Briefly Noted

Political Scientist to Study New Zealand’s Female Prime Ministers

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (June 30, 2015) — Over the past four decades, the number of women holding national-level political office has steadily increased throughout the world. However, only one country has appointed two women to its top leadership post: New Zealand.

Next year, Louise Davidson-Schmich, associate professor of political science in the UM College of Arts & Sciences, will spend four months there, conducting research on how these two former Prime Ministers – Jenny Shipley, 1997-1999, and Helen Clark, 1999-2008 – represented New Zealand women during their terms, and the lasting effect of their tenures on female Kiwis.

Davidson-Schmich will be based at the Victoria University of Wellington, in New Zealand’s capital city, where she will have access to parliamentary transcripts and news archives, and will be able to meet with individuals who worked closely with these two dynamic but very different leaders.

Davidson-Schmich’s project was inspired by her ongoing research on gender and politics in Germany, and Chancellor Angela Merkel.

“I could not always determine whether Merkel’s policies were inspired by her gender or by some other factor,” Davidson-Schmich says, noting that Merkel grew up in communist East Germany, and was trained as a physicist.

So she set her sights on New Zealand, “a country which experienced two very different female leaders serving back-to-back terms.”

She explains, “If I could identify commonalities in the ways in which two very different women governed, I could better make claims that their gender played a role.”

Davidson-Schmich will travel to New Zealand in February 2016, and conduct her research there through July. She will also teach an undergraduate course on the comparative political economy of post-industrial democracies.

The Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program provides approximately 800 teaching and/or research grants to U.S. faculty and experienced professionals in a wide variety of academic and professional fields each year. Program participants design their own research projects aimed at enhancing their existing scholarly interests.

The fellowship will give Davidson-Schmich “a wonderful opportunity to expand my intellectual horizons beyond the European focus of my research to date,” she says. Her forthcoming book is about gender quotas in Germany, and she has edited a special issue of the journal German Politics focusing on Merkel’s Chancellorship.

Davidson-Schmich served as the Director of the Women’s and Gender Studies Program in the UM College of Arts & Sciences for the 2014-2015 academic year. She received her Ph.D. from Duke University.

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With Stellar Performances by Vendors, Police, and Parking, UM’s BankUnited Center Shines

BUCA week ago Saturday, the BankUnited Center held the last of 21 high school and non-UM college graduation ceremonies, wrapping up a breathtaking whirlwind of activity on campus that began with the confluence of two historic events. A live broadcast of the Billboard Latin Music Awards from the BUC and the renaming of the Student Activities Center for UM’s now-departed fifth president, Donna E. Shalala, brought thousands of visitors—and all of the parking, logistics, and traffic challenges that go with mass events—to campus on April 30.

Yet the Billboard broadcast, the Shalala celebration, and the myriad other events that followed over the next six weeks went off without a major hitch or complaint, prompting a note of heartfelt thanks from Lorenzo Muniz, general manager of the BankUnited Center.

“For the BankUnited Center to have thousands and thousands of individuals attending these events and not receive a single complaint is beyond outstanding!” Muniz wrote in singling out the GCA grounds and maintenance crews, the UM Police Department, and the Department of Parking and Transportation for special appreciation. “Our police have been wonderful and our parking superb!”

Larry Marbert, vice president for real estate and facilities, to whom Muniz sent his thanks, is in hearty agreement. “It was a great job, and I want to congratulate everyone for rising to the occasion,” Marbert said. “It does, however, underscore the need for further planning and coordination for the growing number of future events.”



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Professor Named to Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers

Special to UM News

Laura Guiliano

Laura Giuliano

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (June 2, 2015)—Laura Giuliano, an associate professor of economics in the School of Business Administration, has been appointed to the staff of President Barack Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers. Giuliano will serve one term as senior economist for labor and education beginning at the end of August.

