Roll Call‘s Shira Center Begins Harvard Fellowship Today

Roll Call

Roll Call politics editor Shira T. Center has been named one of the Harvard Institute of Politics’ Resident Fellows. As such, she will be away for three months in Cambridge to teach study groups on Gender, Politics, and the Media. While she’s away, Center will continue to work part time for Roll Call, mostly in the mornings. Political reporter Kyle Trygstad will also be filling in as an interim politics editor.

“I was introduced to the idea of doing this a year ago when my boss, Christina Bellantoni, was a fellow in 2011.” Center told us. “Then a year ago, (former deputy chief of staff for Eric Cantor) John Murray invited me up to speak during one of his study groups. I was really impressed by the program and by the people there.”

Shira’s study groups will be not for credit and open to anyone in the Harvard community, including graduate and undergrad students. She plans on having some special guest speakers, though she couldn’t tell us who exactly.

“I will say that I plan to have a variety of fellow journalists, some political operatives and an elected official or two.”

As far as what topics she plans to cover, Center gave us a sneak preview of one of her lectures entitled “The Science and Art of Recruitment,” focusing on how parties and campaign committees recruit candidates.

“I don’t want to over-generalize, but there has been lots of research done -by Jennifer Lawless at American University in particular -that suggests that female candidates require a bit more convincing and active recruiting to run for office. But it makes sense for the parties to invest energy into that, because often women make better candidates.”

Shira and her husband are moving to Massachusetts today, and both are very excited about taking advantage of everything the city has to offer. They’ve even been working on a “Boston Bucket List” for the past few months.

Congratulations Shira from us here at FishbowlDC, and good luck on the fellowship!


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