Vanderbilt's First and Only Nonpartisan Political Journal

Vanderbilt Political Review

Vanderbilt's First and Only Nonpartisan Political Journal

Vanderbilt Political Review

Vanderbilt's First and Only Nonpartisan Political Journal

Vanderbilt Political Review

Meet the Staff

VPR Editorial Board 2019-2020


Editorial Board


Grace Adcox, Editor-in-Chief

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Grace is a senior in the College of Arts and Sciences, pursuing a double major in Political Science and Asian Studies. As a Nashville native, she can most often be found in local coffeeshops writing about and researching refugees and immigration. Outside of VPR, she conducts research for the Latin American Public Opinion Project and the Research on Conflict and Collective Action Lab. She is the Editor-in-Chief of Vanderbilt Political Review, and she is grateful for the opportunity to work with her talented staff and dedicated editorial board.


Catherine KvamDeputy Editor-in-Chief

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Catherine Kvam is a senior and Deputy Editor in Chief for VPR. Previously, Kvam served as a Senior Editor after joining the staff as a contributor in 2016. She is interested in social justice topics and international affairs.




Alejandro MonzonDeputy Editor-in-Chief

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Alejandro is a senior in the College of Arts & Science majoring in Public Policy with a concentration in International Conflict Mitigation and pursuing a minor in American Government. He has conducted on-the-ground research in Sarajevo and is a research assistant at the Research on Conflict and Collective Action (ROCCA) Lab. Outside of VPR, Alejandro is also the treasurer for the Alexander Hamilton Society.



Jamie Jacobson, Managing Director

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Jamie Jacobson is a senior from Denver, Colorado majoring in Public Policy Studies. Jamie developed her love for politics as a high school speech and debate nerd. She is most interested in domestic policy and politics, especially health care policy and public health advocacy. Jamie also serves as a member of Speaker’s Committee at Vanderbilt. In her free time, Jamie enjoys reading The Atlantic and baking cakes, cookies, and other pastries (always from scratch).


Drew PerezOnline Director & Senior Editor

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Drew is a sophomore from Upper Saddle River, New Jersey, majoring in Public Policy Studies. On campus, he is a member of Delta Sigma Pi and a contributor to the Vanderbilt Hustler sports section. Drew enjoys reading Nate Silver and playing with his bernedoodle puppy, Tess.



Eric Asen, Senior Editor

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Eric is a junior from Cary, Illinois majoring in Political Science and Economics. He is particularly passionate about foreign affairs and works for the Research on Conflict and Collective Action Lab and the Latin American Public Opinion Project at Vanderbilt. In his free time, Eric enjoys playing foosball, jamming to music, and running his beekeeping business.


Naveen Krishnan, Senior Editor

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Naveen Krishnan is a senior triple majoring in Neuroscience, Sociology, and MHS from Orlando, FL. He is primarily focused in areas surrounding international affairs and human rights, writing his senior theses on the intersection of marginalized identities, terrorism, and healthcare. Outside of VPR, Naveen is a coxswain for the Vanderbilt Rowing Team, enjoys creating 3D origami, and watches most of the gritty crime dramas on television. After graduation he will be working as a consultant with BCG.


Roshan Natarajan, Senior Editor

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Roshan Natarajan is a sophomore from Memphis, Tennessee who is majoring in Political Science. His passion for politics started after he met President Jimmy Carter at a Habitat for Humanity build site in his hometown. He is interested in local politics and the American judiciary. In his free time, you may find him watching Arsenal soccer matches or eating at AVO.





Danny Harris 

Danny is a Senior from Memphis, TN majoring in Philosophy and Political Science. He is active in leadership positions at KA and Vanderbilt College Republicans.





Ben Lackner

Ben Lackner is a senior from Buffalo, New York who is studying Political Science and History. When he is not studying or writing for VPR, he enjoys watching Buffalo sports and reading. Additionally, he plays for Vanderbilt’s club hockey team, is a member of Vanderbilt Student Government, and is involved in Greek Life.




Joe Lovinger

Joe is a senior from Purchase, New York double majoring in English and Political Science. Outside of VPR, Joe is the founder and chairman of the Vanderbilt Student Library Committee and a member of the prose staff for the Vanderbilt Review. He is particularly interested in the interaction between American politics, popular culture, and media.




