Executive Board

Faculty Advisor: Professor Flagg Taylor teaches in the fields of Political Philosophy and Constitutional Law. His courses include: Introduction to Political Philosophy, The French Liberal Tradition, Capitalism and Its Critics, Dissident Political Thought, Rousseau’s Political Philosophy, and Constitutional Conflicts: Executive Power. He is the editor of The Great Lie: Classic and Recent Appraisals of Ideology and Totalitarianism (ISI Books, 2011) and co-author of The Contested Removal Power, 1789-2010 (University of Kansas Press, fall of 2013). His current project is a book on the political thought and experiences of Czech anti-Communist dissidents and he continues to make trips to the Czech Republic for interviews. You can find one of these interviews here. He is an avid tennis player and fan and lives in upstate New York with his wife, Professor Natalie Taylor, and his two children.

Acting Co-Presidents:

Abby%20Outterson-8Abby Outterson is a sophomore at Skidmore, committed to dabbling and dabbling in commitment. She would like to double-major in trees and traditions, and is hoping the Environmental Studies and Anthropology departments don’t mind being oversimplified in online bios. She enjoys hip-hop yoga, brightly colored shoes, feeling intimidated, staring at her well-stocked bookshelf, and muffins. For her the Franklin Forum serves to fill the voids she feels this semester because of her lack of both an English class and enough chances to dress up.


Lauren Berry-Kagan, a first-year student from Seattle, WA, joined the Franklin Forum out of her deep drive to discuss Big Ideas. Academically, she attends classes in history, government, Spanish, and math. Extracurricularly, her passions range from intersectional feminism to traveling, from backpacking to prison movies from the late thirties, and from queer politics to yoga.

President (abroad): Connor Grant-Knight is currently a junior at Skidmore. A Government major concentrating in political theory, he is interested in the study of human freedom, classical and modern republicanism, and the functions of institutions in society. His favorite political thinkers are Montesquieu and Tocqueville. When there is no snow on the ground, Connor teaches group tennis lessons to kids and adults.

Vice President (abroad): Ben Polsky is a junior majoring in History and Government. He is interested how different academic disciplines complement each other. Currently, he is studying the ideological framework and practical application of conservative thought on modern politics through the perspectives of both Government and History. Outside of his academic interests, he is a huge movie buff.

Treasurer: Matthew Marani is a sophomore at Skidmore possibly majoring in History or International Affairs. He is interested in the study of political thought as a means of expanding his understanding of historical events and international incidents. He is also curious in American domestic policy in the fields of infrastructure investment and welfare spending. Non-academically, Matthew is involved in the Skidmore Chorus and is an avid enthusiast of film and photography.

Webmaster: Marcella Jewell, a junior at Skidmore, is from Binghamton, NY, but now lives in Boston, MA. As a Government major, she concentrates on two tremendously important areas of study: women and healthcare policy. Marcella enjoys studying in particular the impact of influential female leaders; healthcare policies around the world; and how the U.S. government could restructure the current healthcare system into one better deserving of that name. Outside of academics, she takes pride in her healthy way of life. She is an avid runner, Bikram yoga practitioner, health enthusiast, and the founder of This Skid Kid Grills, a healthy living inspired food blog. Marcella plans to merge her passion for wellness with her interest in leadership by completing an MBA in Business and then progressively reforming the healthcare industry. As one might tell from her title, she also enjoys creating websites and learning programming languages such as HTML5 and Python since she likes to see the working result of her labors.


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