Friends of CEPL: R-Z


Dr. Dave Robertson is the Curators’ Teaching Professor and Chairperson of the Political Science Department at the University of Missouri – St. Louis. His interests include national politics and policy, political history, political economy, labor, and environmental policy.  He has published articles on federalism and public policy, program design, lesson-drawing, the new institutionalism, James Madison, and labor market policies in the United States and Great Britain.

He is the recipient of the 2006 Mary Parker Follett Award for the Best Article in Politics and History. He is Associate Editor of the Journal of Policy History and formerly edited CLIO, the newsletter of the Politics and History section of the American Political Science Association. He is a co-leader of Confluence Scholars’ Strategy Network.  Dave has received the Governor’s, Chancellor’s, and Emerson Electric Awards for Teaching Excellence. He is the political analyst for KSDK Television (NBC) and is frequently quoted in electronic and print media.
Twitter: @daverobertsonMO

Jeffery Robichaud currently serves as the Deputy Director of the Water, Wetlands and Pesticides Division of EPA Region 7 in Kansas City. Previously with the EPA, he has served as Acting Director and Deputy Director of the Environmental Science and Technology Division, the Senior Policy Advisor to the Regional Administrator in Kansas City, and as an Environmental Engineer with the Office of Groundwater and Drinking Water in Washington, DC.
Twitter: @jrobichaud

Jason Rosenbaum is a reporter for St. Louis Public Radio, covering politics, policy, and everything in between. A graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism he has covered the Missouri General Assembly for the Columbia Daily Tribune, as well as publishing work in Missouri Lawyers Media, the Columbia Business Times and the St. Louis Business Journal. He has covered elections from the local level to the presidential contest in 2008. Maintaining a prodigious digital presence Mr. Rosenbaum is part of KWMU’s weekly “Politically Speaking” podcast along with Joe Mannies and Chris McDaniel.
Twitter: @jrosenbaum

Tony Rothert is the legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Missouri, where he oversees the legal program’s advocacy and litigation efforts. Tony has also served as Staff Attorney for the Legal Advocacy Service of the Illinois Guardianship and Advocacy Commission, as an Assistant State’s Attorney in Madison County, Illinois., and for the Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation. In 2015, Tony was named Lawyer of the Year by Missouri Lawyers Weekly in recognition of his work on marriage equality, civil liberties issues during and after civil unrest in Ferguson, and transparency surrounding the death penalty. He holds a J.D and M.S.W. from Saint Louis University.


Twitter: @aclu_mo

Dion Sankar is an assistant prosecuting attorney for the Jackson County Prosecutor’s Office. Prior to joining the Jackson County Prosecutor’s Office, Mr. Sankar worked in the litigation division of the Missouri Attorney General’s Office where he defended civil claims filed against various state and governmental entities and the Kansas City Missouri Police Department. He also worked as an associate at the McCallister Law Firm, P.C. where he represented individuals in various civil claims, including claims of police misconduct. After working as an associate for Weisman & Calderon LLP in New York for several years, he moved to Kansas City, Missouri, in 2011, where he currently resides with his family. He holds a J.D. from Hofstra University School of Law

Marjorie Sarbaugh-Thompson is a Professor of Political Science at Wayne State University and is the primary author of The Political and Institutional Effects of Term Limits (Palgrave, 2004). She is the principal investigator of a 13-year research project studying the effects of term limits on the Michigan legislature. This project has produced articles in publications such as State Politics and Policy Quarterly and Legislative Studies Quarterly, as well as numerous conference papers. She regularly speaks to government and civic groups and has been interviewed on radio and television on the subject. Her other work includes a chapter in Morality Politics in American Cities (Sharpe) and a benefit-cost analysis of the effect of childhood lead exposure.

Jeremy Scahill is the National Security Correspondent for The Nation magazine and is a Puffin Foundation Writing Fellow at The Nation Institute. He is author of the New York Times bestseller Blackwater: The Rise of the World’s Most Powerful Mercenary Army (Nation Books, 2007), as well as Dirty Wars: The World Is a Battlefield. Mr. Scahill’s work has sparked several Congressional investigations and won some of journalism’s highest honors. He was twice awarded the prestigious George Polk Award, in 1998 for foreign reporting and in 2008 for his book Blackwater. Mr. Scahill has reported from Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia, Nigeria, Yemen, the former Yugoslavia and elsewhere across the globe. Scahill is a frequent guest on a wide array of programs, appearing regularly on The Rachel Maddow Show, Real Time with Bill Maher, and Democracy Now!. He has also appeared on ABC World News, CBS Evening News, NBC Nightly News, BBC, al Jazeera, CNN, The NewsHour, and Bill Moyers Journal.
Twitter: @jeremyscahill

