Dan Schnur is a Professor at the University of California – Berkeley’s Institute of Governmental Studies, Pepperdine University’s Graduate School of Public Policy, and the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School of Communications, where he teaches courses in politics, communications and leadership. Dan has also taught at the John F. Kennedy School of Government’s Institute of Politics at Harvard University and George Washington University’s Graduate School of Political Management.
He is the founder of the USC/LA Times Statewide political poll and currently host a weekly webinar for the LA World Affairs Council Town Hall called “Politics in the Time of Coronavirus.” (www.lawac.org)
Previously, Dan worked on four presidential and three gubernatorial campaigns as one of California’s leading political strategists. He served as the national Director of Communications for the 2000 presidential campaign of U.S. Senator John McCain and was the chief media spokesman for California Governor Pete Wilson.
In 2010, Dan was appointed Chairman of the California Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC), where he implemented groundbreaking campaign finance disclosure requirements. Dan also was a founder and cochairman of the Voices of Reform project, the bipartisan statewide effort whose work laid the foundation for California’s landmark redistricting reform. After completing his FPPC term, Dan registered as a No Party Preference voter and launched Fixing California, an organization dedicated to campaign finance and political reform. In 2014, Dan ran for statewide office as a non-partisan candidate for California Secretary of State.
Dan has been an advisor to the William & Melinda Gates Foundation, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the Broad Education Foundation, the Pew Charitable Trusts, the James Irvine Foundation, the Public Policy Institute of California and the Stuart Foundation on a variety of political reform, K-12 education and college and workforce preparedness efforts.
Dan is an active community volunteer as well, serving as a board member of the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust, Junior State of America, the Pacific Council on International Policy, the Center for Asians United for Self-Empowerment (CAUSE) and as a senior advisor to the Hispanas Organized for Political Equality (HOPE) leadership training programs. He is the former Los Angeles director for the American Jewish Committee and serves as an advisor to the Los Angeles Jewish Federation. He is a member of the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs Senior Fellows program, where he mentors UCLA graduate students and advises them on their academic and professional goals.
Dan’s commentaries have appeared in several newspapers, including the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Sacramento Bee, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, and the New York Times. In addition, he has been an analyst and political commentator for CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, and National Public Radio.
Dan is a graduate of the American University in Washington, D.C. He and his wife Cecile Ablack, an international communications consultant and former Deputy Mayor of Los Angeles, live in LA.