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Democracy and U.S. Election Reform

June 4, 2020 @ 12:00 pm - 1:15 pm


Patricia A. Kirkland, Assistant Professor of Politics and Public Affairs



Jonathan C. Mattingly *98, JB Duke Professor of Mathematics and Statistical Science, Duke University

Richard F. Ober, Jr. ’65, Legal Analyst, Princeton Gerrymandering Project, Princeton University

Manny Gonzalez ’85, Senior Director, Cultural Diversity Marketing, Moet Hennessy USA

Kristin Lynch ’05, National Press Secretary, U.S. Senator Cory Booker


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Patricia A. Kirkland
Assistant Professor of Politics and Public Affairs

As an Assistant Professor of Politics and Public Affairs at Princeton University, Professor Kirkland studies American politics with a focus on subnational politics and public policy.  Her ongoing research leverages original data with a combination of experimental and observational methods to explore representation, public finance, and fiscal health in American cities.  Other projects investigate vote choice in nonpartisan elections and the connection between divided government and legislative performance in the states.

Professor Kirkland received her Ph.D. in Political Science from Columbia University and a B.A. in Political Science from Temple University.




Jonathan C. Mattingly *98
JB Duke Professor of Mathematics and Statistical Science, Duke University

Jonathan Christopher Mattingly grew up in Charlotte, NC.  He graduated from the NC School of Science and Mathematics and received a BS is Applied Mathematics from Yale University. After two years studying nonlinear and statistical physics on a Rotary Fellowship in France, he returned to the US to attend Princeton University where he obtained a PhD in Applied and Computational Mathematics in 1998. After time at Stanford University and the IAS in Princeton, he moved to Duke in 2003. He is currently chair of the Mathematics department and a professor of Statistical Science.

His expertise is in the longtime behavior of stochastic system including randomly forced fluid dynamics, turbulence, stochastic algorithms used in molecular dynamics and Bayesian sampling, and stochasticity in biochemical networks.

Since 2013, he has been developing methods to help identify and quantify gerrymandering. The work of his group has been important to number of recent court including Common Cause v. Rucho, Common Cause v. Lewis, and Harper v. Lewis in which his testimony was presented to the court. The first of these cases went to the US Supreme court and the second two lead to the NC House of representative maps and both NC legislative maps being redrawn. He has also explored germinating in other states including Maryland and Wisconsin. More can be found on his group’s blog https://sites.duke.edu/quantifyinggerrymandering/.


Richard F. Ober, Jr. ’65
Legal Analyst, Princeton Gerrymandering Project, Princeton University

Rick Ober is currently a Legal Analyst for the Princeton Gerrymandering Project, directed by Professor Sam Wang, which translates math into law, and law into math. Both election codes and the Constitution are silent on critical issues of representation and districting. By understanding the real-world impacts of the law as it stands, the Project can help patch holes and fix bugs. This requires an interdisciplinary approach where statistics, mapmaking, and law can work together.

Rick analyzes existing state laws and proposed state level reforms for their ability to prevent gerrymandering.  He is co-author of an article in the November 2019 issue of the University of Pennsylvania Journal of Constitutional Law, Laboratories of Democracy Reform:  State Constitutions and Partisan Gerrymandering, about using state constitutions and courts to stop gerrymanders.  He has also co-authored: Why North Carolina Democrats Should Fight Gerrymandering Using State Law, Washington Post, and The States Are Now the Best Route to Gerrymandering Reform and How Gerrymandering Reform Can Win in the States in The American Prospect. He assisted in the preparation of A Commissioner’s Guide to Redistricting in Michigan. These can be found at gerrymander.princeton.edu/resources/.

Rick’s initial employment was as law clerk to the Chief Judge of Maryland’s highest state court.  He subsequently was an associate at Ballard Spahr in Philadelphia, Executive Vice President and General Counsel of United Jersey Banks/Summit Bancorp for 26 years, and General Counsel of TerraCycle, Inc. and Isles, Inc., finding time between to serve as Research Director in U.S. Senate and U.S. Congressional Campaigns. 

He serves on the Princeton Area Alumni Association Board, interviews for Alumni Schools Committee, and is Class of 1965 Reunion Treasurer and P-Rade Marshall.


Manny Gonzalez ’85
Senior Director, Cultural Diversity Marketing, Moet Hennessy USA

Manny is a successful marketing executive and noted expert in cultural diversity marketing.  Manny currently serves as Senior Director, Cultural Diversity Marketing at Moët Hennessy USA, the luxury wines and spirits company that includes Hennessy cognac and Moët & Chandon champagne.  In this role, Manny manages company’s commercial strategies within multicultural accounts, inclusive of Hispanic, African-American, Asian, women and LGBTQ consumers. Prior to his current position, Manny served as Senior Director, Community Relations where he managed the company’s partnerships with key community organizations such as the NY Puerto Rican Bar Association, the NAACP, the Robert Chinn Foundation, and the Hispanic Federation.  Manny began his career with Moët Hennessy as Brand Director for Hennessy. Manny has also developed partnerships for with several personalities and sports teams, including: Emmy winner Lena Waithe; NBA Hall of Famer Allen Iverson, and; the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Manny previously served as VP of the Hispanic division of Hill Holliday, a Boston-based advertising agency.  Prior to Hill Holliday, Manny was Managing Consultant with Zyman Group, an Atlanta-based marketing consulting firm.  Manny also worked at Diageo North America where he managed Johnnie Walker.  Manny has also served as brand manager for Miller Genuine Draft.  From 1990 to 1998, Manny worked in newspaper marketing, first in several marketing roles with the San Jose Mercury News, and then as marketing manager for Los Angeles-based La Opinión, where he managed one of the first Spanish-language California gubernatorial debates (sponsored by the newspaper and the local Univision TV affiliate).  Manny received his B.A. from Princeton University and his M.B.A. from UCLA.  Manny was born in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico and currently lives in Harlem, New York.


Kristin Lynch ’05
National Press Secretary, U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ)

Kristin Lynch is currently the National Press Secretary for U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ), where she has helped shaped message and strategy around such historic events as the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump, the nomination hearing of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, and passage of the most sweeping set of criminal justice reforms in a generation. During the 2016 presidential election, she was the Colorado Communications Director for Hillary for America, and the Communications Director for Colorado, Wyoming and Utah during the 2016 Presidential primary. She has also served as the Press Secretary for Senators Michael Bennet (D-CO) and Mark Udall (D-CO) and the Communications Director for Congressman Jared Polis (D-CO), who is now Colorado’s Governor. Before entering politics, Lynch was a journalist for the Phnom Penh Post in Cambodia through Princeton in Asia. While at Princeton, Lynch played on the women’s basketball team and worked in Wilcox dining hall.


June 4, 2020
12:00 pm - 1:15 pm
Event Category:


Princeton University
Princeton, NJ 08540 United States
(609) 258 - 3000