safety net offer powerful glimpses of inner-city life. In his award-winning book, Living the Drama: Community, Conflict, and Culture among Inner-City Boys, David J. Harding , associate professor of public policy and sociology, examined the influence of neighborhoods on the views, romantic and sexual behaviors, and outcomes of sixty adolescent black and Latino boys in Boston’s poorest areas. One of Harding’s key findings concerned the structural quality of pervasive neighborhood violence; what to outsiders may appear to be a dispute based on a petty grievance— stolen swag, say, or a girl’s honor—more likely stems from
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a system of rivalry and conflict that organizes everything from personal identities to movements within and between social spaces. “Violence ebbs and flows,” Harding writes, “… as young men rep (represent) their neighborhoods defending their reputations, and exacting retribution for previous losses and signs of disrespect.”
“...and all the pieces matter.”—Lester Freamon
arding’s research into urban poverty, inequality, and incarceration and prisoner re-entry helps make him the ideal person to teach “Urban Public Policy through the Lens of HBO’s The Wire,” a course that engages these issues by examining inner-city life and, according to the syllabus, “the politics, trade-offs, and often unintended consequences of many urban public policy decisions.” The word “teach” may lack imagination, however. The course was conceived and co-developed by Matt Filter (MPP ’13), Christina Hajj (MPP ’13), and DawnLynne Kacer (MPP ’13) during their first year at the Ford School. If anything becomes clear upon sitting in on one of the seminars, it is that a collaborative, evolving experiment is taking place—including weekly guest speakers covering different policy areas, student policy briefs and case studies, and peer discussants who help student presenters interrogate ideas and assumptions. “One thing that’s been really beneficial is that a lot of students in class come from so many different backgrounds. It’s a safe space to talk about new policy issues and give each other feedback,” observes Hajj. It’s an approach Harding encourages and applauds. “I think it works well. It really gives them ownership and forces them to do the bigger picture thinking of ‘what is important here?’ What should we talk about? What do we know? What do we not know? Normally in a course, the professor creates the structure and tries to deliver it. I would definitely do this again in another course.” After watching and talking about The Wire among themselves, the three students put out feelers on Facebook to discover who might actually be interested in a public policy course using the show as inspiration.
“We have some great classes at the Ford School on education policy, on labor policy, on drugs, but where can we weave them all together?” says Kacer about their initial brainstorming. The response was phenomenal: more than seventy students expressed an interest. And so it began. “Everyone [in the administration] was very supportive,” she continues. “It was interesting because there really wasn’t a defined process for students creating a new class.” “I don’t think that a lot of other schools would allow students to create their own class out of nothing, and David just volunteered to do it,” adds Filter. “I think that’s a good success story that the Ford School was receptive to the idea.”
“We got our thing, but it’s just part of the big thing.”—Zenobia Dawson
he course isn’t about the television series so much as it is an interdisciplinary synthesis of issues the series has been praised for addressing so realistically, including safety, policing, and crime, as well as education, jobs, economic development, gender, and family. The focus on public policy also makes the Ford School course unique within a veritable cottage industry of university courses around the country that are either based on or inspired by The Wire. Scholars and even policymakers often conceive of the various domains of urban policy as discrete units, but the course intentionally de-silos these areas—shows how they are interrelated—even as “a lot of the interconnections are between the criminal justice system and other domains, whether we’re talking about, neighborhood redevelopment, or education, or the school-to-prison pipeline, or health,” explains Harding.
“What does it do to someone’s health,” he continues, “living in a high crime neighborhood, where they’re constantly under the stress of potentially being victimized or having their family and friends victimized? So de-siloing is definitely a big part of it.” The course is a great example of what happens when there is meaningful synchronicity between faculty research and student interest. It demonstrates a larger point, however, about the interdisciplinary nature of public policy. And that’s the kind of thinking that will have the most impact on issues facing America’s urban centers. ■
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
Focus on: Urban Policy
Putting out the flames: from the health of cities to the health care industry By Bob Brustman
“I’d been to college,” he recalls, “but didn’t really know what I wanted to do. Living and working in Detroit that summer, I had one of the few epiphanies I’ve had in my life. I saw the city on fire. I remember thinking ‘someone had to do something to help cities.’” “I went back to Yale in the fall and saw a flier about this brand new public policy degree at Michigan through
which you could apply quantitative techniques to solve city and government problems and I thought, ‘that’s perfect.’” Hudak became a member of the school’s inaugural class in the Master of Public Policy (MPP) program. After earning his MPP in 1971, Hudak worked for fellow Ford School graduate Don Borut (MPA ’65) in the City of Ann Arbor’s administrator’s office. Among his duties was serving as the liaison with the “Psychedelic Rangers”—a group of young people recruited to work at citysponsored concerts. The Ann Arbor police had agreed to stay away from the crowds and the concerts so long as drug use, dealing, and other wild behavior were moderated. The Rangers were sort of hall-monitors for the counterculture, charged with keeping the peace within the crowd—thereby keeping the police out. (See p. 14 to read about Borut and the Psychedelic Rangers.) Within a couple years, Hudak was recruited to work with the City of Palo Alto and from there to the financial office of the City of San Francisco. About his trajectory from liaising with Psychedelic Rangers to working on the budget of one of the country’s greatest cities, he credits his public policy education: “It’s really versatile,” he says, “It’s not content specific. I was taught how to analyze problems. I learned techniques and a way of thinking that I have applied to many problems over the years, enabling me to move from police to public works to financial management and more.” The 1967 Detroit Riot started Hudak on a mission to improve cities through local government. Eleven years later, his path curved in relation to another urban tragedy. On November 27, 1978, Hudak was just down the hall when Dan White shot and killed San Francisco Mayor George Moscone and Harvey Milk. After graduating from the Ford School, Jim Hudak (MPP ’71) worked in the city administrator's office as a liaison to the Psychedelic Rangers—young people charged with monitoring Ann Arbor summer concert-goers. July 24, 1967: The National Guard attempts to quell rioting on Detroit’s west side.
Newspaper: Ann Arbor District Library
n the summer of 1967, James B. Hudak (MPP ’71) watched Detroit burn. He was between his sophomore and junior years as an undergraduate at Yale. A friend got him a summer job working the night shift at a Chrysler assembly plant in Detroit. He lived with a bunch of guys in a rental on Lake St. Clair. At the end of July, at night, he looked across the lake from his home and saw Detroit in flames. He watched giant troop transports filled with Army and National Guard soldiers landing at Selfridge Air Force Base.
Photo: © Bettmann, CORBIS
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Hudak says the atmosphere for local governments had turned deeply sour. People didn’t respect or trust public officials. City officials were assassinated, and city hall was stormed and firebombed. California’s Proposition 13 passed, decreasing property taxes and severely restricting the options for local governments. Hudak left San Francisco and began working with Andersen Consulting, consulting with cities around the globe. He worked with the City of Detroit on a public/private partnership. He worked with Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, as apartheid ended, helping the city progress socially and economically in a turbulent time. He worked with Madrid as the European Union coalesced, helping the city adjust from being the center of a country to a city on the edge of a unified continent. And he worked in Japan and Australia on concepts for a “city of the future”— designed to capitalize on those nations’ current and future resources. In 1990, he was recruited by one of his partners for a different kind of project—health care. At Kaiser Permanente, he recalls, “doctors had been fighting with one another for years about where to do some tests. My partner said ‘I’ve got this guy who worked with the Japanese and Australians for years and who worked with South Africans and apartheid—maybe he can do something with doctors.’” And Hudak did, quite successfully, sending his career in another direction, leading right up to the present and his position as chairman and CEO of Paradigm Management Services. Paradigm manages care for catastrophically injured patients who are receiving workers’ compensation. The company has had tremendous success, with 60 percent of their clients released to return to work compared to the industry average of 13 percent. As a young man, watching Detroit tear itself apart, Hudak thought that smart, trained, well-intentioned people could make a difference. That he could make a difference. His work has proven him correct and he credits the Ford School with a central role in his success. “I went to the Ford School thinking that government was the way to make a difference. I learned a broad set of skills with which I could analyze issues and problems, set directions and make good policy. My education made me a broad thinker about a large number of issues, both public and private.” ■
October 2006: Jim Hudak pictured with his children at the reception for the Joan and Sanford Weill Hall dedication.
