Hauser Leaders Program

The Hauser Leaders Program at Harvard Kennedy School hosts a unique portfolio of high-profile leaders and practitioners from across public, nonprofit, and private sectors. Hauser Leaders spend their time on campus advising students and engaging with faculty during richly-programmed visits throughout the academic year. By teaching skill-building and leadership development workshops, engaging key external stakeholders, and advising students and alumni, Hauser Leaders enact the Center for Public Leadership’s mission to develop principled, effective public leaders who make positive change in the world. Hauser Leaders also inform Harvard curriculum by speaking in the classroom, engaging in research and case development, and sharing expertise with lead faculty.

Contact us for more information on the Hauser Leaders Program.

Spring 2021 Hauser Leaders

Tommy Amaker

Tommy Amaker headshotTommy Amaker
Hauser Leader, Center for Public Leadership
Thomas G. Stemberg '71 Family Endowed Coach, Harvard Men's Basketball
Executive Fellow, Harvard Business School

Tommy Amaker is the Thomas G. Stemberg ’71 Family Endowed Coach for Harvard Men’s Basketball. Coach Amaker has led the Harvard program to the most successful 13-year stretch in Ivy League history, also making him the all-time winningest coach in program history. His accomplishments include guiding the team to four consecutive NCAA tournament appearances, seven Ivy League Championships, three NIT appearances and six 20-win seasons.

Prior to his time at Harvard, Coach Amaker served as the head coach at both the University of Michigan and Seton Hall University. Early in his career he was an assistant coach and associate head coach at his alma mater, Duke University. While at Duke, Amaker led the team to the 1986 NCAA title game and, as team captain, was named an All-American and college basketball National Defensive Player of the Year. He also won a gold medal as part of the US National team in 1986 and was subsequently drafted in the 1987 NBA Draft.

Amaker serves as an Executive Fellow at Harvard Business School, Special Assistant to Harvard President Larry Bacow, and is a member of the Board of Overseers for the Boys & Girls Club of Boston. More information on Coach Amaker can be found on his website.

Deborah Borda

Deborah Borda headshotDeborah Borda
Hauser Leader, Center for Public Leadership

President and CEO, New York Philharmonic

Deborah Borda is President and CEO of the New York Philharmonic, a role she assumed in September 2017. Previously, Ms. Borda was President and CEO of the LA Philharmonic; Executive Director of the NY Philharmonic; General Manager of the San Francisco Symphony; President and Managing Director of The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra; and Executive Director of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.

Throughout her career, Ms. Borda has extended the artistic, commercial, and technological boundaries of American symphony orchestras. Within her first few months after returning to the NY Phil in 2017, she assembled a new leadership team to support her and Music Director Designate Jaap van Zweden’s vision for the Orchestra, and announced a $50mm launch fund to usher in a new era of fiscal stability. In her first decade in Los Angeles, Ms. Borda reinvigorated plans to build and launch Walt Disney Concert Hall, oversaw the addition of a new shell for the Hollywood Bowl, and reimagined and diversified programming at both venues. She also spearheaded the appointment of music director Gustavo Dudamel, with whom she invested in groundbreaking educational and social change initiatives, including the founding of YOLA (Youth Orchestra Los Angeles) and the national Take a Stand initiative.

In May 2017, she received an Honorary Doctor of Music degree from the Curtis Institute of Music, and in 2018 she was named Chair, Avery Fisher Artist Program. In October 2018, Ms. Borda will be inducted as a member of the prestigious American Academy of Arts and Sciences

LaTosha Brown

LaTHeadshot of LaTosha Brownosha Brown
Hauser Leader
, Center for Public Leadership
Co-founder, Black Voters Matter Fund
2020-2021 American Democracy Fellow, Charles Warren Center, Harvard University

LaTosha Brown's work dwells at the intersection of social justice, political empowerment, human development and the cultural arts. As co-founder of the Black Voters Matter (BVM) Fund and the BVM Capacity Building Institute, founder of the Saving OurSelves Coalition, and leader of the Southern Black Girls & Women’s Consortium, Brown fights on behalf of others for access to quality education, safety and security, peace, and the elimination of human suffering. A thought leader and social strategist, Brown’s philanthropic efforts have raised millions, and established donor networks and community-led funds to support social justice initiatives in marginalized communities across the U.S. Brown also leads international endeavors to provide training, support and funding for women-led institutions across Africa and Central America.

Recognizing that her work is not rooted in strengthening political systems, governments or institutions—but in the advancement of people—Brown reminds those she serves of the power they hold within, leading them from vision to strategy to manifestation. Additionally, through music and storytelling, Brown is transforming the narrative of African-Americans through media, campaigns and nonprofit projects.