Palmer Montalbano

Palmer Montalbano is a junior from New Orleans, Louisiana planning on double majoring in Political Science and Communications. He was inspired to write after witnessing the chaotic presidential election filled with false news stories and hopes to bring quality news stories to the Vanderbilt community. He is Vice President of a local New Orleans non-profit, Hams For Fams. He also writes poetry in his free time.




Ram Reddy

Ram is a senior from Upland, CA majoring in History. His political interests include geopolitics, nationalist and ethnic conflicts, the military in terms of foreign policy, and civil liberties/constitutional originality. In addition to writing for the Vanderbilt Political Review, he competes on the Vanderbilt Trapshooting Team, is the managing editor of the Vanderbilt Historical Review. In his spare time, he is a movie buff and gearhead.



Keshav Kundassery

Keshav is a junior majoring in Neuroscience and Philosophy. Outside of writing for VPR, he is a Commons RA, co-founded Vanderbilt Effective Altruism, and is planning to attend medical school after college. Outside of work, he enjoys reading and listening to 60’s rock music.




Gavin Yuan

Gavin is a senior Political Science/Medicine Health and Society double major from Fair Lawn, New Jersey. He is interested in how international occurrences affect local communities and is currently on the Pre-med track. In his free time, he enjoys traveling and meeting new people.




Rebecca Brisman

Rebecca is a senior from Armonk, New York majoring in Medicine, Health, and Society, and minoring in Biology. She is on the pre-veterinary track, and is very passionate about her love for animals. Her political interests include social justice topics and environmentalism. Outside of VPR, she is a member of TAP, where she tutors children from North Nashville. She enjoys the outdoors, hiking, swimming, and scuba diving.




Tony Owusu

Tony Owusu is a sophomore from Alexandria, VA majoring in Biomedical Engineering on the pre-med track. He is interested in issues that affect Vanderbilt students as well as minority groups across the world.






Stephen Reisner

Katie Ward

Eric Ponce

Eric is a sophomore hailing from Dallas, Texas. Pursuing a double major in Philosophy and English, Eric can most often be found reading long novels or losing himself in thought about said novels. As a contributor to VPR, Eric hopes to add his voice to the growing chorus of active citizenship on campus.




Kate Weaver

Kate is a senior from Louisville majoring in Political Science and European Studies. After college and law school, she is planning on eventually teaching and practicing immigration/asylum law. Outside of VPR you can find her working on the exec board for College Dems and Women in Government, hiking, embroidering, or talking about cheese.



Jacques Friedman

Jacques is a senior history major and political science minor from Dallas, Texas. He is interested in Middle Eastern politics, stemming from having family in the region. Jacques enjoys traveling to politically relevant countries, including Cuba, Tunisia, Israel, and Russia.


Will Fritzler

Will is a sophomore from beautiful Portland, Oregon passionate about politics, writing, architecture, and sports. He enjoys basketball, the Pacific Ocean, and indulging his sweet tooth. Studying political science, Will is particularly interested in the presidency and technology in politics.




Jai Bansal 

Jai Bansal is a sophomore from Short Hills, New Jersey, majoring in economics and mathematics. His political interests include immigration, second amendment rights, and drug policy.  Outside of VPR, Jai is a member of the Zeta Beta Tau fraternity and coaches a high school debate program located in Massachusetts. He is interested in attending law school after he graduates.
Aiyappa Bollera, or Appa to his friends, is a senior from Edison, New Jersey, majoring in Political Science and Economics & History. He is the President of the Vanderbilt College Democrats, as well as a passionate member of the Democratic Socialists of America. He is an avid movie lover, Carolina Panthers and Los Angeles Lakers fan, and a legally ordained minister.

Emma Claire Geitner

Donald Hall

Donald, or D.J., is a sophomore from Lake City, Florida planing on majoring in Political Science along with minors in History and Russian Studies. When not watching college football, UFC, or YouTube movie reviews, he can be found hosting prospective students with Dore for a Day, working at the Pub, or attending a political convention. His interests include questioning the role of government in our lives, the evolution of party politics, and political theory.



Reed is a senior from Savannah, TN majoring in Medicine, Health, and Society with a minor in Political Science. He became interested in politics during his freshman year of college because of the 2016 election. His main interests include health policy and the judicial process. He is involved with his fraternity, Lambda Chi Alpha, both locally and internationally. Reed hopes to become a lawyer after graduation and run for office soon after.




Ben Noon

Ben is a senior majoring in political science and minoring in Asian studies. He is originally from Towson, Maryland. As the president of the Alexander Hamilton Society at Vanderbilt, Ben focuses on writing about international affairs and American foreign policy for VPR.