Meet Jim Hudak James (Jim) B. Hudak (MPP ‘71) is chair of the Ford School Committee, a group of volunteer leaders from the public and private sectors who support the work of the school.
“I love being on this committee,” Hudak says, “It’s an extremely interesting group of people who are or have been very involved in public policy issues. We have great discussions and the committee’s work supporting the school is important to each of us.” Hudak will also serve as co-chair of the Ford School Campaign Council. In this role he will serve as an official voice of the Ford School Campaign, work with the school on development strategy, and convene meetings of people who have an interest in policy. “I get to tell the story about how the Ford School really matters and makes a difference. I like telling that story!”
Hudak’s wife, the Rev. Mary L. Hudak, has recently agreed to serve as the rector of St. Michael’s Church in Carmichael, CA. She’s been associate rector of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Orinda, CA, since her ordination in 2008. The Hudaks’ tradition of giving to the Ford School goes back to 1985 and includes annual gifts, contributions to past capital campaigns, company matching gifts, and student support. Hudak’s legacy is found in Weill Hall’s Hudak Family Computing Center. In addition, the Hudak family established the Hudak Family Fellowship Fund in 2008 to provide scholarships for graduate students.
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
Focus on: Urban Policy
It’s a big tent after all: Don Borut and the National League of Cities By Erin Spanier
ublic protests were common; drugs and riots weren’t uncommon; and crowds of young people spent their summers in tents on city grounds—no jobs, no parents, no plans—simply because Ann Arbor was a happening place to be. “It was a very different time,” says Ford School alum Don Borut (MPA ’65) of Ann Arbor in the ’60s. That’s a bit of an understatement.
the people’s peace force explained it would be “keeping the traffic happening and making sure [concertgoers] don’t forget and mess up straight people’s Sundays by walking all over their back yards and their golf courses.” They’d also be “keeping a check on dealing of bogus downer-drugs and too flagrant open dealing of any kind… and helping the hurt or bummed-out find medical facilities.”
After interning in the Ann Arbor city administrator’s office as a policy student in 1964, Borut was hired as assistant to the city administrator after graduation and stayed through what was arguably Ann Arbor’s most turbulent era. To keep the peace, city officials launched a free summer rock and roll concert series in Don Borut (MPA ’65) Huron Park. Borut’s job? To keep it safe; to make it work. That was no small feat. “Every Sunday we’d have 5,000 kids in the park and this wild music,” recalls Borut. “Every Saturday night I’d pray for rain.”
“Ann Arbor leaders did some very creative things back then,” says Borut of the ’60s. He’s referring not just to the outdoor concerts or their minimally-invasive policing mechanisms, but to policies that integrated low-income housing units in each new development, free summer recreation programs for youth, and treaties the city brokered between student activists and police. Borut should know creativity when he sees it, too. He’s spent the last 40 years in Washington, DC, advocating for local government leaders and fostering local government innovation first as deputy director for the International City/County Management Association (ICMA) and later as executive director of the National League of Cities—a position he held for 22 years until his retirement this January.
For over six years as many as 5,000 people filled Huron Park each weekend to listen to free music.
Newspaper: Ann Arbor District Library
Below, right: Feb. 18, 1970: Demonstrators, eventually numbering 2,000, march from the Diag to Ann Arbor City Hall in protest of the guilty verdict against the Chicago Seven.
Right Photo: Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan
Below, left: Rockin’ and rollin’ at an Ann Arbor Free Concert, a series that began in 1966.
Left Photo: John and Leni Sinclair Papers, Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan
To police the concerts, without inviting unnecessary clashes in an era that seemed to provoke them, Borut hired “Psychedelic Rangers” who monitored the park and called Ann Arbor’s standing police force only if needed. In a 1971 article written by the Rangers for the Ann Arbor Sun,
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Borut with Presidents Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush, two of the many presidents he worked with during his tenure at the National League of Cities.
When asked what people should know about the National League of Cities—which with 100 staff members and 19,000 member cities, towns, and villages, is clearly one of the nation’s most powerful training and advocacy organizations for local government leaders—Borut is quick to answer. The National League of Cities was founded by the leaders of ten state municipal leagues back in the 1920s, he tells me. “It’s not the parent of state municipal leagues; it’s the child.” That relationship is clear in the way the National League of Cities develops the policy proposals that it advocates for on the Hill. While federal government collaboration is often stymied and stalled by partisan bickering, the National League of Cities takes a “big tent” approach, inviting diverse viewpoints. A few years ago, for example, the National League of Cities launched an effort to develop a policy proposal for comprehensive federal immigration reform by appointing a diverse committee of representatives. “The committee was chaired by a Los Angeles council member who had been a police officer,” says Borut. “Some members of the committee were adamant about enforcement. Others wanted undocumented immigrants out. Others recognized that immigrants play an important role in the country and wanted to create pathways to citizenship.” They worked together well and quickly, though, and the policy platform they prepared focused on the perspectives they shared. Because the committee itself had been so diverse, and had still found points of consensus, Borut and his staff were able to speak with a strong voice in conversations with Congress and the White House. Heidi Goldberg (MPP ’98), the league’s program director for early childhood and family economic success, concurs about the nonpartisan spirit of city leaders. “One of the cities I work with very closely is a small city in Texas. I found out after working with them for a while that many of the key anti-poverty champions were Republicans,” says Goldberg. “It can be surprising to us in DC, where political affiliation can be so divisive.”
In addition to policy development and advocacy, the National League of Cities recognizes and disseminates local government innovations, is the go-to source for data on city governance, and advocates on behalf of the public sector and those who serve. “So often, you hear disparaging remarks about elected officials and people in the public sector,” says Borut, “but these are people who are willing to run for office, willing to make decisions that are tough, and trying to make the right decisions to solve a region’s problems in a difficult financial climate. I’m a passionate advocate for local elected officials, and for what the public sector does. It’s not sexy work, but it’s really important.” ■
Ford School Spotlight In March, twenty-five graduate students from the Ford School and around U-M spent a week working on development issues in Cape Verde, the culmination of the school’s annual International Economic Development Program (IEDP). Associate Dean Alan Deardorff led this year’s IEDP, a half-semester course for which Ford School students select a developing country and work with faculty to design a curriculum and research visit.
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
Focus on: Urban Policy
n the center of our nation’s most densely populated city—a city buffeted by noise and commerce and pollution—lies the oasis of Central Park, a lush landscape co-designed in the 1850s by America’s most famous landscape architect, Frederick Law Olmsted. With 270,000 trees and shrubs, miles of winding paths, and dozens of bridges, it was one of 19th century America’s most ambitious public works projects; it was also, it should be said, a bit of a problem.
“For example, right now, many cities respond to disorderly conduct with arrest and prosecution first, but we desperately need less invasive options. One way to imagine those options is to look back at long-forgotten models like those that Olmsted championed.” ■
Center: “The Central Park: A delightful resort for toil-worn New Yorkers,” appearing in Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper in June 1869. Below: A map of Central Park from 1860.
