Academic Advisory Council


The ASU School of Public Affairs' mission is to understand and address society's grandest challenges in public management, policy and governance. We seek to maximize our impact through rigorous transdisciplinary research, project-based education, collaborative and inclusive community engagement, experiential learning and innovative solutions.


To provide guidance and counsel on the academic preparation and competencies of school graduates at the undergraduate and graduate levels.  This collaboration will be used to develop course work, guide research of relevant centers, and identify practical experience opportunities for students.



Donald Siegel, Director, School of Public Affairs
Dr. Donald Siegel is a Foundation Professor of Public Policy and Management and Director of the School of Public Affairs at Arizona State University. The School’s MPA program is ranked #14 in the country, according to U.S. News and World Report and #3 in research, according to the Shanghai Academic Ranking of World Universities. From 2008-2016, Don served as Dean of the School of Business at the University at Albany, SUNY. He received his bachelor’s degree in economics and his master’s and doctoral degrees in business economics from Columbia University. He then served as a Sloan Foundation post-doctoral fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research. Don has also taught at SUNY-Stony Brook, the University of Nottingham, RPI, where was he was Chair of the Economics Department, and the University of California-Riverside, where he served as Associate Dean for Graduate Studies. 
Dr. Spiro Maroulis, Associate Professor, School of Public Affairs
Dr. Spiro Maroulis is an associate professor at the School of Public Affairs, the MPA/MPP Program Director, and the associate director for policy informatics at Arizona State University's Decision Theater. Prior to coming to ASU, Maroulis was a visiting assistant professor of social enterprise and a postdoctoral research fellow at the Ford Center for Global Citizenship at the Kellogg School of Management. Maroulis received his bachelor's degree from Duke University, master's degree from Harvard University and doctorate from Northwestern University, where he was also a member of the Center for Connected Learning and Computer-Based Modeling (CCL) and the Northwestern Institute on Complex Systems (NICO). Outside of academia, he has worked for Red Hat Software and Anderson Consulting (now Accenture), and was also the cofounder of PracticeFields, LLC, a corporate education and consulting company that creates computer simulations and interactive board games of business problems.
George Pettit, Professor of Practice, School of Public Affairs
George Pettit joined ASU as a Professor of Practice in May, 2012.  He has a Bachelor’s and Master’s in Public Administration from the University of Colorado, Boulder and is a graduate of the Harvard Senior Executives in State and Local Government Program.  He served in local government for over 30 years starting in Des Moines, Iowa and completing his career with 25 years’ service to the Town of Gilbert Arizona including eight years as Manager.  In that time Gilbert grew from 12,105 to 204,000 people.  His areas of expertise include all aspects of financial planning and management, strategic planning, and general management.  Included in his current ASU responsibilities is coordination of the Marvin Andrews Fellowship at ASU, a program dedicated to developing the next generation of municipal managers.  He was appointed as Associate Director of the School of Public Affairs in July, 2013, completing the appointment in August,2015.
Jen Marsn, Executive Director, Arizona Association of Counties
Jen Marson is the Executive Director at the Arizona Association of Counties (AACo). She manages the daily operations of the Association and the Government Services Foundation, directs the state and federal government affairs program and cultivates new business and membership opportunities. She also serves as the primary liaison to the National Association of Counties and other state associations and coordinates the Association’s educational outreach programs. Jen’s research and advocacy areas of expertise include elections, property taxes, public records, criminal justice, law enforcement, justice and superior courts and education. Marsn has been with AACo since 2002 when she started as the legislative intern. Since then she has worn nearly every hat in the Association before being selected as Executive Director in 2013. Jen received the “Friend of Education” award in 2013 and has been a Certified Election Officer since 2007. In 2013 she was nominated by the capitol community as of the of the “Best Female Lobbyists Under 40”. Marsn is a native of Arizona and received both a Bachelor of Arts and a Master’s degree in Communication Studies from Arizona State University with an emphasis in rhetoric and advocacy.
