2017 Civic Learning & Democratic Engagement Meeting Organized by ADP, TDC, and NASPA: Speakers

Martín Carcasson, Ph.D.

Martín Carcasson, Ph.D.

Martín Carcasson, Ph.D., is a professor in the Communication Studies department of Colorado State University, and the founder and director of the CSU Center for Public Deliberation (CPD). He also serves as a Senior Public Engagement Fellow with Public Agenda, a nationally recognized public engagement firm based in New York, works with Colorado State University Extension, serves on the faculty of the Kettering Foundation’s Centers for Public Life program, and is the incoming chair of the National Coalition for Dialogue and Deliberation Board of Directors. His research focuses on deliberative engagement and collaborative problem-solving. He has received additional certification training by the National Issues Forum, the International Association of Public Participation, and the Institute for Participatory Management and Planning.  The CPD serves as an impartial resource for the Northern Colorado community dedicated to enhancing local democracy through improved public communication, community problem solving, and collaborative decision-making. Dr. Carcasson trains students and community members to serve as impartial facilitators, who then work with local governments, school boards, and community organizations to analyze tough issues and then design, facilitate, and report on innovative public forums on those issues.  His research has been published in Rhetoric & Public Affairs, the Journal of Public Deliberation, Higher Education Exchange, the International Journal of Conflict Resolution,New Directions in Higher Education, Public Sector Digest, Communication Theory, National Civic Review, Colorado Municipalities, Journal of Applied Communication Research, and the Quarterly Journal of Speech. 

Jane Coaston

Jane Coaston

Jane Coaston is a political reporter for MTV News based in Washington, DC. Her reporting has focused recently on the political right and the Republican Party. A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, she attended the University of Michigan.

Dr. Freeman A. Hrabowski

Dr. Freeman HrabowskiDr. Freeman A. Hrabowski, President of UMBC (University of Maryland, Baltimore County) since 1992, is a consultant on science and math education to national agencies, universities, and school systems. He was named by President Obama to chair the President’s Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for African Americans. He also chaired the National Academies’ committee that produced the report, Expanding Underrepresented Minority Participation: America’s Science and Technology Talent at the Crossroads (2011).

Named one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World by TIME (2012) and one of America’s Best Leaders by U.S. News & World Report (2008), he also received TIAA-CREF’s Theodore M. Hesburgh Award for Leadership Excellence (2011), the Carnegie Corporation’s Academic Leadership Award (2011), and the Heinz Award (2012) for contributions to improving the “Human Condition.” UMBC has been recognized as a model for inclusive excellence by such publications as U.S. News, which the past eight years has recognized UMBC as a national leader in academic innovation and undergraduate teaching.

Eric Liu

Eric Liu

Eric Liu is an author, educator, and civic entrepreneur. He is the founder and CEO of Citizen University, which promotes and teaches the art of powerful citizenship through a portfolio of national programs ( citizenuniversity.us), and the executive director of the  Aspen Institute Citizenship and American Identity Program. His books include the national bestsellers The Gardens of Democracy, and The True Patriot, co-authored with Nick Hanauer. Eric’s most recent book is You’re More Powerful Than You Think: A Citizen’s Guide to Making Change Happen (March 2017) and a free copy will be provided to CLDE17 participants who register before June 1. In 2002 Liu was named one of the World Economic Forum’s Global Leaders of Tomorrow, and in 2010 he was awarded the Bill Grace Leadership Legacy Award by the Center for Ethical Leadership.

Eric lives in Seattle, where he teaches civic leadership at the University of Washington and hosts Citizen University TV, an award-winning television program about civic power. In addition to speaking regularly at venues across the country, Eric also serves on numerous nonprofit and civic boards. A board member of the Corporation for National and Community Service, he is a graduate of Yale College and Harvard Law School. A regular columnist for CNN.com and a correspondent for  TheAtlantic.com, Eric can be found on Twitter  @ericpliu.


Amber Austin

Amber AustinAmber Austin is a dean’s list student at Tarrant County College (Texas) in her sophomore year. Amber is an active student on her campus, as a current member of The Democracy Commitment, Phi Theta Kappa, DECA, the psychology club, and is the president and founder of the club Imagine. She also represented TCC’s chapter of The Democracy Commitment at the 2016 Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement Meeting in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Tyler Ferrari

Tyler FerrariTyler Ferrari is a political science student from Chapman University (Ca.). He hopes to become a policy analyst on Capitol Hill, specializing in debt reduction and foreign relations. Tyler enjoys the outdoors and watching movies in his free time.

Christina Melecio

Christina MelecioChristina Melecio is a sophomore at Winona State University (Minn.). Christina is a triple major in political science, public administration, and Spanish. She is a student senator at Winona State, the treasurer of College Democrats, and president of the campus Political Science Association club. Christina loves being involved in student life activities and working with her peers.




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