Center Photo: Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-121334
In an effort to protect the park and preserve its character, Olmsted was appointed to oversee a new police force, the Central Park Police. But while this force wore the same uniforms as the city’s existing police officers, its charge was vastly different. Olmsted’s police would focus on the rules required to preserve a shared space, rather than the rules required to protect individuals and their property. The landscape architect instructed his officers to educate citizens about behavioral expectations first, and to punish transgressions only as a last resort. “Olmsted’s ideas about order maintenance policing have been largely forgotten, and that’s unfortunate,” says Thacher.
Top: The Mall in Central Park, circa 1902.
Bottom photo: Library of congress, 2011593042
While Central Park offered a refuge and retreat for the growing city and its residents, it also introduced a massive new challenge: protecting a costly landscaped park from citizens—rich and poor, alike—who had no experience with the behavioral expectations required by a shared public space. “The kinds of things you could do in David E. Thacher your own back yard, or out in the wild woods—spitting, cutting flowers, grazing cattle, shouting at the top of your lungs—you just couldn’t do in a shared space like Central Park if it was going to serve the purpose New Yorkers had in mind when they decided to invest so much to create it,” says David E. Thacher , associate professor of public policy and urban planning. “When you have thousands and thousands of people using a space and bumping up against each other, you require a more rigorous set of rules.”
Top Photo: Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-95678
Order maintenance in the eyes of Olmsted
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Brian A. Jacob helps city schools become data driven
n an era of shrinking public education budgets, school districts cannot afford to make the wrong decision when they hire a teacher or cut a program. To make sure they reach the right answers, administrators are turning to Annenberg Professor Brian A. Jacob , whose data analysis has helped guide urban public school reforms across the country. “Districts really are becoming much more interested in data and analysis than they were 10 or even five years ago,” Jacob said. “Increased availability of electronic information has made a lot more analysis possible.” Jacob is actively adding to that wealth of analysis. With colleagues from Columbia University he’s developing more reliable ways of evaluating teaching candidates for Washington, DC’s public schools. “One solution [for cash-strapped districts] is to be better about hiring in the first place,” said Jacob, who is Brian A. Jacob conducting the project pro bono. “In order to do that you have to understand whether there is anything that can predict who will be an effective teacher.” Rather than relying on résumés, Jacob employed methods “that usually you wouldn’t use in a job interview,” including written essays, personality inventories, and classroom auditions, with candidates teaching a 30-minute lesson plan to current students. Performance reviews of the nearly 500 teachers hired under the trial selection system are now under way, with the goal of helping DC recalibrate its hiring process in the future. Jacob has seen the devastating setbacks of teacher malpractice. In 2011, more than 170 teachers and principals across 44 Atlanta public schools were accused of correcting students’ answers on standardized tests to meet performance benchmarks. In what is believed to be the largest investigation into teacher cheating, Jacob is serving as an expert witness, working with district officials and attorneys to determine whether student “erasure patterns” are sufficiently compelling to move forward with dismissal hearings or criminal charges. Many of the implicated staff have admitted wrongdoing and no longer work in the district.
“Every student is going to have an occasional answer erased and changed from wrong to right,” Jacob said. “But if you have a sufficiently large number of these cases, it starts to look suspicious.” Jacob’s ability to provide impartial feedback is an asset to groups like Excellent Schools Detroit (ESD), a publicprivate partnership to improve the city’s education system. Jacob has been advising the ESD on its efforts to collect and analyze student outcome and school performance data. With widespread skepticism of state and city officials amongst Detroiters, Jacob hopes the Ford School’s Education Policy Initiative—which he co-directs with Professor Susan M. Dynarski —can become a trusted source about school performance and student outcomes for parents and policymakers. “I think we have a pretty good reputation as honest academic brokers,” Jacob said. “We’re going to analyze the data and present what we find in a transparent way.” With widespread poverty, frequent turnover of administrators (by election and appointment), and thousands of teachers who must be receptive to reforms and faithful to their implementation, Detroit faces many of the challenges unique to urban districts. “How do you move an organization of that scale?” asks Jacob, who noted Chicago has 30,000 teachers citywide. “Implementing any reforms with consistency and fidelity is difficult.” Adding to the challenge is what Jacob calls “healthy tension” between districts and researchers. “District officials are often looking for answers very quickly about very specific program components,” said Jacob, who also mentors a group of fledgling policy analysts who are designing performance benchmarks for Philadelphia’s schools. “There’s often this pushback when I try to explain, ‘If we really want to answer the question, we can’t do it in three weeks.’” It appears Jacob and his protégés have no shortage of work ahead of them. ■
Focus on: Urban Policy
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
Improving urban health through the power of community
Ruth Browne (MPP/MPH ’83)
“Every community has assets—trusted mentors, business leaders, church leaders—the institute gives them the tools, resources, and support they need to leverage those assets so they can be more proactive about their health, the health of their families, and the health of their communities.” How does the institute battle these preventable diseases in communities with less reliable access to health care and greater exposure to stress and environmental hazards? To hear Browne tell it, the work is simple: it harnesses the power of community. “Every community has assets—trusted mentors, business leaders, church leaders—the institute gives them the tools, resources, and support they need to leverage those assets,” says Browne, “so they can be more proactive about their health, the health of their families, and the health of their communities.” Among the community leaders the institute trains are barbers and hair stylists. Hair stylists? Really? Absolutely, says Brown. “Most African American women have a traditional place for hair care, but not health care.”
The Arthur Ashe Institute trains barbers and stylists in more than 400 salons in Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, and Philadelphia to talk to their clients about heart disease risk factors. Stylists are taking blood pressure, encouraging clients to get cholesterol checks, sharing health information, and suggesting diet and behavioral changes that can lower risk. In 2011, in preand post-study surveys of test and control groups, participants in the three-month intervention reported a 60 percent increase in healthy behaviors such as dieting and exercise. In 1994, just two years after the institute’s founding, Browne helped launch another of its signature programs, an after-school enrichment program designed to inspire more minorities to enter health and science professions and return to their own communities to share their skills. To date, 99 percent of the institute’s graduates have gone on to college and 60 percent (ten times the national average) have entered bachelor’s programs in science and health fields. Interestingly, Browne’s own career has followed a similar trajectory. She grew up in Brooklyn; went away to college (to Princeton for her undergraduate degree, the University of Michigan for her master’s, and Harvard for her doctorate); then ran public health training programs in Jamaica, and social and health policy programs for Mayor Koch and Governor Cuomo in New York city and state. Browne then returned to run the Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health—just five blocks away from the Flatbush, Brooklyn, home where she grew up. ■
The institute trains community leaders—including hair stylists and barbers—to conduct health promotion programs throughout Brooklyn.
Photo: Yvonne Albinowski
uth Browne (MPP/MPH ’83) just did the happy dance. She’s celebrating a gift to the Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health, an institute she’s directed since its founding in 1992 by the legendary African American tennis star and humanitarian. This moment of unguarded delight is particularly endearing in Browne because her public persona is all polish and professionalism. It has to be. As CEO of an internationally recognized nonprofit leader in community-based health interventions, Browne knows how important the institute’s work is to economically disadvantaged communities of color and poverty, which suffer a disproportionate share of preventable illnesses like heart disease, asthma, and diabetes.
