Election Night Virtual Watch Party
On Tuesday, November 3, 2020, the Tulane School of Professional Advancement program in Public Administration hosted a diverse group of experts for live commentary, analysis and conversation as, together, we experienced a momentous election.
Dean Suri Duitch and Dr. Halima Leak-Francis moderated the evening, while elected officials, business leaders, political consultants, professors, analysts, and other community leaders answered questions and offered real-time insights into election results.
Read panelist Stephen Sigmund’s opinion of the results here.
Jeff Asher, Co-Founder, AH Datalytics, LLC, and Adjunct Instructor in Homeland Security Studies, Tulane School of Professional Advancement
Asher consults on data analytics projects throughout the U.S. through his firm, AH Datalytics. His data-focused articles on civic issues regularly appear in the New Orleans Advocate/Times-Picayune.
Sharon Courtney, Vice President for Government Relations, Tulane University
Courtney is a veteran government relations expert. She also serves as a board member for New Orleans-based nonprofits ReNEW Schools, New Orleans Greenmarkets, and The Data Center.
Flozell Daniels, President and CEO of Foundation for Louisiana
Daniels is a public policy and community engagement strategist with expertise in community development, resilience building, legislative strategy, and leadership development. His many avenues of public service include roles as a board member of the Urban League of New Orleans, a commissioner of the New Orleans Regional Transit Authority, board chairman of the Orleans Public Education Network, and member of the Louisiana Public Defender Board.
Ashleigh Gardere, Senior Advisor to the President/CEO & Director of the All-In Cities Initiative, PolicyLink
As Senior Advisor to the President and CEO and Director of the All-In Cities initiative, Gardere expands place-based partnerships, shares liberating innovations, and works in transformative solidarity with local leaders to achieve policy wins. Formerly, Ashleigh served as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at the New Orleans Business Alliance, the city’s economic development agency. She previously led a citywide Economic Opportunity Strategy as a Senior Advisor to former mayor Mitch Landrieu. Ashleigh has been recognized by Living Cities as one of the nation’s “Top 25 Disruptive Leaders” working to close racial opportunity gaps. She is an expert in economic and workforce development, organizational leadership and culture change, and large-scale systems transformation.
After 28 years as a microbiologist on the faculty of Alcorn State University, Darryl Grennell served as mayor of Natchez, MS, from 2016-2020. He was also a member and president of the Adams County, MS board of supervisors. Today, he teaches chemistry at Lusher High School in New Orleans.
Michael Hecht, President and CEO, Greater New Orleans, Inc.
As leader of the economic development agency for southeast Lousiana, Hecht has extensive experience in business development. He previously headed the State of Louisiana’s Katrina Small Business Recovery Program and the City of New York’s post-9/11 small business program.
Neil Kleiman, Professor, New York University and Adjunct Professor, Tulane University
Dr. Kleiman is on faculty at the Wagner School of Public Service and the Center for Urban Science Progress at NYU. He directs the Wagner Innovation Labs, through which he advises mayors, their staffs and state officials throughout the U.S.
J. Celeste Lay, Associate Professor of Political Science, Tulane University
Dr. Lay’s research examines political behavior, including political socialization, public opinion, and voting behavior. She also serves as the Senior Associate Dean of Academic Affairs in Newcomb-Tulane College
Adrian Perkins, Mayor, City of Shreveport and candidate for U.S. Senate
Mayor Perkins is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and graduated from Harvard Law School as a Tillman Scholar, where he was also elected student body president. He is running for U.S. Senate against incumbent Bill Cassidy.
Bill Rials, Professor of Practice in Information Technology, Tulane School of Professional Advancement
Dr. Rials, an expert in information technology and cybersecurity, has a particular focus on government technology systems at the local, state and federal levels. A veteran of the Mississippi National Guard, he also served in various technology management roles in local and state governments.
Stephen Sigmund, Senior Advisor, Global Strategy Group
Sigmund has spent over 20 years as an adviser, executive, and spokesperson for leading corporations, politicians, foundations, and nonprofits in New York, New Jersey, and the nation. He is the founding Executive Director of Global Gateway Alliance, a coalition of business, government, labor, and academia dedicated to improving the largest airport system in the country and its related infrastructure.
Kerry Stockwell, Senior Advisor to Tulane University President Michael Fitts
Prior to joining Tulane, Stockwell worked in a range of roles for former Senator David Vitter’s campaign, the National Republican Senatorial Committee, and for John Boehner, Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives.