Parents’ Association Resident Scholar
In a program that spans more than 30 years, the Parents’ Association sponsors Resident Scholars from a wide range of academic and professional disciplines to engage with Upper School students in meaningful ways. Scholars present at assemblies, run workshops, facilitate discussions. and more.
2022–23 Resident Scholar:
Eric H. Holder Jr.
Eric H. Holder Jr. is a civil rights leader who is chairman of the National Democratic Redistricting Committee. He served as the eighty-second attorney general of the United States, the first African American to hold that office.
Mr. Holder is a Partner at the law firm of Covington & Burling LLP. He advises clients on complex investigations and litigation matters, including those that are international in scope and involve significant regulatory enforcement issues and substantial reputational concerns. Mr. Holder, who was a partner at Covington from 2001 to 2009, rejoined the firm after serving for six years as Attorney General.
Mr. Holder served as Attorney General from February 2009 to April 2015. As the third longest serving Attorney General in U.S. history, Mr. Holder is an internationally recognized leader across a broad range of regulatory enforcement, criminal justice, and national security issues. In 2014, Time magazine named Mr. Holder to its list of 100 Most Influential People, noting that he had “worked tirelessly to ensure equal justice.”
Including his tenure as Attorney General, Mr. Holder has served in government for more than thirty years, having been appointed to various positions requiring U.S. Senate confirmation by Presidents Obama, Clinton and Reagan.
About Eric Holder’s most recent book, Our Unfinished March: The Violent Past and Imperiled Future of the Vote — A History, A Crisis, A Plan:
[www.penguinrandomhouse.com] A brutal, bloody, and at times hopeful history of the vote; a primer on the opponents fighting to take it away; and a playbook for how we can save our democracy before it’s too late—from the former U.S. Attorney General on the front lines of this fight.
Voting is our most important right as Americans—“the right that protects all the others,” as Lyndon Johnson famously said when he signed the Voting Rights Act—but it’s also the one most violently contested throughout U.S. history. Since the gutting of the act in the landmark Shelby County v. Holder case in 2013, many states have passed laws restricting the vote. After the 2020 election, President Trump’s effort to overturn the vote has evolved into a slow-motion coup, with many Republicans launching an all-out assault on our democracy. The vote seems to be in unprecedented peril.
But the peril is not at all unprecedented. America is a fragile democracy, Eric Holder argues, whose citizens have only had unfettered access to the ballot since the 1960s. He takes readers through three dramatic stories of how the vote was won: first by white men, through violence and insurrection; then by white women, through protests and mass imprisonments; and finally by African Americans, in the face of lynchings and terrorism. Next, he dives into how the vote has been stripped away since Shelby—a case in which Holder was one of the parties. He ends with visionary chapters on how we can reverse this tide of voter suppression and become a true democracy where every voice is heard and every vote is counted.
Full of surprising history, intensive analysis, and actionable plans for the future, this is a powerful primer on our most urgent political struggle from one of the country’s leading advocates.
Past Resident Scholars
Jal Mehta ’95
Jal Mehta ’95 is a professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE). His research explores the role of different forms of knowledge in tackling major social and political problems, particularly problems of human improvement. Mehta has also written extensively on what it would take to improve American education, with a particular focus on the professionalization of teaching. Mehta joined the HGSE faculty in 2008, and was named an emerging scholar by the American Educational Research Association in 2014. The author, co-author, or co-editor of four books, Mehta’s most recent, In Search of Deeper Learning: The Quest to Remake the American High School (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2019), seeks to identify where and how powerful learning is happening in schools today.
Dr. Leana Wen
Dr. Leana Wen is the Commissioner of Health for the City of Baltimore. An emergency physician and patient and community advocate, she leads the Baltimore City Health Department (BCHD). BCHD’s responsibilities include maternal and child health, youth wellness, school health, senior services, animal control, restaurant inspections, emergency preparedness, STI/HIV treatment, and acute and chronic disease prevention. Two weeks prior to her assembly at Park, Dr. Wen was named the next president of Planned Parenthood.
Dr. Cathy O’Neil
Dr. O’Neil is the author of the New York Times bestselling Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy. She made the switch from academia (professor at Barnard College) to the private sector, working as a quantitative analyst for the hedge fund D.E. Shaw, and then for RiskMetrics. She left finance in 2011 and started working as a data scientist in the New York start-up scene, building models that predicted people’s purchases and clicks. Dr. O’Neil wrote Doing Data Science in 2013, and launched the Lede Program in Data Journalism at Columbia University in 2014.
Matthew B. Crawford
Matthew B. Crawford is an American writer and research fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture at the University of Virginia. The author of Shop Class as Soulcraft, the New York Times Bestseller, Matthew is now a contributing editor at The New Atlantis – A Journal of Science and Technology. He is also a motorcycle mechanic.
Cathy A. Small
Cathy A. Small, Ph.D., Professor in the Department of Anthropology at Northern Arizona University, spoke about the often unconscious ways that culture shapes us and the breakthroughs in insight and perception that can happen in recognizing cultural assumptions.
2012–2013 — Centennial Scholar
Dr. David Perkins
Dr. Perkins, Senior Professor of Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, is a “teacher of teachers” and is widely known for his work as co-founder of Project Zero. Perkins devoted one day of his three-day residency to each of the divisions — Lower, Middle, and Upper School.