John R. Chamberlin: Making a life This Saturday, John Chamberlin will board a plane for Paris. He’s gearing up for new adventures in retirement. Over the past four decades, he’s taught more core courses than any other faculty member at the school, served as interim and associate dean, and helped launch the Ford School’s immensely successful undergraduate degree program. He’s also been an indispensable sounding board for faculty, staff, and students—a great listener, with irreplaceable institutional knowledge, wise advice, and the kind of long-view that has helped our school grow and mature in so many ways. | By Erin Spanier
ohn R. Chamberlin is our institutional memory. badly needed to develop its capacity for He was here during the Watergate scandal, better analysis if we were going to craft better and he was here when Gerald Ford assumed public policies.” the presidency. He was here when the institute became a school, and he was here when the “The problems facing local, state, and federal government agencies have become more and more school was renamed in Ford’s honor. He’s the complex and typically contain a variety of social, one who introduced countless numbers of policy political, scientific, and economic dimensions,” students to statistics and ethics, reminding them wrote Pat Crecine and the interdisciplinary to weigh society’s never-ending quest for effigroup tasked with establishing a new blueprint ciency against humanity’s deepest-held values. for the Institute of Public Administration (IPA). And for 43 years, he’s kept us asking the tough To contend with these thorny problems, Crecine, questions, like “What Makes Life Worth Living?” an associate professor of sociology and political science who would be hired to direct the newly If you’re looking for a history of the Ford School, or a history of the field of public policy in general, established Institute of Public Policy Studies, advised incorporating “the most recent advances John Chamberlin is the man to see. “I got here in the social and management sciences” into the in 1970, just a year after the Institute of Public public administration curriculum. Policy Studies (IPPS) opened its doors,” says Chamberlin. While the University had been offerCrecine hired Chamberlin the following year ing a graduate degree in public administration to teach one of the new core courses: statistics, since 1914, it overhauled the curriculum in 1969 which Chamberlin taught in one form or another to offer the first Master of Public Policy degree. for the next 30 years. “The new curriculum was And this wasn’t just the first public policy degree preparing students to use data and evidence, at the University of Michigan—it was the first and the power of quantitative analysis, to make public policy degree anywhere. better public policy,” says Chamberlin. “The Pentagon and the Office of Economic Opportunity “Today, more than 150 schools in America, and were leading the way in quantitative policy many others across the world, offer degrees in analysis in the ’60s, and demand was growing public policy, but it wasn’t obvious back then for people with these skills.” that public policy would succeed as a field,” says Chamberlin of the early years. “What was obvious In the late 1970s, Chamberlin added a course of was that problems like poverty, environmental his own to the public policy curriculum: values degradation, discrimination, and international and ethics in public policy. In 1971, Chamberlin conflict weren’t going away, and that government
John Chamberlin enjoys a laugh at his retirement celebration.
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Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
Chamberlin’s colleagues sent him off in fine Ford School style with dinner, tributes, and, of course, skits. At left, Super Carl Simon. At right, Jeff Mackie-Mason updates a classic, using Ned Gramlich’s textbook as an all-purpose kitchen device.
recalls coming across a copy of John Rawls’ A Theory of Justice in a Cambridge, MA, bookstore. “I was doing mathematical models of rational choice, and Rawls’ underlying argument involved rational choice, so I developed an interest that pointed my teaching and research in a new direction,” says Chamberlin. Fortunately for us, it was an interest he couldn’t shake. To Chamberlin, who developed political and policy commitments to justice in an era plagued by injustices (the Vietnam War, poverty, discrimination, and pollution), a course in ethics would add important balance to a policy curriculum then steeped in “quantoid stuff.” “Rawls’ book was a monumental work,” Chamberlin says. “He got justice back into a conversation that had largely been taken over by economics and the norm of efficiency.” What began as an elective in the late ’70s became a core course in the late ’90s, and Chamberlin’s prolonged interest in ethics led him to serve as founding director of the University’s Center for Ethics in Public Life in 2008.
On the wall of John Chamberlin’s office today hangs a T-shirt that reads, “_________ Makes Life Worth Living.” Above the line, Chamberlin has inked a single word: “JUSTICE.” “What Makes Life Worth Living?” is a question the Ethics Center posed to the entire University community during an LS&A theme semester in the fall of 2010. “The commitments and dispositions that students develop as undergraduates shape the trajectories of their adult lives,” wrote Chamberlin in the project description. “What Makes Life Worth Living?” seeks to call attention to the importance of not letting concern for making a living dominate concern for making a life.” In the long list of responses, one seems particularly apropos as we look back over Chamberlin’s contributions to the Ford School: “working to make the world a better place for all to live.” That’s just the kind of commitment that John Chamberlin brought to public policy, and the kind he inspired in so many of his students over the years. ■
Wear one, share one!
uly 14, 2013 will be the 100th anniversary of the birth of President Gerald R. Ford . We’ve been actively celebrating his remarkable life and legacy throughout the year, including a tribute to Mrs. Betty Ford, a visit from the president’s Energy Czar Frank Zarb, a special panel discussion of Black and Blue, and more. General Brent Scowcroft (ret'd) will visit the school in April to dedicate a small version of President Ford’s sculpture found in the National Statuary Hall. And former Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill will be our Ford Centennial commencement speaker.
Of course in many ways it’s all of you—our alumni, students, and friends—who are carrying on President Ford’s living and lasting legacy through your commitment to public service. You’re our very best ambassadors to the world. So please celebrate this centennial with us! Share the news about President Ford’s legacy by wearing one of our commemorative buttons with pride. Better yet, encourage someone else to wear one! We’ve just launched a contest using the buttons. We’re asking all of our students, alumni, and friends to comb through their contact lists and see which influential, or impressive—or maybe just plain famous!—policy figure you could ask to wear a Ford Centennial button.
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Inclusive America, under attack Ten years after the U.S. Supreme Court heard Grutter v. Bollinger, we look back at President Ford’s defense of affirmative action in higher education
his June marks the 10th anniversary of the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Grutter v. Bollinger, which upheld the use of affirmative action by the University of Michigan Law School.
President Ford played a critical role in helping his alma mater defend itself against two lawsuits that sought to end the ability of schools to consider race in admissions as a tool for building diverse educational settings.
In August 1999, the New York Times published a stirring letter from the former president, publicly and forcefully voicing his support for affirmative action. Then, from behind the scenes, Ford rallied support for the University’s position from top retired military officials including General H. Norman Schwarzkopf, Adm. William J. Crowe Jr., and two dozen others. The generals signed what legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin said “may have been the most influential amicus brief in the history of the Supreme Court.” Written by Carter G. Phillips, the brief stated that “the military cannot achieve an officer corps that is both highly qualified and racially diverse unless the service academies and the ROTC used limited race-conscious recruiting and admissions policies.”
Here is an excerpt from President Ford’s letter to the editor of the New York Times on August 8, 1999.