She is a regular guest on multiple national media outlets and has received numerous accolades including the 2018 Bridge Jubilee Award and Liberty Bell Award, the 2010 White House Champion of Change Award, the 2006 Spirit of Democracy Award, and the Louis Burnham Award for Human Rights. She serves on the board of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation, the Southern Documentary Fund, the U.S. Human Rights Network and the Congressional Progressive Caucus Center. During the 2020-2021 academic year, she will serve as a fall, 2020 Leader in Practice at Harvard Kennedy School’s Women and Public Policy Program and a 2020-2021 American Democracy Fellow at Harvard University’s Charles Warren Center for Studies in American History.

Michael Brown

Headshot of Hauser Leader Michael BrownMichael Brown
Hauser Leader, Center for Public Leadership
Co-founder and Senior Advisor, City Year
Principal, Public Purpose Strategies

Michael Brown is senior advisor and co-founder of City Year, an education nonprofit mobilizing young people for a year of service in under-resourced schools, which served as the inspiration for AmeriCorps. Brown led City Year for 30 years, including 13 as CEO. In 2020, he launched Public Purpose Strategies, which advises nonprofits, philanthropies and corporations on maximizing their strategic initiatives.

Brown has been awarded the Reebok Human Rights Award, Independent Sector’s John W. Gardner Leadership Award and has been named one of America’s Best Leaders by US News & World Report as well as an Executive of the Year and member of The Power and Influence Top 50 by The NonProfit Times.

Brown is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School, where he served as an editor of the Harvard Law Review. He served as president of Harvard’s Board of Overseers from 2019-2020. Prior to co-founding City Year, Brown served as a legislative assistant to then Congressman Leon Panetta and as a clerk for Federal Judge Stephen Breyer.


Michael Lomax

Michael Lomax headshotMichael Lomax
Hauser Leader, Center for Public Leadership

President and CEO, UNCF

Since 2004, Dr. Michael L. Lomax has served as president and CEO of UNCF, the nation’s largest private provider of scholarships and other educational support to African American students and a leading advocate of college readiness: students’ need for an education, from pre-school through high school, that prepares them for college success. Under his leadership, UNCF has raised more than $3 billion and helped more than 110,000 students earn college degrees and launch careers.  Annually, UNCF’s work enables 60,000 students to go to college with UNCF scholarships and attend its 37 member historically black college and universities (HBCUs).

At UNCF’s helm, Dr. Lomax oversees the organization’s 400 scholarship programs, which award 10,000 scholarships a year.  He also launched the UNCF Institute for Capacity Building, which helps UNCF’s member HBCUs become stronger, more effective and more self-sustaining.

Under Dr. Lomax’s leadership, UNCF has fought for college readiness and education reform through partnerships with reform-focused leaders and organizations and worked to further advance HBCUs with Congress, the administration and the Department of Education.  He serves on the boards of the KIPP Foundation, America’s Promise, Teach for America and the Studio Museum in Harlem.

Before joining UNCF, Dr. Lomax was president of Dillard University in New Orleans and a literature professor at UNCF-member institutions Morehouse and Spelman Colleges.  He also founded the National Black Arts Festival, was a founding member of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) and served as chairman of the Fulton County Commission in Atlanta, the first African American elected to that post.

Bruce Mehlman

Bruce Mehlman HeadshotBruce Mehlman
Hauser Leader, Center for Public Leadership

Founder, Mehlman Castagnetti Rosen & Thomas
Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Technology Policy to George W. Bush (2001-2003)

Bruce Mehlman leads the bipartisan firm he founded after serving at senior levels in politics, policy and business. Mehlman Castagnetti Rosen & Thomas helps Fortune 500 companies and innovative startups understand, anticipate and navigate the ever-evolving policy environment and trends likely to impact the global marketplace.

A highly sought-after speaker, Mehlman frequently presents to Boards of Directors, global conferences and strategic planning sessions. Mehlman is an adjunct business school professor with The Washington Campus and has lectured on “winning business–government relations” at the Harvard Kennedy School, Yale School of Management and Georgetown University, among others.

Mehlman’s quarterly updates on political trends are widely read by business leaders and political observers across the country and have been frequently covered in leading publications, including the Washington Post, Axios, Politico, CNN, Fortune, the Daily Caller and UVA Center for Politics.