Former U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe served as a U.S. Senator for Maine from 1995 to 2013 and as a Representative in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1979 to 1995. Senator Snowe gained a reputation as one of the Congress’ leading moderates by focusing her attention on efforts to build bipartisan consensus on key issues. In 1999, she was cited by Congressional Quarterly for her centrist leadership, and was co-chair of a bipartisan, consensus building group in the Senate called the Common Ground Coalition, a forum for communication and cooperation between Senate Democrats and Republicans. Senator Snowe is only the fourth woman in history to be elected to both houses of Congress and the first woman in American history to serve in both houses of a state legislature and both houses of Congress. When first elected to Congress in 1978 at the age of 31, Senator Snowe was the youngest Republican woman, and the first Greek-American woman, ever elected to Congress.
Twitter: @SenatorSnowe
Organization’s Twitter: @OlympiasList

Natalie Jomini Stroud is an Associate Professor of Communication Studies and Assistant Director of the Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Life at the University of Texas at Austin. She is interested in how the media affect our political behaviors and attitudes and how our political behaviors and attitudes affect our media use. Her recent book, Niche News: The Politics of News Choice (Oxford University Press, 2011) explores the causes, consequences, and prevalence of partisan selective exposure, the preference for like-minded political information. Niche News received the International Communication Association’s 2012 Outstanding Book Award. Stroud directs the grant-funded Engaging News Project, which examines commercially-viable and democratically-beneficial ways of improving online news coverage.
Twitter: @TaliaStroud

Shira Truitt is the manager and General Partner of The Truitt Law Firm where she specializes in education law, estate planning, business law, family law, and public housing. Truitt was recently elected as Vice President of Mound City Bar Association, one of the oldest black bar associations west of the Mississippi River, having previously served as elections chair, constitution and bylaws chair, and historian. She also practices in the area of public finance, assisting clients by serving as counsel on bonds related to public financing of public/private ventures between entities and municipalities, cities and states. Truitt holds a J.D. and M.S.W. from Washington University in St. Louis.


Karen Ullery Williams is a senior legal analyst with the Kansas City, Missouri Board of Police Commissioners’ Office of Community Complaints (the oldest continually operating police oversight agency) and is the coordinator of the Office of Community Complaints’ Advisory Council. Prior to her current position with the Board of Police Commissioners, she was employed by Shook, Hardy, and Bacon L.L.P., in Kansas City, Missouri as a Products Liability Analyst. Ms. Williams has a B.A. from Cornell College in both Political Science and History and an M.P.A. from Park University. Ms. Williams currently serves on the National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement (NACOLE) Board of Directors in the position of local conference coordinator and newsletter committee chair.

Greg Upchurch has been practicing intellectual property litigator for over 30 years and served as the chairman of Missourians for Limited Terms, the primary organization behind the passage of term limits in 1992. He is also past chair of the Legal Education Committee and the Editorial Board of the Missouri Bar as well as having been appointed by Governor Blunt to the Missouri Coordinating Board for Higher Education where he currently serves as vice-chair. Upchurch is an adjunct Professor at Washington University Law School and the author of a three-volume work on intellectual property litigation as well as the founder of LegalMetric, a source of legal tools and expertise for intellectual property litigators.

Dr. David Valentine was Associate Director for Public Service at the Truman School of Public Affairs. He was a Research Associate Professor at the School since 2002, where he directed the Legislative Academy, supervised the applied research conducted by the Institute of Public Policy, provided training for non-profit organizations and government officials, and conducted applied research. He had contracts with several state agencies, including the Secretary of State, the State Courts Administrator, and the Department of Public Safety. Dr. Valentine worked for almost 25 years in the Missouri Senate Division of Research, including 16 years as the Director. He also served on the Governor’s Commission on Management and Productivity, a mid-90’s public-private initiative to improve operations and management practices in state government.
Remembering David Valentine

Christina Wells is the Enoch H. Crowder Professor of Law at the University of Missouri School of Law where she teaches Freedom of Speech, Remedies, Administrative Law and Gender & the Law. Professor Wells received the Shook, Hardy & Bacon Research award for her article on the constitutionality of statutes regulating funeral protests. She also received that award in 2005 for her articles on the effects of fear and risk assessment on decision-making in times of crisis. In 2008, she received the Husch Blackwell Sanders Distinguished Faculty Award for excellence in teaching. In 2003 and again in 2007, Professor Wells received the Sustained Outstanding Achievement Award for her work at the law school.

Phyllis Young is the long-serving recently retired alderwoman for the 7th Ward of the City of St. Louis A former teacher in the Special School District of St. Louis County, she moved to the city’s Soulard neighborhood in 1978 and was encouraged to run for an open spot on the board of Alderman. She has worked to improve property values, bring down the number of vacant buildings, and increase job opportunities for her residents.