Alumni news – November 2023

Farha Tahir (MIPA ’10) was promoted to foreign affairs officer at the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor. Previously, she worked as a program analyst for the bureau, overseeing programs that support democracy around the world. Earlier this year, Tahir won the Wisconsin Alumni Association’s Forward Award, which acknowledges rising stars who exemplify the Wisconsin Idea through an emphasis on service, discovery, and progress. In October, she joined the La Follette School for a career chat with current students.

Susan Cosgrove (MPA ’13) started a new position as senior director, of strategy and development at Health Promotion Council Southeastern Pennsylvania, Inc. Previously, Cosgrove worked in several different roles for the Health Care Improvement Foundation, from project manager to senior director of community impact. While at UW–Madison, Cosgrove developed an evaluation plan for the Western Wisconsin Mental Health Access Audit as part of a project assistantship for the Population Health Institute.

Jordan Krieger (MPA ’17) passed the bar exam and was admitted to the Illinois Bar. He also accepted a position at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP in its D.C. office. Krieger received his J.D. from Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law and worked as a summer associate for Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP in 2022. Previously, he worked for the Wisconsin State Legislature as a legislative assistant and as a communications director.

Mikhaila Calice (MPA ’19) was featured in a recent Wisconsin Energy Institute story about community-led energy transitions. Calice, a postdoctoral research associate in life sciences communication, moderated an October 24 Forward Energy Forum panel on the topic. Her research focuses on how community stakeholders view issues like energy transitions, and how community priorities can be incorporated into higher-level decision making.

Dylan Helmenstine (MPA ’22) was appointed to the Teachers Retirement Board by the governor. He was appointed as a school board member due to his service on the Wisconsin Heights School Board, which he was elected to this spring. Helmenstine works as a health care rate analyst in the Bureau of Rate Setting, Division of Medicaid Services at the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, where he conducts analysis and program improvement for the state’s Medicaid waiver program.

Sam Landowski (MPA ’23) started a new position at the Wisconsin Department of Administration as a grants specialist for the Wisconsin Relief Fund. In this role, he will work with organizations across the state – ranging from small childcare centers to hospital networks – as the state continues to recover economically from the effects of COVID-19. While at the La Follette School, Landowski worked as a project assistant under La Follette School Director Susan Webb Yackee. He compiled a database of all federal rules and regulations under the authority of the Affordable Care Act as well as other research related to state regulatory authority.

Katherine Rushmann (certificate in public policy ’23) started a new role in September as an intern for Rep. Mark Pocan in the U.S. House of Representatives. Previously, Rushmann worked as a federal relations intern with the Trust for Public Land, where she gained experience with federal grants, lobbying, and legislative research. She received bachelor’s degrees in political science and psychology from UW–Madison in 2023.

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