Inclusive America, Under Attack At its core, affirmative action should try to offset past injustices by fashioning a campus population more truly reflective of modern America and our hopes for the future. Unfortunately, a pair of lawsuits brought against my alma mater pose a threat to such diversity. Not content to oppose formal quotas, plaintiffs suing the University of Michigan would prohibit that and other universities from even considering race as one of many factors weighed by admission counselors. So drastic a ban would scuttle Michigan’s current system, one that takes into account nearly a dozen elements—race, economic standing, geographic origin, athletic and artistic achievement among them—to create the finest educational environment for all students. This eminently reasonable approach, as thoughtful as it is fair, has produced a student body with a significant minority component whose record of academic success is outstanding. Times of change are times of challenge. It is estimated that by 2030, 40 percent of all Americans will belong to various racial minorities. Already the global economy requires unprecedented grasp of diverse viewpoints and cultural traditions. I don’t want future college students to suffer the cultural and social
Get a picture, send it to the Ford School or pin it on Pinterest, and we’ll have an impartial team of faculty determine the winner. The prize will be impressive— we promise.
impoverishment that afflicted my generation. If history has
But most important you’ll have helped spread the word about our namesake president, about the tremendous pride we have in him, and about the outstanding school that bears his name.
the Willis Wards* were isolated and penalized for the color of
Visit us on the web for details: fordschool.umich. edu/fordlegacy/buttoncompetition
taught us anything in this remarkable century, it is the notion of America as a work in progress. Do we really want to risk turning back the clock to an era when their skin, their economic standing or national ancestry? To eliminate a constitutional affirmative action policy would mock the inclusive vision Carl Sandburg had in mind when he wrote: “The Republic is a dream. Nothing happens unless first a dream.” Lest we forget: America remains a nation with havenots as well as haves. Its government is obligated to provide for hope no less than for the common defense.
*Find the Spotlight on the inside back cover to see a photo from the screening of Black and Blue.
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
Fac ulty Feature
Comparing the advantages in international trade By Bob Brustman
n March 1990, Associate Dean Alan V. Deardorff shivered in a cold passenger jet on a runway in Alpena, MI. He was seated with his son and his son’s friend, in the midst of a plane full of people anxious to escape. They were all waiting for the signal that it was OK to slide down the inflatable emergency chute to the tarmac. Deardorff, professor of economics and public policy and the John W. Sweetland Professor of International Economics, lived to tell the tale. He says once was enough, though: “It was cold! We had to wait for a long time before we were told to go down the slide. And we were all in our stocking feet so that our shoes wouldn’t rip the slide! I don’t think I’d do it again! “My son might, though.”
For example, the United States produces lots of automotive parts. Country X produces apparel. We sell our car parts to country X because we have more than we need and we produce them at a low enough cost that we can sell for a profit. Country X is in a similar position vis-à-vis apparel. Alpena’s advantage in March 1990 was in comparison to Moses Lake, WA, where Die Hard 2’s airport scenes were originally going to be filmed. That year, Moses Lake had rain. Alpena had snow. There are always winners and losers in trade. “Free trade provides the stuff we want, goods and services, at low cost. The goods can be obtained more cheaply and therefore we can get more of them,” says Deardorff. “But no responsible economist would say that there aren’t losers.” According to the Alpena Chamber of Commerce in 1990, the Die Hard 2 production pumped $1 million into the local economy. That’s $1 million that didn’t go to the Moses Lake economy. Winner: Alpena. Loser: Moses Lake. The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), signed by the United States, Canada, and Mexico in 1994, provides an international example. Corn is a traditional mainstay of the Mexican diet. Before NAFTA, Mexico’s corn farmers struggled to meet the demand, often growing corn in small plots and in difficult-to-farm terrains.
Alan V. Deardorff debates AFL-CIO Deputy Chief of Staff Thea Lee in January on the “Pros and Cons of Free Trade.”
After NAFTA, U.S. corn, grown in the endless fields of the Midwest and planted and harvested by giant machines, was available at a lower cost to Mexico than their domestic corn. Corn prices dropped in Mexico, meaning that the relatively poor Mexican farmer had to lower the prices of the corn he raised and sold, or leave the land for the city.
It wasn’t a near-death experience. It was the filming of a sequence for the movie Die Hard 2: Die Harder. The Deardorffs were extras and their motivation was the younger Deardorff’s interest in movie making. The reason some scenes were filmed in Alpena might be described by trade economist Deardorff as the airport’s “comparative advantage”—snow and frigid temperatures.
International free trade, by itself, is beneficial, says Deardorff. “This doesn’t mean it won’t hurt someone. We argue that a trade policy is desirable if it benefits the winners so much that they could, in principle, compensate the losers and still be better off. In that sense, we recommend policies if they stand to increase the aggregate welfare of an economy.”
Deardorff and trade economists tend to believe that international free trade will sort itself out based on comparative advantage. Americans produce goods that we’re efficient at making, due to our natural resources, human resources, capital, knowledge, etc. Other countries will produce a different set of goods, and we’ll trade with one another.
But there are inevitable complications. The example of our corn trade with Mexico, for instance, is not as simple as it initially appears. The relatively low price of our corn is somewhat artificial, in that it depends on agriculture subsidies from the federal government.
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We argue that a trade policy is desirable if it benefits the winners so much that they could, in principle, compensate the losers and still be better off. Deardorff, who made an international name for himself early in his career by developing, with Robert M. Stern , a model to predict the effects of trade changes due to the Tokyo Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations in the 1970s, is not optimistic about a successful negotiation of the Doha Round. However, he says, the smaller, more local trade agreements like NAFTA, are thriving. “So many countries are negotiating free trade agreements with other countries—there are hundreds of them— that we’re moving in a direction where we may end up with every country having an agreement with every other country. That’s pretty close to the idea of multilateral free trade.”
Illustration: © 2013 Keith Negley, c/o theispot.com
These subsidies also relate to one of the obstacles preventing successful negotiation of the latest World Trade Organization’s (WTO) multilateral trade agreement. The WTO’s predecessor, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), has successfully negotiated eight sets of agreements since World War II. The agreements provide fundamental terms for trade among the 159 WTO-member countries. The Doha Development Round (so named because the meetings were initiated in Doha, Qatar) began in 2001 and was intended to focus on improving the trading prospects of developing countries. Among the issues that have resisted resolution is agricultural trade. Deardorff says that part of the problem is that developing countries are intimidated by our tremendous and government-subsidized agricultural productivity and fear how their domestic interests would compete with U.S. and European agriculture if trade barriers were reduced. And yet the United States and Europe are unwilling to eliminate their subsidies.
Recently, Deardorff has been examining one of the ways in which free trade agreements (FTAs) differ from global free trade. An FTA eliminates tariffs among the countries signing the agreement, however tariffs against other countries remain. “If countries participating in a free trade agreement have different tariffs, this is a problem,” says Deardorff. For example, the U.S. tariff on light trucks is normally 25 percent—a truck from Japan would be subject to this tariff, but because of our FTA, a truck from Mexico would not. If Mexico’s light-truck tariff is smaller than ours, what’s to stop canny traders from shipping Japanese trucks through Mexico to evade the U.S. tariff? The answer is something called Rules of Origin. These define where a product originates and stipulate the specific tariff policy. This is not a simple process as most products are constructed of parts from numerous countries. While the basics of an FTA may be brief, the agreements pertaining to Rules of Origin can be hundreds of pages in length. Deardorff has been examining these negotiated agreements to see how they interact with one another and what happens when countries are in overlapping trade agreements. ■
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
Zouheir Al Ghreiwati (BA ’14) looks toward the future of Syria A candlelight vigil on the Diag for those who have lost their lives in the conflict in Syria.
ouheir Al Ghreiwati ’s
(BA ’14) native land is
Hailing from Damascus, Syria, Al Ghreiwati lived in the now war-torn nation until his junior year of high school. Despite the mainstream media’s portrayal of Syria as a country divided by sectarian lines, Ghreiwati believes the civil war is driven not by religious hatred, but by the Syrian people’s desire for democracy. “What really saddens me is when the media turn it into a sectarian conflict with different religions fighting against each other,” Ghreiwati said. “The groups the U.S. government labeled as terrorists only make up a small part of what the actual revolution is.” Growing up in Damascus, it never mattered who was from one religious sector or another, according to Ghreiwati. He said his neighbors came from a variety of religious and ethnic backgrounds and there was never any sectarian hatred. While Ghreiwati believes that the current Syrian President Bashar al-Assad should step down, he doesn’t take issue with a minority ethnic group, such as Assad’s Alawite ruling class, governing Syria. He says as long as a “leader is doing what he is supposed to, it shouldn’t be a problem.” The Syrian Civil War has dragged on much longer than its sister uprisings in Libya, Egypt, and Tunisia, and has been far bloodier. Ghreiwati said the failure to find a resolution can be blamed on the international community, which has flip-flopped its support of both sides. “I think because the international community hasn’t said ‘this is what we want, this is what will happen,’ both sides keep getting weapons and they’re at a stalemate right now,” he said.
