Franklin D. Gilliam, Jr. was appointed Dean of the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs in September 2008. He is a longtime UCLA professor of public policy and political science. His research focuses on strategic communications, public policy, electoral politics, and racial and ethnic politics.
As Dean of the Luskin School, Gilliam raised a $50 million naming gift, and he now leads the school’s charge to redefine its critical advantage and transform its scholarly and practical influence with innovation and impact. Since launching UCLA Luskin’s strategic plan in October 2011 with such new initiatives as Global Public Affairs, Digital Cities, Social Justice and the Leadership Initiative, Dean Gilliam has focused on identifying society’s most pressing problems and establishing the School as a leader in addressing them.
Prior to his appointment as Dean, Gilliam served as the first-ever associate vice chancellor of community partnerships in the University of California system from 2002 to 2008. As vice chancellor, he championed UCLA’s civic engagement by supporting engaged scholarship and community collaborations to improve the quality of life in Los Angeles.
Gilliam’s research interests include strategic communications and its effects on shaping public policy; electoral politics; and racial and ethnic politics. He is the author of Farther to Go: Readings and Cases in African-American Politics (Harcourt Brace) and his work has been published in many leading academic journals. He is frequently interviewed or cited by national and international news outlets such as CNN, The New York Times, The Washington Post and the BBC.
Gilliam is a is a senior fellow with the FrameWorks Institute, where he has served as project director for the “Framing Race in America” project and has contributed to programs on health care, early child development, youth and rural issues. Gilliam also serves on the boards of the United Way of Greater Los Angeles and the Blue Shield of California Foundation Board.
Twice nominated for UCLA’s Luckman Distinguished Teaching Award, Gilliam has also taught at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Grinnell College and the University of Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, and was a Visiting Scholar at Brandeis University. In addition, he taught at Fisk University, Middle Tennessee State University, and with former Vice President Al Gore at Columbia University. Dr. Gilliam received his B.A. from Drake University, and his M.A. and Ph.D. in political science from the University of Iowa.