The council, which consists of the chair and two senior members, offers the president expert economic advice on the formulation of both domestic and international economic policy. It bases its recommendations and analysis on economic research and empirical evidence, using the best data available to advise the president. The council is supported by up to 10 senior economists—each of whom works on different major areas of the economy.

Giuliano’s duties will include helping to prepare daily and monthly briefings for President Obama and council members and contributing to the annual Economic Report of the President. One regular task will be to help interpret the “jobs report” that is published each month by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

“As a senior economist for labor and education, I will provide economic analysis on a wide range of issues involving labor market policy, such as the minimum wage and overtime compensation, as well as issues related to anti-poverty programs, education, and work/family policy,” said Giuliano. “I will also work with other parts of the White House, the Department of Labor and the Department of Education.”

Giuliano has a Ph.D. in economics from the University of California—Berkeley, a master’s in international relations from Yale University, and bachelor’s in economics from the University of Virginia. She has been with the University of Miami  since 2004.




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Chamber Salutes ‘JC’ del Valle for His Leadership

UM News

Juan Carlos 'JC' del Valle

Juan Carlos ‘JC’ del Valle

MIAMI, Fla. (June 5, 2015) —Juan Carlos “JC” del Valle, the University’s assistant vice president of Government and Community Relations, was honored for his significant contributions to the community last week by the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce, which recognized him for his leadership in government at its annual Salute to Miami’s Leaders awards luncheon.

Bestowed on alumni of the chamber’s Leadership Miami program, the awards recognize “community stars” who “make Miami a stronger, more vibrant community,” something del Valle has been devoted to his entire career. The immediate past chair of Leadership Miami, which prepares the next generation of Miami leaders to meet future challenges, he remains active with the chamber, serving on its board, as well as the boards of CareerSource Florida, the American Diabetes Association, uAspire, Florida Covering Kids and Families, and the One Community One Goal Steering Committee.

At UM, where he earned his Bachelor’s in Business Administration, del Valle oversees all University activities related to local government. He is also responsible for the community relations of several programs and for identifying new funding opportunities for the University via different government and business sectors.

Before joining UM in February 2008, as director of government affairs, del Valle was an assistant to the county manager of Miami-Dade County, where he was responsible for several key infrastructure departments. He started in Miami-Dade County as a senior policy analyst for former Miami-Dade Mayor Alex Penelas, and then served as the assistant director of legislative affairs for former Mayor Carlos Alvarez.

Del Valle also holds a Master’s in Public Administration from Florida International University.

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UM Elects New Members to the Board of Trustees

UM News

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (June 2, 2015) – The University of Miami has elected Susan Lytle Lipton, A.B .’67, J.D. ’70, as an alumni trustee, and Daniela Lorenzo as the student trustee on its Board of Trustees. In addition, Angel Gallinal joined the University’s board as an ex officio trustee on June 1. The Board of Trustees is responsible for governing the University of Miami, one of the top private research universities in the United States.

A former investment banker, lawyer, and scholarship student at UM, Lipton is a community volunteer and president of the Lipton Foundation, a private foundation. She and her husband, attorney Martin Lipton, live in New York and are very involved in their alma maters.

Gallinal is a partner in the Miami office of Egon Zehnder, a leading global firm specializing in executive search and talent advisory services, and serves a wide variety of clients in consumer goods, hospitality, media and communications, and sports. A graduate of both Harvard College and Harvard Business School, he is an active member of the South Florida community, contributing to various organizations, including serving as the new president of UM’s Citizens Board. The Citizens Board is a select group of more than 265 business, professional, and civic leaders who actively support the University’s philanthropic efforts and promote its programs.

Lorenzo, the new student trustee, is a rising senior at UM, where she is majoring in political science, psychology, and religious studies, and is on a pre-law academic track. A Miami resident, Lorenzo serves as the vice president of the Federation of Cuban Students, known as FEC, and has been involved with Student Government as an executive at large, connecting various branches and committees of the organization through newsletters and programming.

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