I was born in Philadelphia but grew up mainly in the beautiful, if surreal, town of Woodside, CA. I spent my final three years of high school in Pennsylvania at Westtown, a Quaker boarding school, before heading off to Yale, where I majored in History. I lived and worked in Arlington, Virginia for a year before crossing the pond to get a M.Phil. in History at Clare College, Cambridge University, where I worked with the political historian Tony Badger. I entered the UC Berkeley Political Science program in 2006 and received my PhD in December 2012, under the supervision of Eric Schickler. In Fall 2012, I moved to Cambridge, MA and joined the MIT Department of Political Science. In February 2014, my wife Sara Newland and I welcomed our son Milo into the world, and in December 2017 his sister Hazel joined the family too.
INTERESTS & HOBBIES
MUSIC: I started studying classical cello in 3rd grade and played in orchestras through college, when I switched most of my musical attention to singing. Since then, I have sung in a number of choral ensembles, including:
- the Whiffenpoofs and the Spizzwinks at Yale
- the Choir of the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC
- the University Chamber Choir and the Selwyn College Chapel Choir at Cambridge
- the San Francisco Choral Artists
- the Cantata Singers in Boston
SPORTS: I like to play basketball, tennis, and more recently frisbee, in which Sara is attempting to train me. She has also made me into an avid fan of the Cal Women’s Basketball Team (Go Bears!).
HIKING & FORAGING: I’m not sure it counts as a sport, but I enjoy hiking and foraging for edible mushrooms with my family (my father is a mushroom expert). I am a card-carrying member of the Mycological Society of San Francisco.