Mehlman previously held the post of Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Technology Policy, having been nominated by President George W. Bush and confirmed by the U.S. Senate in 2001. Before Commerce, he worked as the lead tech and telecom lobbyist for Cisco Systems, Policy Director and General Counsel to the House Republican Conference under Rep. J.C. Watts (R-OK) and General Counsel to the National Republican Congressional Committee.

Mehlman is widely regarded as an expert in running issue campaigns, managing C-suite associations and developing strategies that achieve impactful policy outcomes. He concurrently serves as Executive Director of the Technology CEO Council and Co-Chairman of the Internet Innovation Alliance.


Paola Ramos

Paola Ramos HeadshotPaola Ramos
Hauser Leader, Center for Public Leadership
Correspondent, VICE and VICE News; Contributor, Telemundo News and MSNBC

Paola Ramos is an author, Emmy-award winning journalist and Latinx advocate.

She is a host for VICE and VICE News, as well as a contributor for MSNBC and Telemundo News. Ramos uses these multi-media platforms --in both English and Spanish--to uplift the voices of marginalized communities, break down stereotypes and mobilize people towards civic engagement. Ramos was the former Deputy Director of Hispanic Media for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 Presidential Campaign and a political appointee during the Obama Administration, where she served in Vice President Biden’s Office as Dr. Jill Biden’s Special Assistant. Ramos was also involved in President Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign.

She is the author of Finding Latin-X: In Search of the Voices redefining Latino Identity, published by Penguin Random House in October 2020.

Ramos received her B.A. from Barnard College, Columbia University and her MPP from Harvard University’s Kennedy School. She is Mexican, Cuban and American.

Former Hauser Leaders

Former Hauser Leaders

Tommy Amaker (Spring 2020) || Thomas G. Stemberg '71 Family Endowed Coach, Harvard Men's Basketball; Director's Visiting Leader, Harvard Institute of Politics

Larry Bacow (2014-2018) || President, Harvard UniversityPresident, Tufts University (2001-2011)

Don Baer (Spring 2020) || Chair, Board of Directors, PBS; Walter Shorenstein Media and Democracy Fellow, Shorenstein Center, Harvard Kennedy School

Carol Browner (2019-2020) || Director, White House Office of Energy and Climate Change Policy (2009-2011); 8th Administrator, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (1993-2001)

Geoffrey Canada (Fall 2017) || President, Harlem Children’s Zone

Carol Caruso (2017-2018) || CEO and Co-Founder, Bloom Impact; Innovator-in-Residence, Social Innovation + Change Initiative, Harvard Kennedy School

Alice Chen (2017-2019) || Executive Director, Doctors for America (2011-2017)

Nicholas Ehrmann (2017-2018) || President and Founder, Blue Engine; Visiting Innovator, Social Innovation + Change Initiative, Harvard Kennedy School

Claude Grunitzky (2017-2018) || Entrepreneur, Founder and Editor-in-Chief, TRUE Africa; Visiting Innovator, Social Innovation + Change Initiative, Harvard Kennedy School

Donald Kaberuka (2015-2016) || President, African Development Bank (2005-2015)

Tawakkol Karman (Spring 2020) || 2011 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate

Nicholas Kristof (2017-2019) || Op-ed Columnist, The New York Times; Pulitzer Prize winner

John Kroger (2018-2019) || Chief Learning Officer, U.S. Navy (2019-2020); President, Reed College (2012-2018)

The Hon. Mitchell Landrieu (Spring 2018) || 61st Mayor, New Orleans, Louisiana (2010-2018)

Susana Malcorra (2020) || Dean, IE School of Global and Public Affairs; Minister of Foreign Affairs and Worship, Argentine Republic (2015-2017)

Linda Mason (2014-2017) || Chair, Mercy Corps; Founder, Bright Horizons

Desmond Meade (2020) || President and Executive Director, Florida Rights Restoration Coalition

Karen Gordon Mills (Fall 2018) || 23rd Administrator, United States Small Business Administration (2009-2013)

Vivek Murthy (2017-2019) || 19th United States Surgeon General (2014-2017)

Ellen Ochoa (Spring 2019-Fall 2020) || 11th Director, NASA Johnson Space Center (2013-2018); Astronaut

Emily Kernan Rafferty (Fall 2019) || President Emerita, The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Henry Timms (2018-2019) || President and CEO, Lincoln Center

Doug Ulman (Fall 2019) || President and CEO, Pelotonia

LTG Nadja Y. West, USA, Ret. (2019-2020) || 44th Surgeon General, United States Army (2016-2019)

Sheryl WuDunn (2017-2019) || Co-founder, FullSky Partners; Pulitzer Prize Winner