James Jayne, County Manager, Navajo County
James Jayne became Navajo County Manger in 2003.  Prior to joining Navajo County, he served as Executive Secretary for the Arizona Corporation Commission, Chief of Staff for the AZ House of Representatives, worked at the Arizona Water Banking Authority and in the US Congress.  Jayne received his undergraduate degree from NAU, his MPA and Certified Public Manager Certification from ASU and completed the Senior Executives in State and Local Government Program at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. In February 2011, Jayne was awarded the John J. DeBolske Award – the highest achievement for the public management profession in Arizona.  July 2013 Jayne received the Gabe Zimmerman Public Service Award for Innovation - a statewide award for non-elected public servants.Jayne serves on the Alliance for Innovation Board, ASU School of Public Affairs Academic Advisory Council, AZ Town Hall Executive Board, Show Low Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee and several other national and state professional organizations. Jayne and his wife of 24 years Lisa were both raised in Gilbert and moved to Show Low in 1999.  Jayne and his family enjoy spending time outdoors together and attending the children’s school and extracurricular activities.
Angie Flick, Chief Administrator, Flood Control District of Maricopa County
Angie Flick became the Chief Administrator for the Flood Control District in September 2018. In this role she is responsible for managing over $120M in operating and capital budgets and almost 200 positions. She joined Maricopa County in 2006 serving as an OMB Budget Analyst and Supervisor, County Strategic Planning Administrator and ERP Systems Administrator before joining Flood Control. Angie holds a Bachelors and Masters in Business from the University of Arizona and a Doctorate in Public Administration and Policy from Arizona State University. She is an adjunct faculty instructor for the School of Public Affairs.

Mike Hutchinson, Retired Manager, City of Mesa, Local Government Representative
Mike Hutchinson has worked at the East Valley Partnership since 2008. He is currently serving as the Interim CEO and President until mid-summer of 2016, when Mayor John Lewis of Gilbert will assume the CEO position. Prior to this Interim role, he served as the Project Manager for the PHX East Valley Branding Project, as well as the Superstition Vistas Project. He has also served on the Board of Directors of several organizations including: A New Leaf, Arizona Academic Decathlon Association, Mesa United Way, Mesa Public Safety Foundation, Visit Mesa, Mesa Arts Center Foundation and Gateway Commercial Bank. Prior to his employment at the East Valley Partnership, Mike worked for the City of Mesa for 28 years, serving as City Manager from 2000-2005.  During his career he received several professional awards and was the Mesa Chamber of Commerce 2006 recipient of the 21st Century Business Leadership Award for the public sector. He was named Mesa Man of the Year for 2011, in recognition of his volunteer work in the community. He is a Life Member of both the Arizona City/County Management and the International City/County Management Association and continues to be active in city management issues and education in Arizona. Hutchinson received a Bachelor of Arts in History from the State University of New York at Oswego in 1975 and a Master’s in Public Administration from Arizona State University in 1977. He is married to Marcie Jergel Hutchinson. They have two adult children; Erin and Mary Beth.
Tom Belshe, League of Arizona Cities and Towns
Tom Belshe is the Deputy Director for the League of Arizona Cities and Towns.  From October 2001 until December of 2004, Tom served as an Assistant Deputy Director for the Department of Commerce overseeing the operations of the Community Development Division.  He also served as Executive Director of the Greater Arizona Development Authority (GADA) where he was appointed in September of 1999.  From July of 1998 until his appointment as Executive Director, Mr. Belshe worked as the Community Development Manager for GADA developing the Technical Assistance and the Community Outreach Programs.  Before joining the GADA staff, he worked for the League of Arizona Cities and Towns for five years where he coordinated the Technical Assistance program which includes the League’s training program, publications, conferences, website and inquiry program.  Belshe also worked in the City Manager’s Office for the City of Provo, Utah. Belshe received his Bachelor of Science in Economics and his Master of Public Administration degree from Brigham Young University.
