John Lapinski to be named the Robert A. Fox Leadership Professor of Political Science

Professor of Political Science John Lapinski will be named the Robert A. Fox Leadership Professor of Political Science and the director of the Robert A. Fox Leadership Program effective July 1, 2018. A renowned expert on national elections, survey research, and Congress, Lapinski is also Director of the Elections Unit at NBC News and analyzes and produces election-related stories through exit polls for NBC News, MSNBC, CNBC, Telemundo, and all of NBC’s digital properties. In addition, he is the founding faculty director of Penn’s Program for Opinion Research and Election Studies (PORES), which trains undergraduates in public policy, elections research and data analytics, and currently serves as the associate faculty director of the Fox Program and the faculty director of the Fels Executive Master of Public Administration program.  

John DiIulio, the Frederic Fox Leadership Professor of Politics, Religion, and Civil Society and current director of the Fox Leadership Program, noted that “John Lapinski has brilliantly mentored numerous Fox-supported undergraduate fellows while helping greatly to expand fellowships from 50 in 2012 to more than 150 in each of the last two years. His exciting vision for both PORES and Fox is all about equipping and empowering students and recent alumni for 21st century leadership challenges.” 

“We are delighted,” said Penn Arts and Sciences Dean Steven J. Fluharty, “to have John Lapinski take the helm of the outstanding program that Bob and Penny Fox have so generously endowed, and that his predecessor, John DiIulio, did so much to make a crowning success.”  Lapinski, he added, “is a major force in national media affairs and through his expertise and dedicated service he has enriched the School and the educational experiences of our students in many ways.”

Robert A. Fox Leadership Professor Dennis DeTurck, the former Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, added that “John’s outstanding contributions to Penn include his service as chairperson of the undergraduate program in Political Science,” and Nora Lewis, Vice Dean of the College of Liberal and Professional Studies (LPS) commented that “Professor Lapinski has served in a leadership role on the LPS faculty oversight committee for many years, providing invaluable support to advance the LPS mission of promoting access and innovation in educational programming. We are grateful for his vision and commitment.”

Established in 1999, the Fox Program has received more than $32 million in support from Robert A. Fox, C’52, and Penny Grossman Fox, Ed’53. Past holders of the Robert A. Fox Leadership chair have included former Penn President Judith N. Rodin, who served as acting faculty director of the Fox Program in 2001, and Zellerbach Family Professor of Psychology Martin E.P. Seligman. 

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