New Ford School faculty add depth in key areas

August 25, 2021

This fall, the Ford School welcomes several new faculty with expertise in education and social policy, national security, and racial justice, and who will help build students’ leadership and negotiation skills. In addition, visiting faculty with significant policy and leadership experience will be on campus to teach and mentor students.

Organizational psychologist Morela Hernandez joins the Ford School as a professor of public policy while also holding a courtesy appointment at the Ross School of Business. She will serve as faculty director for the Ford School’s Leadership Initiative, bringing her extensive expertise on the intersection of leadership and diversity and in applying behavioral science to design and improve organizational systems and decision-making practices. She recently joined Dean Michael S. Barr for a policy talk about cultivating leadership as a teachable skill. She also has extensive experience in consulting and development with government agencies, social profit organizations, and global companies. She has published work in the Academy of Management Review, the Journal of Applied Psychology, and more.

Katherine Michelmore, now an assistant professor of public policy at the Ford School, previously worked with Susan Dynarski and Brian Jacob as an Institute of Education Sciences postdoctoral fellow from 2014-2016 and completed her PhD in policy analysis and management at Cornell University. Her research focuses on inequality in education, the social safety net, labor economics, family policy, and social demography. Michelmore was a part of the team that created and evaluated U-M’s groundbreaking HAIL scholarship, which boosted application rates for low-income students. She is also an expert on the impact of the Earned Income Tax Credit on single mothers and children. This fall, Michelmore will be teaching an undergraduate policy seminar, “Social Welfare Policy.

After two years as a Towsley Foundation Policymaker in Residence, Javed Ali will be returning to the Ford School as an associate professor of practice. This fall, Ali will be teaching his popular “Cybersecurity for Future Leaders,” and a new course on “Domestic Violent Extremism: Policies, Threats, and New Approaches.” Both courses are open to undergraduate and graduate students. Ali brings more than 20 years of experience in national security and intelligence to the Ford School, holding positions at the Defense Intelligence Agency, the Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the National Intelligence Council, the National Counterterrorism Center, and the National Security Council. Ali regularly appears in the media, including MSNBC, ABC, and The New York Times.

Attia Qureshi will be joining the Ford School and the Ross School of Business as a lecturer. Qureshi is an organizational culture consultant who helps organizations move past dysfunction and build a united, collaborative and inclusive culture. She is an author of an upcoming book on negotiation skills, previously lectured at MIT, and has ongoing conflict-resolution work in Colombia’s cocaine-growing region. At the Ford School, Qureshi will work with Hernandez on the Ford School’s Leadership Initiative and teach PubPol 583, “Negotiation basics in public policy.”

Dominique Adams-Santos is a National Center for Institutional Diversity (NCID) postdoctoral fellow whose research centers around sexuality, intimacy, and belonging in the digital era and the racial, gendered, and sexual politics surrounding it. Adams-Santos will be teaching “Topics: Racial Foundations of Public Policy” for undergraduate and graduate students with Celeste Watkins-Hayes, and will serve as the inaugural associate director of the Center for Racial Justice.

Visiting policymakers

Each year, the Ford School welcomes a number of visiting professors that enrich the breadth of course offerings and connect our students to new policymaking communities. These policy leaders teach and mentor students, providing real-world advice and experiences.

Dr. Abdul El-Sayed is a public servant, Michigan politician, former professor, and a medical doctor. He will join the Ford School faculty as a Towsley Foundation Policymaker in Residence in the fall. El-Sayed has an impressive resumé: he was the executive director of the Detroit Health Department, a Health Officer for the city of Detroit, a Michigan gubernatorial candidate in 2018, and a founder of Southpaw Michigan, a political action committee that helps to elect progressive candidates in Michigan. He will teach PubPol 750.007, “Topics: Policy, Politics, & Public Health.

Hardy Vieux (MPP/JD ‘97) is returning to the Ford School for another year as a Towsley Foundation Policymaker in Residence. Vieux has extensive experience in human rights. He is currently the Chief of staff for Kids In Need of Defense (KIND), was formerly the vice president of legal for Human Rights First, and was a policy fellow with Save the Children in Jordan, all organizations that revolve around international human rights and refugees. He will be teaching PubPol 475/750.001, “Topics: The Role of Courts in International Human Rights” for undergraduate and graduate students.

Retired Ambassador Daniel Shields will be an asset to the Weiser Diplomacy Center this year as a visiting policy practitioner. Shields served as the U.S. Ambassador to Brunei for 3 years and has held many other positions within the State Department. His work has focused around Asian relations and issues, which he has taught many courses on. In the fall, he will teach PubPol 750.002, “Topics: U.S. Diplomacy in the Indo-Pacific.

Carol Giacomo will also be joining the Weiser Diplomacy Center as a visiting policy practitioner. Formerly, Giacomo was a diplomatic correspondent for Reuters in Washington, a role in which she covered foreign policy for the international wire service. She traveled over 1 million miles with eight secretaries of state and other U.S. officials, giving her a front row seat to U.S. diplomacy. She will be teaching PubPol 475.002,“Topics: Writing Persuasively About International Relations” for undergraduate and graduate students.

Shannon Farrell brings more than 18 years of experience to serve as the University of Michigan’s Diplomat in Residence. She has had tours in Afghanistan, Argentina, Ethiopia, Germany, Ireland and Turkey. Farrell was on one of the first consular teams sent to Haiti after the 2010 earthquake. Farrell will be housed at the Ford School and provide guidance and advice to U-M students who are interested in a career with the U.S. Foreign and Civil Services.


Welcome, faculty!