Ed Zuercher, City Manager, City of Phoenix
Ed Zuercher was appointed Phoenix City Manager on Feb. 19, 2014.  In this role, Zuercher is the Chief Administrative Officer for the city of Phoenix and oversees the largest council-manager form of government in the United States, with 14,500 city employees, including seven employee unions and associations. He encourages city employees to focus on working smarter, saving money aggressively and treating residents kindly in order to maintain residents' high public approval ratings for city services. Working with the Mayor and City Council, he is responsible for a city budget of $3.2 billion, including airport, water/wastewater, solid waste, convention center and hotel, transit system and general city services. Zuercher’s twenty year career with the city started as a Management Intern and grew to include Assistant to the City Manager, Public Transit Director, Deputy City Manager, Mayor’s Chief of Staff, and Assistant City Manager. He received his Master of Public Administration from the University of Kansas and his B.A. in English/secondary education from Goshen College in Indiana. Prior to his time at the city of Phoenix, Ed taught high school English and American History. He enjoys life in central Phoenix with his wife and two teenage daughters.
Gerald P. Richard II, Retired, City of Phoenix Police Department
Gerald P. Richard II, Esq., currently is a member of the Department of Justice, Institute for Intergovernmental Research (IIR) Collaborative Reform Initiative Team focusing on the Salinas, California police department.  He recently served on the IIR After-Action Assessment Team for Ferguson, Missouri.  He retired after serving as assistant to the Chief of Police of the Phoenix, Arizona, Police Department.  He was responsible for overseeing the Phoenix Police Training Academy and the Employment Services Bureau as well as department leadership development and training.  He was also responsible for implementing recommendations submitted by the Community Engagement and Outreach Task Force and community advisory boards, overall police and community relations, and legislative issues.  Previously, Mr. Richard served the Arizona Attorney General’s Office as a Special Policy Advisor for Law Enforcement.  His experience includes positive and proactive police/community development, negotiations, and resolutions; passive and large-scaled, highly charged controversial demonstrations; public safety and emergency management; local, regional, and federal planning; corporate communications; intra- and intergovernmental relations; grant oversight; community-oriented crime prevention and intervention services; and other core public services  He is an experienced litigator, arbitrator, and legal advisor for local, state, federal, community, and faith-based organizations.  He has extensive experience serving as adjunct faculty/guest lecturer.  He is a member or past member of numerous professional associations, boards, and commissions.  He is the pastor of Harbert Chapel A.M.E. Church in Flagstaff, Arizona.
 Kevin Phelps, City Manager, City of Glendale
Glendale City Manager Kevin Phelps is the top executive for the city of Glendale, which is part of a growing area of Maricopa County and the sixth largest city in AZ. His responsibilities include managing day-to-day operations and policy implementation for all city departments and divisions and ensuring prudent fiscal stewardship for the city. Mr. Phelps is a board member for the Glendale Chamber of Commerce, an Executive Board member for the Arizona City/County Management Association (ACMA) and a member of International City/County Management Association (ICMA). Mr. Phelps’ government leadership includes serving as the highest ranking appointed official in Pierce County, Washington, an area that includes greater Tacoma and is the state’s second largest county. Prior to that, he was a deputy auditor for the Washington State Auditor’s office, and was a councilmember for the city of Tacoma, Washington. Before his tenure in government, he had more than 30 years of experience in the private sector as a businessman, which includes being the founder and managing partner of the Landmark Convention Center in Tacoma. Mr. Phelps represents the ACMA on the Committee.
Joy Rich, AICP
Joy Rich was named County Manager of Maricopa County, Arizona in May, 2016. Prior to her appointment as County Manager, she served as Deputy County Manager, Assistant County Manager, and Planning & Development Director. Before joining Maricopa County, she worked for both the cities of Phoenix and Glendale, Arizona as a planner and neighborhood programs administrator. Ms. Rich holds Bachelor of Science in Physical Geography and Master of Public Administration degrees from Arizona State University.  She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners, the American Planning Association, the Arizona Planning Association, and the Arizona City/County Management Association.  
Mindy Russell, Management Assistant City of Peoria, for Arizona Government Finance Officers Association
Mindy Russell is the Management Assistant in the City of Peoria Finance and Budget Department.  She has spent the majority of her career in the public sector, and she has been with the City of Peoria since 1992.  Mindy has had the opportunity to work in several areas including Public Works, Fire Department, Community Services and the City Manager’s office, and has spent the past 18 years in Finance and Budget.  Russell has been a member of the Government Finance Officers Association of Arizona (GFOAz) for 16 years.  She has served on the GFOAz Board for the past eight years, and is currently the Immediate Past President.   She has also served on the GFOAz Education Committee for the past 13 years, acting as the committee chair for six years.