Rachael Osman

Rachael is a junior from Miami, Florida. She is double majoring in Political Science and Spanish with a Business minor. Her interests focus primarily on international politics as she spent the summer interning for a foreign policy think tank in Israel and participates in the European Horizons chapter at Vandy.




Kyle Weil

Kyle is a senior majoring in Economics and HOD. He is very active in the social impact sector, currently working at the Nashville Wine Auction non-profit. Kyle has been in VPR for 4 years and specializes in writing economics-centered articles.

Jessica Barker

Jessica Barker is a freshman in the College of Arts & Sciences. She is particularly interested in women’s issues and local politics, and has written for independent feminist publications for the past several years voicing her opinion about these issues. In her free time, she likes to garden and bake.




Jacob Hale

Jacob is a freshman from Austin, Texas seeking majors in Political Science and History and a minor in Spanish. He is especially interested in domestic political and legal issues and hopes to attend law school after Vanderbilt. During his free time, he enjoys reading presidential biographies and following sports.




Ronnie Cattier

Ronnie is an exchange student from Paris, France completing his senior year in Nashville. He is majoring in Politics and Government, with a focus on Euro-American relations. Outside the Vanderbilt Political Review, he is involved in European Politics and in Dutch Politics. His country of origin is the Netherlands.




Ali Romines

Ali is a sophomore from Memphis, TN majoring in neuroscience and hoping to research autism spectrum disorder (ASD). She is also passionate about creating a more inclusive environment for individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities. Outside of VPR, she works on the exec board for Autism Speaks, dances for VUDM as part of the moral committee, and teaches kids about science through VSVS.




Sophia Yan

Sophia Yan is a freshman from Shenzhen, China majoring in Human & Organizational Development (HOD) with a concentration in international leadership and minoring in art. She is particularly interested in the impact of education policy on economic development and social mobility in different countries. In her free time, she likes to scout locations for photography, pat cats at local cat cafes, and watch thriller movies.



Samuel Frank

Samuel Frank is a junior majoring in mathematics who has been published in several think-tanks and newsletters. He mostly enjoys writing about the economy as well as applied economics. He transferred from the University of Rochester after his sophomore year, and he plans on working in finance after graduation.




Jin Young Heo

Jin is a junior from Lafayette, California majoring in Public Policy with a concentration in Social Policy. He transferred from University of California, San Diego where he was a sociology major and political science minor. Jin is particularly interested in criminal justice and education reform. In his free time, he enjoys playing tennis for Vanderbilt’s club tennis team and listening to music.




Chloe Hall

Chloe Hall is a freshman from Louisville, KY who is majoring in Public Policy Studies. She is primarily interested in researching comprehensive policy solutions to structural issues such as affordable housing and predatory lending, as well as better understanding international affairs. Outside of VPR, she enjoys reading the news, movie reviews, and the occasional Clickhole article.




Alex Stoneman

Alex Stoneman is a freshman from Boardman, Ohio majoring in Biomedical and Chemical Engineering and minoring in Chemistry. He is interested in all kinds of domestic policy and foreign affairs. In his free time, he likes music, trivia, and riding the roller coaster of Cleveland sports.




Amanda Ruzumna

Amanda is a freshman from Scarsdale, NY majoring in Political Science with a possible minor in Business. She is very interested in social justice, law, and public policy. Outside of VPR, she is a writer for the Vanderbilt Hustler, a member of the Vanderbilt Women’s Club Soccer team, and a member of the Community Engagement committee for Women in Government. She also enjoys skiing, running, reading, and hiking.




Rahan Arasteh

Rahan is a freshman born in Tehran, Iran, before moving to Irvine, CA in 2008. He is pursuing majors in Political Science and Human and Organizational Development, with a minor in Spanish. He is passionate about Iranian international and U.S. domestic affairs. After college, he hopes to go to law school and eventually move into politics as a candidate. In his free-time, he enjoys playing strategy video games and watching soccer.



Isabella Randle

Isabella is a sophomore from Tomball, Texas, double-majoring in Political Science and Philosophy. She has lived in Indonesia, Nigeria, and Vietnam, and loves to learn and write about countries and cultures outside the US. Isabella is also passionate about women’s rights, the environment, and systematic inequality. In her free time she loves to cook, hike, paint, and try new things.