The city of Damascus
His support of the rebels, however, is also shaky. Their commitment to violence, according to Ghreiwati, has not brought them any closer to removing Assad. A political solution, like the removal of President Mubarak in Egypt, is more attractive to Ghreiwati. “I’m not behind a militarized solution,” he said. “The rebel forces do not speak under a unified force, there is no such thing as one Free Syrian Army—it’s a coalition of different militias and some of them are doing horrific things.” A number of his friends and their family members have been kidnapped over the past year, and it is unclear who is responsible—neither side wants to cast their cause in a bad light. The ransacking of homes, factories, and businesses is also common, according to Ghreiwati. Ultimately, Ghreiwati hopes to return to Syria after he gets his MBA and some work experience in the United States. He hopes to use the skills he’s learned at the Ford School to develop economic policies that would help rebuild his homeland. “I chose the Ford School because the program helps me see economic stimulation from the government perspective, but is also flexible enough to allow me to take classes in the economics, business, and urban planning departments for my focus area,” he said. “The mix of public and private sector focus classes helps build a well-rounded image of how to rebuild Syria.” Ghreiwati is an elected member of the Ford School’s Undergraduate Council and is part of an off-campus club called Jusoor, which aims to bring Syrian students to universities in Europe and North America. ■
Photo: Michigan Daily/Paul Sherman
BA P rof i l e
Fighting back Knowledge is power for combatting violence against women “Thanks to You!”: Vibeke Brask Thomsen (MPP/MA ’06) sends a message to defenders of women’s human rights during a Global Fund for Women initiative.
o far, there aren’t reliable statistics on domestic violence in Monaco,” says Vibeke Brask Thomsen (MPP/MA ’06), founder and director of GenderHopes. “It doesn’t mean they don’t exist, we just haven’t found them yet.” Finding accurate information—and using it to educate women, policymakers, and the public at large—is one of the central aims of this Monaco-based non-profit dedicated to combatting violence against women. GenderHopes is still new, run by Brask Thomsen on a volunteer basis from her home, where she manages both local and international projects. Her voice and manner are buoyant, despite the serious work she undertakes. Together with Femmes Leaders Mondiales Monaco, she’s preparing background research for a brochure to raise awareness about gender-based violence in Monaco—what the numbers are and where women can go for help. “The people we’ve met with so far—the police, the social workers, the hospital, the Red Cross—have had no problem acknowledging that, just like anywhere else, domestic violence does happen here,” she says. “And there is a good network of help for women in Monaco.” That is not true in all cases, however. One population in Monaco that concerns Brask Thomsen is immigrant women, for whom not speaking the language (French) or not having a support network might make them less likely to report violence and, as a consequence, more vulnerable. “We look at that as well—how we can address domestic violence from both a local and an international perspective.”
Ford School Spotlight Hail Yeah! Ford School students let alumni know that their contributions matter with the Student Day of Thanks on March 20. Students sent personal messages to alums and entered to win a Ford School Spirit Store giveaway.
One way is for GenderHopes to promote women’s political participation: Brask Thomsen hopes to establish a scholarship at the Ford School that would support students from developing countries and help them to become change agents in their home countries. Another way is to make citizens aware of how violence against women in the developing world may stem from an array of causes. In Eldoret, a small town in western Kenya, GenderHopes has helped a local NGO present a series of events, such as roundtables with community leaders, to raise awareness about gender-based violence and demystify its origins. Such violence, Brask Thomsen points out, may be tied to cultural norms (female circumcision, for example). Brask Thomsen’s own commitment to this work began with her growing interest in how war and conflicts impact women. While at the Ford School, working with such faculty as Susan E. Waltz , she studied security, disarmament, and energy security. After graduation, she moved to Brussells and worked as a program officer at the International Security Information Service (ISIS Europe), where her supervisor and mentor specialized in gender issues. Having grown up in both Monaco and France, in 2011 she returned to Monaco and founded GenderHopes. Brask Thomsen observes that, “Men might be out on the battleground, but how women are impacted in any type of conflict is very different. Women might be victims of rape or kidnapping, or they may not have access to reproductive care. It’s very interesting to look at conflict through a woman’s eyes.” ■
Faculty News & Awards In March, Robert Axelrod participated in a conference on complexity theory at Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University. He also presented his work on historical analogies in its Eminent Speakers Series. Rick Hess of Education Week included
In March, the Michigan Department of Community Health appointed Matthew M. Davis chief medical officer for the state of Michigan. His responsibilities will include providing leadership and expertise on public health and workforce issues and health policy development.
David K. Cohen , Susan M. Dynarski ,
John DiNardo and Jill Horwitz pub-
and Brian A. Jacob on a list of universitybased academics who made the greatest contribution to national discussions around education in 2012. The rankings are based on the overall public impact of academics on education debates as measured by published scholarship, commentary on developments in education, and public profile.
lished new research in Health Affairs, “Wellness Incentives in the Workplace: Cost Savings through Cost Shifting to Unhealthy Workers,” which questions the underlying assumptions of workplace wellness programs that seek savings by offering financial incentives to employees.
Dean Susan M. Collins was appointed to the board of directors of the Detroit Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. Detroit Branch directors contribute to monetary policy development and serve as a link between the Federal Reserve and the private sector. Collins was also invited to become a member of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). Founded in 1921, CFR is an independent, non-partisan membership organization whose ranks include the most prominent leaders in the foreign policy arena.
Susan M. Dynarski was named a nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution. Along with Brian A. Jacob she presented at Michigan State University on early findings from their project regarding the impacts of the Michigan Merit Curriculum, graduation, and college-going rates in Michigan. In 2012 and early 2013, Dynarski also presented Education Policy Initiative work with postdoctoral fellows Steven Hemelt and Daniel Kreisman at several academic conferences, including the Association of Education Finance and Policy (AEFP) and the Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness (SREE).
ichael Cohen, a professor emeritus of
public policy and of information, passed away on February 2, 2013 at the age of 67. Cohen was a foremost expert in organizational theory and a founding faculty member of the Ford School’s predecessor, the Institute of Public Policy Studies (IPPS), as well as the U-M’s School of Information. He retired from the University in August 2012. Along with Robert Axelrod (and within a year, Carl P. Simon ), Cohen was a founding member of a group known as BACH—a brilliant collective of researchers who shared an interest in adaptive systems. BACH eventually grew into the Center for the Study of Complex Systems.
In April, Elisabeth R. Gerber begins a three-year term as one of Washtenaw County’s two representatives to the new Southeast Michigan Regional Transit Authority Board (see article, p. 8) Gerber will also publish two articles in spring 2013: “Political Homophily and Collaboration in Regional Planning Networks,” with Adam Henry and Mark Lubell, in the American Journal of Political Science, and “Partisanship and Local Climate Policy” in Cityscape. In February, Rusty Hills published an op-ed in The Washington Times on how the Republican Party should respond to President Obama’s State of the Union address. Hills’ suggestions for increasing viewership of the GOP response include choosing a different date, inviting highprofile party members, and offering a proactive policy agenda. Also in February, Hills served as the convention chairman for the Michigan Republican Party’s state convention. Brian A. Jacob , Brian P. McCall , and Kevin Stange published a new paper with the National Bureau of Economic Research, “College as Country Club: Do Colleges Cater to Students’ Preferences for Consumption?” Their findings affirm the role of demand-side market pressure in encouraging college investment in consumption amenities.