Professor of mathematics at UMBC and author (The Death of Vishnu — a novel long-listed for the 2001 Booker Prize and short-listed for the 2002 PEN/Faulkner Award — about social and religious tensions in India, The Age of Shiva, and “The Seven Circles.”
Malcolm Daniel ’74
Curator in Charge, Department of Photographs at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Madison Smartt Bell
Award-winning novelist, biographer, essayist, songwriter, and professor of English at Goucher College. He has written extensively, both fact and fiction, about the history of Haiti.
Dr. Ruth Faden
The Philip Franklin Wagley Professor of Biomedical Ethics and Executive Director of Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics and Senior Research Scholar at the Kennedy Institute of Ethics, Georgetown University. Dr. Faden is the author and editor of numerous books and articles on biomedical ethics and health policy. Research interests include bioethics and public policy; ethics and cellular engineering; ethics and neuroscience; ethics and bioterrorism; ethics, genetics and public policy; and research ethics; and justice.
Dr. Mario Livio
Adjunct professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy of the Johns Hopkins University and an astronomer at the Hubble Space Telescope Science Institute. His research interests include theoretical astrophysics, accretion into black holes, neutron stars and white dwarfs, supernova explosions, binary star evolution, and planetary nebula.
Josiah Bunting III
Author of The Lionheads, Ulysses S. Grant, an Education for Our Time, and All Loves Excelling, Vietnam veteran, scholar and Oxford graduate, who was president of Briarcliff and Hampden-Sydney colleges, superintendent of the Virginia Military Institute, and is now president of the Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation.
Pianist, conductor, and Andrew W. Mellon Chair in Piano at the Peabody Institute.
Pulitzer prize winning author of Parting the Waters (America’s Civil Rights Movement: Lasting Accomplishments and Unfinished Business).
Former Poet Laureate of Maryland, Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets, Distinguished Professor at St. Mary’s College of Maryland.
Documentary Filmmaker and Academy Award Winner in the Category of Documentary Short Subjects for King Gimp. Presentation: “The Voice of Documentary.”
Dr. Eva T. H. Brann
Tutor-St. John’s College, Annapolis, MD. Presentation: Ursala Le Guin’s story “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas.”
The Honorable Antonin Scalia
Associate Justice, Supreme Court of the United States. Presentation: “On Interpreting the Constitution.”
Distinguished nature photographer and teacher.
Dr. Robert Gallo
Professor and Director, Institute of Human Virology, University of Maryland.
Dr. Bill Puka
Professor of Philosophy, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
Dr. Leon Botstein
President of Bard College. Presentation: “The Future of the American High School.”
Dr. Bert Vogelstein
Professor of Oncology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Presentation: “Nature, Knowledge, and Neoplasia.”
Dr. Richard Rubenstein
Professor of Conflict Resolution and Public Affairs, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA. Presentation: “Conflict and Change in the Middle East: A Conflict Resolution Perspective.”
Resident Scholars Symposium
“Reconstructing the Curriculum” Dr. Sara Coulter, Professor of English, Coordinator of Curriculum Integration, Towson State University Dr. Paul Lauter, Professor of Literature, Trinity College, General Editor. Dr. Rhonda Williams, Assistant Professor, Economics, Afro-American Studies, University of Maryland, College Park.
Dr. Michael M. Shara
Deputy Chief, Science Computing and Research Support, Hubble Space Telescope Science Institute. Presentation: “Frontier Problems in Astronomy.”
Dr. Arnold S. Relman
Physician, educator, and editor of the New England Journal of Medicine. Presentation: “Medical Professional Ethics in a Commercialized Society.”
National Public Radio correspondent. Presentation: “The Secrets, Sins, and Successes of the American Media: An Insider’s Perspective.”
Maestro David Zinman
Music Director, The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. Presentation: “The Art of Listening.”
Dr. Elizabeth Minnich
Professor of Philosophy, Union of Experimenting Colleges and Universities. Presentation: “Being Good and Acting Well: A Philosopher Looks at the Conflicts Between Private Morality and Public Effectiveness.”
Dr. Alan Walker
Professor of Cell Biology and Anatomy, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Discipline: Anthropology. Presentation: “New Discoveries Related to Human Evolution.”
Dr. Nancy Weiss, ’61
Professor of History, Princeton University Presentation: “Turning Lincoln’s Picture to the Wall: The Shift of Blacks to the Democratic Party 1928-1940.”
Consultant dedicated to causes of environmental matters, civil liberties, and consumer protection. Presentation: “Do You Count?: The Effect of Grassroots Participation on the Socio-Political Outcome.”
Dr. Penelope Eckert
Assistant Professor, Department of Anthropology, University of Michigan. Presentation: “Adolescent Social Categories: The Development of Workers and Managers in a Suburban High School.”
Michael Tilson Thomas
Conductor, lecturer, recording artist.
Professor Ian McHarg
Chairman, Department of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning, University of Pennsylvania. Author of Design with Nature. Presentation: “Human Ecological Planning.”
Dr. Lawrence Wylie
C. Douglas Dillon Professor of the Civilization of France, Harvard University. Presentation: “What is Body Language? A Discussion of Cultural Problems in Non-Verbal Communication.”
Producing Director of Arena Stage in Washington, D.C. Presentation: “The Stage-A Special Place.”