School of Public Policy Welcomes New Spring 2017 Adjunct Faculty

January 4, 2017  | 3 min read

The Pepperdine School of Public Policy (SPP) will welcome three new adjunct faculty members for the Spring 2017 semester, which begins on Monday, January 9, 2017. Marlon Graf, Christian McGuigan, and former Senator Gloria Romero will teach Master of Public Policy elective courses in American politics, economics, and state and local policy specialization areas. Graf, assistant policy analyst at the RAND Corporation, will teach a course on practical applications of policy analysis; McGuigan, vice president of Integrated Content Strategy at Participant Media, will teach a course on media and social impact; and former California State Senator Romero, founder/executive director of Scholarship Prep Charter School, will teach a course on education, politics, and reform.

SPP will also welcome back Karen Elliott House, former publisher of The Wall Street Journal and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, to teach a course entitled, “Islam and a Mideast Crisis.” House previously served as the School’s Spring 2014 William E. Simon Distinguished Visiting Professor.

Graf is an assistant policy analyst at the RAND Corporation and has worked at the Los Angeles Mayor's Office of Economic and Business Policy, as well as in John Deere's marketing and sales branch in France. Previously, Graf served as a trainee in the staff of the Majority Leader in the European Parliament, advising mainly on transatlantic relations and the Euro-Crisis. At RAND, Graf has worked on a number of projects for the European Commission, such as an assessment of societal trends over the next 20 years, and has conducted a client-sponsored analysis for a global technology firm of upcoming challenges for cloud computing providers. In addition, he is involved in both the development of an alcohol abuse microsimulation platform as part of a joint team between RAND, the OECD and the WHO and of an agent-based model of income tax evasion perceptions in the United States, Italy, Greece, Denmark and Germany. Graf completed business undergraduate studies in Germany and France; received an MPP from the University of California, Los Angeles; and PhD in policy analysis from the Pardee RAND Graduate School.

McGuigan is currently vice president of Integrated Content Strategy at Participant Media, a leading media company dedicated to entertainment that inspires and compels social change. Participant's more than 70 films have grossed over $2 billion in theaters globally and collectively earned 50 Academy Award nominations and 11 wins, including 2016’s Best Picture. McGuigan began his career at Participant creating social impact campaigns and writing and producing award winning video content associated with each film with the goal of driving meaningful social change. He went on to help lead Participant Media's cause marketing services division, offering marketing and social innovation consulting to corporations and foundations. In his current position, McGuigan now sits at the intersection of content and strategy shepherding projects across Participant’s marketing, impact and digital divisions. Prior to joining Participant, McGuigan worked as an independent producer for film, television and commercials. McGuigan received a BA in English literature from the University of Dallas and a JD from Chapman University School of Law. He is a member of the Pacific Council on International Policy.

Romero, is a former California state senator and founder/executive director of Scholarship Prep Charter School located in Santa Ana, California. A TK-8th grade charter school, Scholarship Prep was established as a countywide-benefit charter school with a strategic focus on closing the achievement gap for high poverty and foster youth using project-based learning. Prior to establishing Scholarship Prep Charter School, Romero was elected to the 24th Senate District in 2001, representing East Los Angeles and the greater San Gabriel Valley. She was elected to serve as Senate Democratic Caucus Chair and as Senate Majority Leader—the first woman to ever hold that leadership position in the history of the California State Senate. Prior to serving in the Senate, she held the post of Majority Whip in the California State Assembly and served on the Los Angeles Community College Board of Trustees and the Los Angeles Elected Charter Reform Commission. Romero also served on a number of Senate committees and subcommittees, making her one of the most influential voices on education policy in California.  She authored the imaginative and revolutionary Parent Open Empowerment Act, which transfers real rights to parents of children in chronically underperforming and failing schools—the first such law in the nation. Romero received a BA and an MA from California State University, Long Beach, and a PhD in psychology from the University of California, Riverside.