Ambassador Melvyn Levitsky met with Students for a Sensible Drug Policy in January to discuss current national policy on medical marijuana and on the Colorado and Washington referendums. In March, Levitsky participated in a panel, “How Nations React to Situations of Violence in Other Countries” sponsored by students of the Michigan Journal of International Affairs. In March, Ann C. Lin wrote an op-ed for the Detroit Free Press suggesting that a provisional residency system for immigrants to the United States should be considered as part of the solution to the country’s immigration debate.
S T A T E & HILL
In January, Philip B.K. Potter and Michael Horowitz of the University of Pennsylvania published the article, “Allying to Kill: Terrorist Intergroup Cooperation and the Consequences for Lethality” in the Journal of Conflict Resolution. The article explores networks of violent non-state actors and how these connections bolster their deadly acts.
In June, Megan Tompkins-Stange will be a featured speaker at the Philanthropy Educators Symposium at Stanford University. Tompkins-Stange also received a $50,000 grant from the Once Upon a Time Foundation to support a new Ford School course, “Philanthropic Foundations in the Public Arena.” The new course will focus on the merits and processes of charitable giving. It will be offered in fall 2013 and open to all U-M undergraduates. Marina v.N. Whitman continues a
nation-wide and international book tour for her memoir, The Martian’s Daughter. Stops include Ann Arbor; Princeton, NJ; Washington, DC; New York; Pittsburgh; Chicago; the Computer Museum in Mountain View, CA; and Budapest, Hungary.
heldon H. Danziger has been appointed
the tenth president of the Russell Sage Foundation in New York. Russell Sage is the premier foundation devoted exclusively to social science research. In the formal announcement from Russell Sage Foundation, Robert E. Denham, the chairman of the board of trustees, said, “Professor Danziger’s appointment will continue the Russell Sage Foundation’s great tradition of distinguished and groundbreaking social science research that addresses important policy issues and contributes to improving the human condition.” Danziger will join the foundation on September 1, 2013.
The National Research Council appointed Barry Rabe to a steering committee that will examine risk management issues in shale gas development. The committee will produce a summary report on these issues, as well as questions and considerations for future analysis. John J.H. Schwarz was named chairman of the board of the Michigan History Foundation. The foundation raises private funds to preserve and interpret Michigan history and works closely with the Michigan Library and Historical Museum in Lansing.
Ford School Spotlight President and CEO of CARE Helene Gayle discusses current trends in international development aid, microfinance, and global health initiatives with faculty members Marina v.N. Whitman and Sharon Maccini as part of the 2013 Citigroup Foundation Lecture in March.
Class Notes Collier
Howard Spence (MPA/JD’ 77) was
elected as a Democrat to the Eaton County, MI, Board of Commissioners with a term effective January 2, 2013. Howard also was reappointed to represent the State Bar of Michigan as a member of the executive committee of the Institute of Continuing Legal Education at the University of Michigan. Howard continues with a part-time law practice focusing on administrative law, occupational licensing law, and employment relations law. During Howard’s long government career, he served as personnel administrator for the Michigan Department of Commerce for two years, deputy insurance commissioner in the Michigan Insurance Bureau for 15 years, and as an Administrative Law Judge for the State of Michigan for approximately 10 years. David Berson (MPP ’79) is the chief economist at Nationwide Insurance in Columbus, OH. While being in the heart of Buckeye country is “interesting,” he and
his wife Anne are enjoying Columbus—and it’s less than three hours from Ann Arbor. Dan Weiss (MPP ’80) was named one of
Morris LLP, where he served on the Partners Board and as co-vice chair of the global corporate group.
the “Top Lobbyists for 2012” by The Hill newspaper. He received similar awards from The Hill in 2011 and 2010. He is a senior fellow and director of climate strategy at the Center for American Progress.
Christopher Holben (MPP ’87) became the president of Runyon, Saltzman & Einhorn, Inc. (RS&E) on January 1, 2013. RS&E, founded in 1960, is a full-service communications firm headquartered in Sacramento, CA.
Mike McGee (MPP/JD ’82), a senior pub-
Anne Collier (MPP ’88) is the executive
lic finance principal with the Detroit law firm of Miller Canfield, leads the firm’s team in assisting the City of Detroit with its restructuring, with particular emphasis on collective bargaining contracts and restructuring OPEB liabilities. McGee previously was retained by Detroit’s mayor to negotiate the Financial Stability Agreement with the State of Michigan.
director of Arudia and is a catalyst for executives stepping into power. She spends her days coaching and delivering workshops to the most amazing clients. Her clients are up to big things and because she supports them, so is she.
Chicago corporate and securities attorney David J. Kaufman (MPP ’86) recently
joined Thompson Coburn as a partner. Previously, he was a partner at Duane
Ford School Spotlight
Dong Yeon Kim (MPP ’91, PhD ’93) was sworn in as minister of the Prime Minister’s Office, Republic of Korea. His major duties include coordination and management of state affairs. Prior to this recent appointment, Kim served as vice minister of the Ministry of Finance, as State Minister, and as head of the Budget Office in the Ministry. Other positions Kim has held during his career include senior secretary to the President for Finance and Economy, and project manager at the World Bank. Chip Hamm (MPP ’96) joined the
Louisville office of Miller Wells PLLC law firm as counsel. He is also developing restaurant concepts, including The Comfy Cow, an all-natural ice cream store. He recommends the Bourbon Ball, although his kids prefer the Cake Batter. In December 2012, Darby Miller Steiger (MPP/MA ’97) joined Westat,
a social science research firm based in Rockville, MD, as a senior survey methodologist. Darby spent 15 years as a senior methodologist at Gallup. She telecommutes from her home in Cleveland.
Policy Talks: Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke talks with Ford School Dean Susan M. Collins before a packed audience at Rackham Auditorium on January 14. The event was viewed online by at least 4,000 people and was covered in over 2,700 media stories. Our event hashtag was tweeted over 4,200 times.
Amber Arellano (MPP ’04) and her
Ari Sznajder (MPP/MBA ’08) was fea-
husband Paul became new parents in spring 2012. Their daughter’s name is Solana Marie.
tured in the New Global Citizen magazine for his work in Nigeria with the MBAs Without Borders program.
Bulbul Gupta (MPP ’04) is the head of market-based approaches for the Clinton Global Initiative in New York City, where she relocated last year with her husband and now two-year-old daughter, Maya.
