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IGPA History

Leadership

IGPA’s leadership team uses their experience and expertise in the policy world to lift the work of scholars from across the University of Illinois System.

David Merriman

Interim Director

David Merriman is Stukel Presidential Professor at the Univ. of Illinois at Chicago.  Since 2010, Merriman has held several leadership positions in UIC’s College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs, including interim dean and associate dean for faculty affairs, as well as chair of the Department of Economics within the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. He also served as associate director at IGPA for three years.

Merriman has a national and international reputation for his work in public finance and urban economics and has published many scholarly articles on those topics. His areas of expertise include state tax policies, property taxes and business taxation. He has an interest in helping state and local governments develop fair and efficient mechanisms to raise revenue and implement public policy.

At IGPA Merriman directs the U of Illinois’ Fiscal Futures Project, which monitors the fiscal condition of the State of Illinois. Much of his current research deals with the impact of the rise in Work From Home.

Professor Merriman was appointed as the interim director of IGPA in May of 2023.

David Merriman

Senior Staff

Brenda Hixson

Brenda Hixson

Director for Strategic Operations

Rene Dunnam

Rene Dunnam

Senior Coordinator

Alyssa Cooper

Alyssa Cooper

Senior Coordinator

Kyle Peebles

Kyle Peebles

Senior Coordinator

Kristen Chandler

Kristen Chandler

Senior Coordinator

Staff

Belinda Burgess
Belinda Burgess
Job description Project Development Specialist
Phone 312-996-6188
Email bburge1@uillinois.edu
Becky Blythe
Becky Blythe
Job description Office Manager
Phone 217-333-3340
Email rblythe@uillinois.edu
June Luna
June Luna
Job description Accountant
Phone 217-244-1308
Email juneluna@uillinois.edu
Sue Grace Rominger
Sue Grace Rominger
Job description Edgar Fellows Coordinator
Email sgrace@uillinois.edu
Alana Bennett
Alana Bennett
Job description Extra Help
Phone 217-300-5618
Email bennett@uillinois.edu

Learn More

IGPA is the People’s Policy Think Tank.

The University of Illinois System is a trusted source for top-quality research and expertise drawn from all three universities. IGPA ensures that the work scholars do matters and has real-world impact.

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IGPA supports necessary, data-driven, well-informed policymaking that improves people’s lives.

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IGPA supports necessary, data-driven, well-informed policymaking that improves people’s lives.

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