Our Leadership
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Beth Wang

Beth is a third year majoring in Economics and Public Policy. She joined PDI in 2020 as a first year involved in the Ban the Box Illinois criminal justice project as well as a research group focused on environmental subsidy policies. Beth became part of the Media Committee and became Vice President of Media and Communication, working to fine tune PDI’s media strategy and online presence. This year as co-President with Morty, Beth is excited to work to advance PDI’s mission, produce quality policy research, and help new researchers gain relevant skills through being involved in the organization. On campus, Beth is also involved with the UChicago Institute of Politics on the career development team.

President

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Morten Lee

Morten is a fourth year Chemistry major from Wisconsin with an enduring interest in policy and advocacy. He joined PDI in 2019, and began as a researcher investigating expansion of social worker roles in student trauma prevention and mental health. Serving on leadership last year, he focused on implementing membership education and establishing organization partnerships. This year, he hopes to continue to uphold PDI’s mission of collaborative inquiry and support its talented members. In his free time, he enjoys ultimate frisbee and playing the cello.

President

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Lily Song

Lily is a third year Sociology & Political Science major from Shenzhen, China. She joined PDI in the Fall of 2021, and began as a researcher analyzing the barriers to housing in Illinois and across the nation. Lily has previously been involved in grassroot feminist movements and social work in China. As the VP of Media and Outreach, Lily hopes to develop media strategy & increase the exposure for PDI’s members and future projects with the media committee. Outside of PDI, Lily is also involved in the Chicago Journal of Sociology (CJS) and serves on The Office of the Provost’s Sexual Misconduct Student Advisory Board. In her free time, she enjoys listening to and playing classical music, meditating, and cooking with her friends.

Vice President of Media and Outreach

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Luke Kalaydjian

Luke is a third year majoring in Sociology and Public Policy with a concentration in Urban Studies. Luke joined PDI in the Winter of 2021 and has since worked on several projects, mostly focused on environmental issues. After one quarter with PDI, Luke also joined the Media Committee in order to implement a strategy to best amplify project results to relevant audiences. As PDI’s Vice-President of Finance and Operations, Luke is responsible for financial planning, maintaining PDI’s 501(c)(3) status, and big-picture goals. Outside of PDI, Luke is currently working with the Heartland Alliance on projects regarding human rights. Originally from Montréal, Québec, Luke also loves movies and playing the bass in his free time.

Vice President of Finance and Operations

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Jason Jacobs

Jason is a third year Mathematics with Specialization in Economics major from Davie, Florida. He joined PDI in the Fall of 2020. He has worked on and led many projects, mostly with a focus on healthcare. He loves working with numbers and is always eager to incorporate quantitative data into his projects. As Co-VP of Research, Jason hopes to ensure that PDI’s projects are interesting and impactful. Outside of PDI, Jason is involved in TAMID Group Consulting and the Trott Business Program. He also works in data science. In his free time, he enjoys exploring Chicago, multiple different types of exercise, and playing chess.

Co Vice President of Research

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Arushi Bansal

Arushi is a third year majoring in Economics and Political Science. She joined PDI in the fall of 2021, researching on environment-centered projects and working in the Media Committee. Arushi is excited to help expand the organizations PDI partners with, as well as streamline our research timeline to create more meaningful and substantive experiences for both our researchers and partners. Outside of PDI, Arushi has helped lead research projects that look into the impact of COVID-19 on education. In addition, she works closely with UChicago’s Institute of Politics to build alumni and community partnerships. In her free time, she loves going to the beach and exploring local cafes.

Co Vice President of Research

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Abby Adigun

Abby is a second year student majoring in economics and public policy. She joined the PDI community in the fall of 2021, and her first project focused on commercial corridors in Chicago and other cities in the United States. In the fall of her first year, Abby also led a research project concerning homelessness projects in the South Side of Chicago. Abby is excited to enter this new role to help build upon the recruitment and community efforts of PDI. Beyond the PDI world, Abby is actively involved with Pareto Solutions, the Phoenix Development Fund, and the Thangaraj house community. She is also a big fan of reality TV shows (Big Brother is her favorite), raving about how much she loves shrimp, and checking out the hidden gems of Chicago.

Co Vice President of Recruitment & Community Cohesion

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Anna Guzman

Anna is a third year majoring in Public Policy and Law, Letters, and Society. She joined PDI in her first year and worked on a research group investigating environmental subsidy policy. In her second year in PDI, Anna co-led a research team analyzing commercial corridor economic policy on the South Side of Chicago and was a member of the Media Committee. This year, as VP of Recruitment and Community Cohesion, Anna is excited to help everyone find a place to belong and feel welcome within the PDI research community. Outside of PDI, Anna is an active member of MUN and Moot Court. She also works with the UChicago Institute of Politics Speaker Series Program, researches legal and political legitimization within the Icelandic Constitution, and attempts to occasionally rock climb.

Co Vice President of Recruitment & Community Cohesion