Dominique Greene

Dominique Greene is a freshman from Birmingham, AL majoring in computer engineering. She is most interested in computer science and photography. Her political interests include social justice topics and liberalism, and she is also a committee member for Vanderbilt’s NAACP chapter and WIC (women in computing).




Mark Graff

Mark is a freshman in the College of Arts and Sciences. He plans on majoring in Political Science, with possible minors in Communication Studies or History. Mark is interested in law and politics, and hopes to be a JAG (military lawyer). He is a club officer on the Vandy Club Swim Team and President of the best house on campus: Memorial House.



Holly Deng

Xinyi (Holly) is a sophomore from China, pursuing a double major in Political Science and Economics. She is most interested in international relations and is a research assistant at the Research on Conflict and Collective Action Lab. She enjoys outdoors, hiking, and rock climbing.




Musa Subramaniam

Musa is a junior majoring in Economics and History with a minor in Political Science. His interests include social movements, geopolitics, and political theory. In his spare time, he enjoys reading, listening to podcasts, and watching movies.

Amy Zhang

Amy is a freshman from Beijing, China, planning to major in Political Science and Economics. As an international student who has lived abroad in various different countries, she takes particular interest in foreign affairs. In her spare time, she enjoys trying out new restaurants in Nashville, reading, and listening to music.




Tanya Tejani

Tanya is a sophomore from Dallas, TX majoring in Political Science, Economics, and Environmental Sociology. She is interested in environmental law and justice on both a local and global scale. Outside of VPR, Tanya is also on exec for Women in Government, is an Honor Council member, and is a part of the Green Fund Committee.



Tejas Ogale

Tejas is a freshman from Bolingbrook, Illinois majoring in Economics and Physics. He is passionate about a variety of sports, including football (American and association), tennis, and basketball, and enjoys writing about national political issues, especially regarding the second amendment, government mandates, and race and/or gender issues.



Udit Malik

Udit is a first-year international student from New Delhi, India, pursuing a major in Computer Science and minors in Russian and Philosophy. He is primarily focused on studying modern imperialism, critical theory, workers’ rights, and the effect of corporate interests on the media. On campus, Udit is the Public Relations Chair of Gillette House and a passionate proponent of free, open source software and in his free time, he can be found jamming to The Strokes or cheering for Manchester United.



Josh Knell

Josh Knell is a sophomore from Sacramento, California majoring in Political Science with dual concentrations in American Government and International Relations. He is particularly interested in US elections and the presidency, and plans on attending law school after graduation. Outside of VPR, Josh spends his time working with the Office of Government Documents, Vanderbilt Hillel, and supporting the San Francisco 49ers.



Warren Gignac

Warren is a Freshman from San Antonio, Texas studying Political Science and Economics. Warren is most interested in domestic policy, especially surrounding social justice issues and labor. In his spare time, Warren enjoys playing lacrosse, scrolling through Twitter, and listening to music.




Daniel Gulotta

Daniel Gulotta is a junior in the College of Arts & Sciences majoring in Political Science and minoring in Communication Studies. A lifelong New Yorker with a passion for public policy, Daniel has always been interested in the expression of political news and opinions.




Netra Rastogi

Netra is a sophomore from Louisville, KY, studying Medicine, Health, and Society with minors in Spanish and Arabic. She is most interested in foreign policy, with a particular focus on issues of immigration and foreign intervention. Outside of VPR, Netra enjoys dancing with VIDA and talking about her four dogs.




Brogan Dice

Brogan is a sophomore from Mount Sterling, Kentucky majoring in Political Science. Brogan has particular interest in environmental studies, international human rights, and classic film.





Ally Sewell

Ally is a freshman from Cleveland, Ohio majoring in political science and is on the pre-medicine track with a possible minor in Chinese. Outside of VPR, she is involved in Next Steps, a member of the Environmental Committee, and working to get her EMR certification. She is interested in international relations and social justice.




Robert DeSana







Javier Mundul







Sael Soni

Sael is a junior from Madison, Wisconsin majoring in Chemistry and Economics with a minor in Latin American Studies. Outside VPR, he is active with Vanderbilt Debate Team, Vanderbilt Projectx: Bridges, ALFPA, and working as an undergraduate research assistant at LAPOP.




Riley Black

Logan Cromeens

Aditya Gokhale

Dylan Hanson

Jake Keating

Zoe Light

Tulasi Iyengar

Karim Oliver

Sam Sayegh

Masha Sedunova

Ashley Zhu

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Meet the Staff