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Dr. Maria Harper-Marinick, Chair of the Advisory Committee, was appointed in 2012 by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to serve a term that expires in September 2016. Dr. Harper-Marinick is Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost for the Maricopa Community College District in Arizona. She provides oversight for curriculum, academic research, student affairs, strategic planning and institutional effectiveness, university relations and transfer articulation, grants development, international education, faculty professional development, high school to college pathways programs, workforce development, and small business development. She also works closely with the Chancellor in three major areas: definition and implementation of the District's strategic plan and allocation of resources; leading initiatives to enhance access and increase student success; and building the stature and recognition of the District and its ten colleges locally, nationally, and internationally. Dr. Harper-Marinick serves on national and local boards and councils including Western Alliance of Community College Academic Leaders; National Community College Hispanic Council; National Advisory Board for the Center for Community College Student Engagement (CCCSE); ETS National Community College Advisory Council; American Association for Community Colleges’ Commission on Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity; League for Innovation in the Community College; Arizona Minority Education Policy Analysis Center (AMEPAC); Arizona Business and Education Coalition (ABEC); Arizona Public Engagement Task Force; Arizona’s College and Career Readiness Partnership; Morrison Institute for Public Policy’s Latino Public Policy Center Advisory Board; Morrison Institute for Public Policy’s CTE Advisory Committee; Valley of the Sun United Way Financial Stability Advisory Council; Arizona Women in Higher Education Executive Board; Arizona’s Latina Giving Circle; Thriving Together Leadership Council; and Arizona Superintendent for Public Instruction’s Hispanic Advisory Group. Originally from the Dominican Republic, Dr. Harper-Marinick came to Arizona as a LASPAU-Fulbright Scholar to attend Arizona State University (ASU). She holds a PhD in educational technology and an MA in instructional media from ASU.

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Ms. Roberta Johnson, Vice Chair of the Advisory Committee, was appointed in 2013 by Senator Tom Harkin to serve a term that expires in September 2016. Roberta is Director of Student Financial Aid at Iowa State University, the first land-grant institution in the United States. She has over thirty years of financial aid experience, starting her career as a Loan Secretary and advancing to positions of Administrative Secretary, Loan Counselor, Loan Coordinator, Assistant Director for Student Loans, Associate Director, and Director. She has held the title of director since 2003. Her involvement in the Iowa Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, Midwest Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, and the National Direct Student Loan Coalition includes active participation in committees, leadership roles, and conference presentations. Roberta has a BS in Home Economics Education, a BS in Elementary Education, and an MS in Counselor Education all from Iowa State University.

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Dr. Andrew Gillen was appointed in 2013 by the President Pro Tempore of the Senate to serve a term that expires in September 2017. Andrew is a Program Officer at the Charles Koch Foundation and an adjunct professor of economics at Johns Hopkins University. His research addresses numerous issues in higher education, including financial aid, the economics of higher education, transparency and accountability, and accreditation. He received a Bachelors in Business Administration from Ohio University, and an MS and PhD in Economics from Florida State University.

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Dr. Fred Hurst was appointed in 2013 by Representative Ann Kirkpatrick to serve a term that expires in September 2016. Dr. Hurst is the Senior Vice President for the Extended Campuses of Northern Arizona University. He is known for his leadership in a number of transformative initiatives in American post-secondary education. Most recently, he has led the administrative and faculty teams that have created a ground-breaking "university within a university" at Northern Arizona University through their new Personalized Learning Initiative. Also under Fred's direction, the Northern Arizona University Extended Campuses have developed an innovative accelerated degree program for adult students, growing Extended Campus enrollments to over 7,700 per semester. His career in higher education and technology includes serving as the Founding Executive Director of the Florida Public Postsecondary Distance Learning Institute where he developed "Florida's Campus," a web-based electronic catalog of all of Florida's public higher education distance learning courses and degree programs. In the late 1980s, Hurst and his colleagues helped establish the Educational Network of Maine, one of the country's first statewide educational video networks that served higher education, K-12 education and libraries. He serves the North Central Association (NCA) Higher Learning Commission as a member of the Institutional Actions Council, team chair and consultant-evaluator. He received his PhD in Higher Education Policy and Philanthropic Studies at Union Institute and University, a Master in Public Administration degree at Wichita State University, and master and baccalaureate degrees in Instructional Systems Technology and Telecommunications from Indiana University Bloomington.

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Dr. Michael Poliakoff was appointed in 2013 by the President Pro Tempore of the Senate to serve a term that expires in September 2017. Dr. Poliakoff is Vice President of Policy at the American Council of Trustees and Alumni (ACTA) in Washington DC. He oversees ACTA's programming and publications and works directly with ACTA's constituents on behalf of higher education reform. He previously served as vice president for academic affairs and research at the University of Colorado and in senior roles at the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Council on Teacher Quality, the American Academy for Liberal Education, and the Pennsylvania Department of Education. He has taught at Georgetown University, George Washington University, Hillsdale College, the University of Illinois at Chicago, and Wellesley College. He has also been a junior fellow at the Center for Hellenic Studies, and his research has been supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst, and the Alexander Von Humboldt Stiftung. He is the author of numerous books and journal articles in classical studies and education policy and has received the American Philological Association's Excellence in Teaching Award and the Pennsylvania Department of Education's Distinguished Service to Education Award. He received his BA magna cum laude from Yale University and went on to study at Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar, and the University of Michigan, where he earned a PhD in classical studies.

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Ms. Tiffany Taylor was appointed in 2013 by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to serve a term that expires in September 2017. She graduated from the University of Chicago with three majors and as a student marshal, the highest undergraduate academic honor. During her undergraduate years, she founded two non-profits and studied and conducted research abroad in France, China, South Africa, South Korea, Zambia, and Tanzania. She was also a Fulbright Research Fellow in New Delhi, Zambia. She is currently the United States Youth Observer to the United Nations, a Delegate representing the United States at the 58th session for the Commission on the Status of Women, and a Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Graduate Fellow at Columbia University.

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Mr. John White was appointed in 2014 by the President Pro Tempore of the Senate to serve a term that expires in September 2018. John is a Strategic Advisor to the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) President and Professor of Law at the William S. Boyd School of Law. John previously served as the Executive Vice President and Provost of UNLV and second dean of UNLV's William S. Boyd School of Law. John joined the Boyd School of Law from Louisiana State University (LSU) Paul M. Hebert Law Center where he was the J. Dawson Gasquet Memorial Professor of Law. At LSU, he taught for 15 years and wrote and lectured about civil rights law. He was also a Distinguished Visiting Professor at the University of Insubria in Como, Italy, where he explored the role of civil rights law and multicultural theories in responding to globalism. He helped organize and direct a summer school in comparative law in Insubria and twice directed the LSU summer program in Lyon, France. Before teaching law, he was an Orville Schell Fellow at Human Rights Watch in New York City where he worked on prison and human rights practices in Egypt. He is a member of the Governing Board for the University Medical Center (UMC) and Chairman of the Nevada Institute for Autonomous Systems (NIAS). He serves on the ARC Board of Directors for Opportunity Village and the Board for the Andre Agassi Foundation, as well as the Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada. John served as a member of Governor Brian Sandoval's Graduate Medical Education Task Force, which was charged to make recommendations to the Governor on the status of Nevada's graduate medical education programs. John received his JD from Yale Law School in 1991, where he was a Notes and Topics Editor for the Yale Law Journal and participated in the Jerome N. Frank Legal Service Organization.

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Advisory Committee on Student Financial Assistance

This page last modified— July 13, 2015 (jc)