In Michigan Daily, Hills inspires students to ‘make a difference’ through public service

January 20, 2016

A January 7 Michigan Daily article, “’U’ classes help inspire careers in government,” highlights the involvement of recent U-M alumni in local government. The article identifies the skills and inspiration students have gained from U-M faculty and courses, including Rusty Hills' Ford School course, Elections and Campaigns.  

Zachary Ackerman, a recent alumnus, continues to find inspiration from his class with Hills. “There are some sound bites I still remember from Professor Hills,” Ackerman said, “Like be bold, which means knowing what you want and be willing to fight for it when it’s the right time. Also you can do as many things as you want, but you can only do one thing well. Which is an important perspective for a political leader.”

“One person can make a difference and that person can be a young person,” Hills told the Daily. “There’s no reason why a student at the University of Michigan can’t make a difference.”

Along with Ackerman, who was recently elected to the Ann Arbor City Council while still a student, Hills cites former State Representative Paul Scott as a further example of U-M alumni making a difference in local government.

--Story by Alex Berger

Rusty Hills is a lecturer in public policy at the Ford School. He is currently director of public affairs for Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette. Hills has spent the better part of two decades in public service and politics. He was twice elected unanimously to serve as chair of the Michigan Republican Party.