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Liberty + Leadership News: January 14

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We hope you enjoy these news stories about TFAS activities, alumni and events this week. Sign up to receive TFAS updates, and visit us on social media for additional up-to-the-moment TFAS news!

Desiree Koetzle on the Practice of Leadership

Desiree Koetzle is the chief of staff for U.S. Representative Pete Stauber of Minnesota, having perviously served as deputy chief of staff for U.S. Representative Erik Paulsen of Minnesota. Desiree spent six years in the private sector working as a federal affairs representative at Koch Industries and as a government relations analyst at Blank Rome Government Relations. Desiree received a bachelor’s degree in communications from St. Cloud University and was a participant in the TFAS Business + Government Relations program in 2002. She was also a TFAS Public Policy Fellow in 2007.

In this episode of the Liberty and Leadership Podcast, Roger and Desiree discuss how TFAS helped launch her career, how lobbying unfairly gets a bad rap, the perils of government overspending, the types of leadership required in running a congressional office, the ups and downs of their Minnesota/Wisconsin Vikings/Packers rivalry, and how congressional partisanship might be quelled if members just sat down and had a drink together.


Sam Gregg on Liberty and Virtue

Dr. Sam Gregg is the Distinguished Fellow in Political Economy and Senior Research Faculty at the American Institute for Economic Research, a Fellow of the Center for the Study of Law and Religion at Emory University, the Visiting Fellow for the B. Kenneth Simon Center for American Studies at the Heritage Foundation, and a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. Sam perviously directed the Acton Institute’s research and international outreach, including budgeting, personnel, and programming development and implementation. Additionally, he has written 16 books, published 48 academic journal articles, and penned over 300 articles in various periodicals. Sam was the Political Economy Professor for TFAS’s 2020 Virtual Global Political Economy Seminar and in 2022, delivered the annual Neal B. Freeman Lecture in Political Economy. He has a master’s degree from the University of Melbourne and received a doctorate in philosophy from the University of Oxford in moral philosophy and political economy.

In this week’s Liberty and Leadership Podcast, Roger and Sam discuss his new book, The Next American Economy: Nation, State, and Markets in an Uncertain World (which was recently nominated for a National Book Award), the virtues found within the concept of the “commercial republic,” the disconnect between modern U.S. policies and the founding principals of the nation, the impact of the progressive movement in the early 20th century, the economic chasm between the political left and right, the ebb and flow of religious fervor in the US and it’s impact on politics, and Sam’s work at the American Institute for Economic Research.


Annual Conference in Amelia Island, FL

There is still time to register for the TFAS Annual Conference. Enjoy the scenic views of Fernandina Beach on Amelia Island, and connect with the supporters who help TFAS reach countless young leaders each year.

At the conference, guests have the unique opportunity to meet and hear from some of the fantastic speakers, fellows and faculty who reach TFAS students, while building connections with the broader TFAS network.

TFAS Trustee Emeritus Mitch Daniels, former governor of Indiana and president of Purdue University, is one of these featured speakers. Daniels will share keynote remarks at Friday’s dinner on the need for higher education reform.

Join us to hear from Mitch and our other tremendous speakers. View the conference schedule including Thursday’s pre-conference events, and find more details about the weekend at TFAS.org/AC23.

Book Your Room


 Post of the Week

The first TFAS International program of 2023 is underway in Santiago! Fifty one participants from 17 countries have gathered together to study economics, political theory and the basis for the rule of law and institutional governance at Universidad de los Andes in Santiago, Chile.


 TFAS Faculty, Alumni, Supporters in the News

Stela Leuca ’07 was appointed as state secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration of the Republic of Moldova.


TFAS board member Kelly Johnston, wrote a tribute article that honors the life and legacy of TFAS Trustee Juanita Duggan.


Elise Amez-Droz, PPF ’19, wrote an article for the National Review about how the current health-care system is holding back Millennials.


Matthew Taylor King, Rago ’19, wrote an article for The Wall Street Journal about what a 22nd-century historian would say about the war in Ukraine.


Stephanie Slade, Novak ’16, wrote about classical liberal tradition vs. the New Right and how Christians should respond to these tensions in an article for Reason.


Matt Continetti, Novak ’08, argues that it is for moral and national security reasons that the U.S. must support Ukraine in an article for The Washington Free Beacon.


Brad Polumbo, Novak ’22, was interviewed on Kennedy on Fox Business about Southwest Airlines cancelling and delaying 80% of flights during the holidays.


Cyndi Munson ’07 started a new position as the new Democratic House Leader in Oklahoma.


Ximena Bustillo ’19 wrote an article for NPR about the failure to pass immigration reform for farmworkers.


Jovan Tripkovic ’19 launched a new site, Orthodox World Links which gathers Orthodox news reports, analysis, articles, blogs and podcasts.


Mark Stansberry ’76 is the executive producer for docufilm, Sherwood Forest which shares about how pioneers of the oil business from Oklahoma helped fight the Nazis with their knowledge.


Leonardo Mendoza Bernuy ’21 started a new position as a legislative aide/correspondent for Rep. Ritchie Torres.


Nathaniel Urban, PPF ’20, started a new position as development associate for the National Association of Scholars.


During the 2022 EJI Program, Elitsa Simeonova ’22 and Damyana Veleva ’22 wrote an article for Religion Unplugged about how people trying to keep their faith during the communist era.


During the 2022 EJI Program, Janeth Beltrán Apodaca ’22 and Zoe Sharif ’22 interviewed a Czech Republic native about the ‘Seekers And Dwellers’ In The City of Prague.”


Bill Wirtz ’17 wrote an article for The Hill about how the American farm system is more efficient and sustainable when comparing to the European system.


Lyman Stone Novak ’20 wrote an article for Law & Liberty about the truth of demographic decline.


Stephanie Slade, Novak ’16, was interviewed on the AIER Standard Podcast.


Brittney May ’13 started a new position at the National Hydropower Association as a legislative affairs manager.


Carson Fort ’18 started a new position as the Washington, D.C. academic program manager for the John Glenn College of Public Affairs at The Ohio State University.


Alexandra Seymour, PPF ’18, wrote an article for The Hill about semi-protecting semiconductors posing a risk to national security.


Tim Carney, Novak ’03, interviewed Sen. Sasse about his transition from the Senate to the University of Florida in an article for The Washington Examiner.


Maria Shagina ’09 wrote an article for Foreign Policy about how to prevent, deter, and fight in the next potential war.


Connor Torossian ’17, PPF ’22, started a new position as a legislative director for Rep. Marc Molinaro.


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