Brandy Johnson (MPP ’09), executive
(MPP ’04) and wife Sarah Jepson (MPP ’04) are proud to announce the birth of their second daughter, Elin. They live in Sierra Madre, CA where Jeremy manages corporate responsibility programs for the Walt Disney Company and Sarah manages sustainability policy for the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transit Authority.
director of the Michigan College Access Network (MCAN), was awarded the 2013 Champion for Children Award by the Michigan Association of School Administrators. The award recognized her advocacy and dedication in helping more Michigan youth gain access to and attend college. MCAN focuses particular attention on expanding college access among low-income students, first-generation college-going students, and students of color. Jamie Martone (BA ’09) launched a clothing company, The Versatile Warrior, whose mantra is “semper vincit: always conquer.” The clothes are designed for the modern day warrior: a dynamic individual unrelenting and unwavering in the pursuit of his or her goals and who excels in all facets of life. Martone partnered with his brother in this adventure and they launched their e-commerce site, versatilewarrior.com last October. Diana Searl (BA ’09), is the director of
Since May 2012, Mark Wallace (MPP ’04) has been working every week in Chicago as project manager for River Point, an 850,000-square-foot office building on the Chicago River at Lake and Canal Streets. The project will include a 1.5 acre public park on the river. He continues to keep a residence in the Corktown neighborhood of Detroit, where he spends his weekends. Sara Margaret Gilbert (MPP ’08) married David Geissler on November 17, 2012 in Charlotte, NC. They recently bought a home in Springfield, NJ. Sara Margaret works in state regulatory affairs at Consolidated Edison in NYC.
program operations at the Broadmoor Development corporation, a small community development group in New Orleans, LA. She is happy to speak with anyone about community development, affordable housing, or disaster recovery. With colleagues, Sameer Soleja (MPA/ MBA ’10) founded Molecule, a Houstonbased energy trading software analytics company. Molecule recently graduated from the SURGE Accelerator program, raised $450K in seed funding, presented at SxSW Interactive in Austin, TX (it received second place in the pitch competition), and launched its first commercial product. Sameer sends a big thanks to all the Ford School professors and Fordies who have lent emotional support along the way.
Schmidt and Davis
Ian Margolis (BA ’11) recently quit his job in finance to take full-time computer programming classes in Chicago. Following the classes and a brief stint coding up his own business ideas, Ian moved to San Francisco to take on a project management/engineering position at Google, where he is continuing the age-old Ford School tradition of enjoying free food while performing exciting, meaningful work. Chris Mueller (MPP/MBA ’11) was recently promoted to principal at the Innovatrium, a social innovation consulting firm in Ann Arbor. Students interested in working with Chris or his clients, feel free to contact him at crmuelle@ umich.edu. Adam F. Schmidt (MPP ’11) and Ashlee Davis (MPP ’11) are happy to announce
their engagement. They met as graduate students at the Ford School in 2009 and will be married in Park City, UT, in the fall of 2013. Currently, Adam works in the international programs division of the Logistics Management Institute (LMI) and Ashley works for the U.S. Department of Education as a Presidential Management Fellow. Jennifer Williams (MPP ’11) returned
to the University of Michigan in fall 2012 to pursue a PhD in Urban and Regional Planning at the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning. Jonathan Moore (MPP ’12) was promoted from program analyst to special assistant to the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
As this edition of S&H went to print, Governor Snyder appointed an Emergency Manager (EM) to the state’s largest city. We asked CLOSUP’s Tom Ivacko (MPP ’93) for his thoughts on the EM Law, and on the future of Michigan’s cities and towns.
Tom Ivacko (MPP ’93)
Your thoughts about the controversial Emergency Manager Law?
But looking ahead, they fear revenue will not keep up with expenses even as the economy improves.
TI: The prime argument against it is that it’s undemocratic: once appointed, an EM can set aside all decision-making power of locally elected officials. Ultimately, however, local governments are creations of the state. They don’t exist except for what the state says they can do. And of course Governor Snyder is a statewide elected official, so there’s an argument to be made that it’s still a democratic process. One other concern, though, is that it doesn’t address more fundamental issues that will continue to hurt cities after an EM leaves.
Property tax is the most important source of funding and its growth is capped at inflation in Michigan. Meanwhile, health care costs continue to grow much faster than inflation. State revenue sharing has been cut repeatedly, and the sales tax doesn’t include most services, which is where most of the economic growth is in the state. So again even as the rebound continues, there’s no help for cities.
What will Detroit EM Kevyn Orr do?
He’ll most likely privatize a number of major services—the transportation and lighting systems, for example, which drain $100M annually from the city’s general fund. The city staff has already been downsized but he’s going to have to do something with labor contracts. TI:
Your Michigan Public Policy Survey takes the pulse of local officials. What do they think?
TI: Most local officials think that even after the recent period of major retrenchment, their funding system is fundamentally broken. They’ve been extraordinarily active in dealing with the state’s fiscal crisis. Many cities slashed their employment levels 30 percent or more, shifted health care costs to employees, shared services to cut costs, spent rainy day funds, and as a last resort, cut services.
Any historical parallels from when NYC appealed to President Ford and the federal government for help?
TI: New York played a role for the nation like Detroit plays for Michigan. My read is that when Ford initially said no to a bailout, it galvanized people in the city and around the nation to see how important it was that the city not fail. Local leaders made painful cuts and restructured debt. With that progress made, the federal government—at Ford’s urging—did provide short-term loans and other support. The domino effect is certainly on the minds of people here in Michigan now: we can’t have one of these major cities fail—certainly not Detroit. S&H:
What’s next for Michigan’s cities?
Our conversation must be: what future do we want? Do we want smaller and smaller governments and what that specifically means: that it takes longer for firefighters or police to show up with help, and that our streets have lots of potholes? If that’s not the future we want, we have to pony up.
In Michigan’s last two primary votes, according to unofficial tallies from the Center for Michigan, there were around 800 millage requests at the local level for things like police, fire, public transit, senior services, schools, libraries, parks— ultimately, quality of life issues. There was overwhelming support for these—about 90 percent of renewals passed, as did almost 70 percent of new tax requests. That’s remarkable! Local leaders think that their citizens would choose fewer services with lower taxes versus better services with higher taxes. But those millage outcomes say just the opposite. They suggest that at least at the local level, most people would say: ‘stop the bleeding.’ ■
Infamous (and technically inaccurate) Daily News headline following President Ford’s promise to veto a federal bailout of the city. Some believe the blunt headline cost Ford the 1976 presidential election, but most credit Ford’s tough stance with spurring New York leaders to real action to stabilize the city’s finances.
Headline image: New York Daily News
THE LAST WORD
Stop the bleeding
Ford School Spotlight Hard to say goodbye: At a luncheon in March, colleagues celebrated the career of Elena Delbanco , lecturer in expository writing and founder of our Writing Center, with a comedic mashup of some of her most famous holiday skits. Delbanco retired in December after 25 years at the Ford School.
Black and Blue: Steve Ford and Sen. Buzz Thomas pose with Dean Susan M. Collins , CLOSUP director Barry Rabe , and the filmmakers of Black and Blue: The Story of Gerald Ford, Willis Ward, and the 1934 Michigan-Georgia Tech Football Game. The screening and panel discussion were a part of the U-Mâ€™s MLK Day events in January and the official kick-off of our Ford Centennial celebration.
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
Joan and Sanford Weill Hall 735 S. State Street Ann Arbor, MI 48109-3091
FSC logo to be added by printer here
Printed on paper made from 100% post-consumer waste using biogas energy.
in person or online for these upcoming Ford School events:
To honor the 100th anniversary of President Ford’s birth, Paul H. O’Neill, a cabinet member in the Ford Administration, will deliver the Charge to the Class of 2013
Celebrate the 3rd annual Worldwide Ford School Spirit Day with alums from around the globe
Policy Talks @ the Ford School and Citigroup Foundation Lecture by former U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe (ME-R) This event will be live web-streamed
Save The Date
October 31 November 1, 2014 An alumni reunion 100 years in the making…You won’t want to miss the Ford School’s Centennial Reunion. More details to come. Visit: fordschool.umich. edu/fordlegacy
Visit fordschool.umich.edu/events for more details or fordschool.umich.edu/videos to watch videos from our past events. For the latest event news, sign up by emailing email@example.com or following @fordschool.
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