Director’s Report: Dr. Ralph A. Rossum

The following article is from our Fall, 2007 newsletter:

One of the principal reasons the Rose Institute has been so successful in educating our students in critical thinking skills, problem solving, presentation abilities, and the fundamentals of public policy is that we land major grants and contracts from real-life clients who expect that the research findings we provide them (with major involvement from our students) will help them address real-world problems. We land (and subsequently provide the deliverables for) most of these grants and contracts because of three consultants who serve as Senior Fellows and Fellows of the Institute. These remarkable individuals include Steven Frates ’69 (MPA, Ph.D., USC), a Senior Fellow directing our work in the area of fiscal and economic impact analysis; G. David Huntoon ’65 (MBA, USC), a Fellow directing our work in the areas of survey research and legal and regulatory analysis; and Douglas Mark Johnson ’92 (MBA, UCLA and Ph.D. candidate, CGU), a Fellow directing our work in the areas of redistricting and demographic analysis.

Douglas M. Johnson, Consulting FellowAs you will note, all three of these consultants are CMC alumni; all three are “CMC to the bone” and are committed to providing our Rose Institute students with the same remarkable educational experience they received when they were CMC students. In this edition of the Rose Report, I want to focus on the major recent contributions of Doug Johnson; he was a student employee of the Rose Institute for all four of his years as a CMC undergraduate, and he served as student manager of the Institute during his senior year.

Upon graduation from CMC, Doug was selected as a Coro Foundation Fellow in Public Affairs, after which he served in Washington, D.C., as Legislative Director and Systems Manager for U.S. Congressman Stephen Horn. He later earned his MBA at the Anderson Graduate School of Management at UCLA, whereupon he returned to CMC and the Rose Institute as one of our consulting fellows. Since returning, he has worked, hand-in-glove, with our student research assistants, on a wide variety of projects. They include:

• managing two statewide Rose Institute surveys of California voter opinions on redistricting;
• managing “Competitive Districts in California” – a case study of California’s 1991 redistricting released in 2005;
• managing “Restoring the Competitive Edge: California’s Need for Redistricting Reform and the Likely Impact of Proposition 77” – a report released in September 2005 and cited or quoted in virtually every major newspaper in California.
• launching our “Frequently Asked Questions and Answers on Proposition 77” website in 2005;
• managing the production of our “Most-Gerrymandered Districts” library, now available on the Rose Institute website;
• testifying before multiple state Assembly, state Senate, and state Joint Legislative hearings on redistricting;
• managing our 2004 research on the results, bias, and gerrymanders in districts drawn nationwide in the 2001 round of redistricting;
• assisting in the preparation of reports for our 2004-2005 conference series on “Governing California in the 21st Century,” including preparing our Model Redistricting Reform Bill; reviewing and suggesting edits to redistricting reform letters and bills for various state senators and various political organizations.
• advising the staff of Governor Schwarzenegger on redistricting reform and appearing with the Governor at a press conference on the issue in 2006;
• being interviewed by scores of newspaper and radio and television media outlets, including “Special Report with Brit Hume” on Fox News Channel and on a local TV news broadcast in San Francisco;
• writing op-ed pieces, including one in the Fresno Bee and three in the Los Angeles Times;
• serving as a redistricting panelist at a regional Common Cause forum in San Diego, at national redistricting conferences in Utah and Texas, and on a Voices of Reform editorial board Q&A session and on a Voices of Reform redistricting panel in Sacramento.

Additionally, he provides continuous training to our Rose Institute students on basic and advanced Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and on the basic and advanced uses of Excel – all the while providing advice, mentoring, and other training to our students.

Doug Johnson is also involved in other activities that bring acclaim to the Rose Institute: he has been a government relations/public outreach/survey consultant to the Los Angeles County Fair Association/Fairplex – continuing the Rose Institute’s long history of involvement in Pomona civic life; has served as an expert consultant to the city of Modesto during its 2007 charter review project analyzing its city council election systems; and served as a redistricting consultant to numerous city, school district, and special district jurisdictions across California, Nevada and Arizona. Especially noteworthy, he served as redistricting consultant to Arizona’s Independent Redistricting Commission and the Florida State Senate (both after the 2000 census).

We at the Rose Institute are very fortunate to have such a talented and committed CMC alumnus giving so much of his talents and time to us – and to our students.

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