Expert Profile

Will Marshall
Progressive Policy Institute

Will Marshall is President and Founder of the Progressive Policy Institute (PPI), a center for policy innovation in Washington, D.C. Established in 1989, PPI's mission is to modernize progressive politics and governance for the 21st century. PPI brings a spirit of radical pragmatism, grounded in the unifying principles of the American creed, to the nation's deeply polarized political debates. Its signature policy innovations and priorities include national service, public charter schools, cap and trade markets for carbon, clean energy, affordable health care for all citizens, fiscal discipline, and progressive tax reform, among others.

Called "Bill Clinton's idea mill," PPI's policy analysis and proposals were the source for many of the "New Democrat" themes that figured prominently in national politics during the 1990s. The Institute also has been integral to the spread of "Third Way" thinking to center-left parties in Europe and elsewhere. Marshall serves on the board of Policy Network, an international think tank launched by Tony Blair to promote progressive policy ideas throughout the democratic world.

He is editor of several books, most recently With All Our Might: A Progressive Strategy for Defeating Jihadism and Defending Liberty (Rowman & Littlefield, 2006). Marshall also edited Building the Bridge: 10 Big Ideas to Transform America (Roman & Littlefield, 1997) and co-edited Mandate for Change (Berkley Books, 1992), PPI's best-selling policy blueprint for President Clinton's first term. His articles have appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times and many other newspapers, as well as The American Interest, The American Prospect, and other policy-oriented journals.

Marshall also serves on the Washington, D.C. Public Charter School Board, which oversees 54 innovative "public charter schools" serving nearly 22,000 students in the nation's capital.

In 1985, Marshall helped to found the Democratic Leadership Council, serving as its first Policy Director.

Marshall's previous campaign and political experience includes posts as press secretary, spokesman and speechwriter for the 1984 United States Senate campaign of former North Carolina Governor Jim Hunt, speechwriter and policy analyst for the late U.S. Representative Gillis Long of Louisiana, Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus; and, spokesman and speechwriter in the 1982 U.S. Senate campaign of former Virginia Lt. Governor Dick Davis.

Marshall is a 1975 graduate of the University of Virginia, where he received his B.A. in English and History.

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