Dr. Lisa Parshall

Professor of Political Science

An inaugural Public Policy Fellow at the Rockefeller Institute of Government, Dr. Lisa Parshall is drawn to federal, state, and local politics and public policy issues. She is an active scholar on these topics, and is frequently found advocating for voter education in the community. In the classroom, Parshall explores the world of politics with students through a real-world perspective that oftentimes pulls from the ever-changing political arena and in what promises to be an active election year ahead.

What sparked your interest in political science, government, and public policy?

I started my undergraduate career as a secondary education history major but quickly found that the courses I enjoyed most were in political science. The faculty at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse encouraged me to consider pursuing a doctorate in political science, which combined my interest in teaching with my love of law and politics.

Describe your experience as an inaugural Richard P. Nathan Public Policy Fellow at the Rockefeller Institute of Government (RIG).

This honor was especially meaningful because I have always been inspired by Dr. (Richard) Nathan’s work and respect the reputation of the RIG as a preeminent research center for New York State policy studies. Becoming a fellow has allowed me to work directly with scholars and staff who are experts in this field.

How do you incorporate current events into teaching political science in the classroom?

It is impossible not to incorporate current events into teaching political science. I encourage students to follow the news and will highlight specific events that connect the course material to the “real-world.” Following current political news allows students to connect the principles and concepts to the world around them.

What do you like most about teaching students at Daemen?

I particularly like that our classrooms are small enough to allow us to get to know students individually and that we can see our students progressing over the course of their time at Daemen. It is especially gratifying to see so many of our majors go on to successful careers. We have talked about needing a wall of fame in our department to honor the many accomplishments of our students.

What are your research interests and your most recent published works?

Most recently, my co-author and I received a contract for a book on Trump and the administrative state. I’m also working on my soloauthored book on village government entitled, “In Local Hands,” which looks at the formation and dissolution of local governments in New York State. I’m also watching the 2020 nominating process as part of my continued interest on presidential nominating reforms.