Kari Kent, Deputy City Manager, City of Mesa, Alumni Representative
Kari Kent has been Assistant City Manager since June 2007 and currently oversees the Development Services; Energy Resources; Engineering; Parks, Recreation and Community Facilities; Transportation and Water Resources Departments. Kent began her career with Mesa as a Management Assistant and was promoted to Solid Waste Management Director in 1999, Assistant Development Services Director in July 2001 and Neighborhood Services Director in June 2006. Prior to coming to the City of Mesa, Ms. Kent was a Budget Analyst for the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality. Kent is currently the Past President of the Arizona City/County Management Association, a Board member on the Arizona State University School of Public Affairs Advisory Council and the Local Support Initiatives Corporation Local Advisory Board, and a member of the International City/County Management Association. Kent received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Political Science from Northern Arizona University and a Masters of Public Administration from Arizona State University.
Kaitlin Harrier, Policy Advisor, Arizona Governor’s Office
Kaitlin has served as a policy advisor to Governor Ducey since September of 2018, first as Administration and Economic Affairs Advisor, and since August 2019 as Education Policy Advisor. In this role, Kaitlin works with education stakeholders throughout Arizona to develop policy recommendations and analysis for the governor on matters impacting all levels throughout the education continuum: early childhood, K-12, postsecondary, and workforce development. Before joining the Governor’s policy team, Kaitlin completed four fiscal years at the Governor’s Office of Strategic Planning and Budgeting, starting out as a budget analyst and eventually taking on the role of budget manager. During her time on the budget team she made key contributions to the governor’s K-12 funding initiatives, including Proposition 123 and Arizona’s Volkswagen settlement school bus program. While completing her education, Kaitlin served a 2-year term as a Student Regent on the Arizona Board of Regents, representing the student perspective while overseeing the management and operational strategy of Arizona’s three public universities. She received her bachelor’s degree in political science from Northern Arizona University, and her master’s degree in public administration from Arizona State University. Kaitlin has lived in Arizona since 2004, and proudly calls Peoria home.
 Marissa Garnett, Economic Development Coordinator, Town of Queen Creek
Marissa Garnett, CEcD, AICP serves as the chair of the Arizona Association for Economic Development (AAED) Professional Education committee. Currently, she is the Economic Development Coordinator for the Town of Queen Creek. Marissa holds a master's degree in Urban and Environmental Planning from Arizona State University, a bachelor's degree in Political Science and Spanish from Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts, and is a Master of Business Administration candidate at Benedictine University, Mesa, Arizona. She enjoys using her knowledge of planning and fascination for data and analytics to help businesses make informed decisions. Marissa is a member of the International Economic Development Council and the American Planning Association, and is a Certified Economic Developer and Certified Planner through these organizations.
 Erin Hart, COO, Expect More Arizona
Erin has more than 15 years of experience in education policy, advocacy strategy and operational development, serving in roles at the state and national level. She currently serves as the COO of Expect More Arizona. Previously she worked for the National PTA, Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano, and Arizona Governor Jane Hull. She is a graduate of Valley Leadership, where she is also a Board Member and the Chair of the Education Impact Team. She is also a Flinn-Brown Fellow and is the Chair of the First Things First Regional Partner Council in NW Maricopa. She serves on the State Board of Education’s K-3 Literacy Committee, the ADE English Language Learners Advisory Council, the NALEO Advisory Committee, and the Arizona Early Childhood Alliance. She is a recipient of the Forty Under 40 Award, Amazing Woman Award from the Phoenix Suns & National Bank of Arizona and the “Do Gooder” Arizona Award. She is a proud Sun Devil and received a Bachelor of Science degree from the WP Carey School of Business with honors and an Executive Master’s of Public Administration degree from the School of Public Affairs.