JAson Perry, JD: Director

Jason P. Perry is the Vice President for Government Relations at the University of Utah and has served in this capacity since January of 2011. In addition to this role, he began serving as Director of the Hinckley Institute of Politics on July 1, 2015.

Prior to his tenure at the U, Jason served as the Chief of Staff to Utah Governor Gary R. Herbert. Jason helped the Governor successfully navigate two challenging budget cycles and his first legislative session as well as achieving a landslide victory in the November 2010 election. 

A graduate of the S.J. Quinney College of Law at The University of Utah, Jason began his career working for the state Attorney General. A passionate advocate for protecting children, Jason helped launch the Internet Crimes Against Children Taskforce and received the FBI Director’s Award for distinguished service to the law enforcement community. He also served as a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney.

Following his service in the Attorney General’s office, Jason became an Administrative Judge at the state Department of Commerce where he quickly rose to the level of deputy director. While serving in this capacity, former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman, Jr. appointed Jason to serve as the Executive Director of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development, a cabinet level position. During his time at the helm of GOED he was instrumental in the recruitment and expansion of companies that bolstered the Utah economy and helped the state receive numerous national accolades including one of the Most Business Friendly States, Most Dynamic Economy, and Best Managed State.

Jason makes his home in Salt Lake City with his wife Mary Catherine and their four children.

Courtney H. McBeth, MS: Associate Director, Hinckley Institute

Courtney H. McBeth is Associate Director of the Hinckley Institute of Politics and oversees the Global Internship program and the academics of the HIP.  She has faculty appointments with Political Science and Social Work, and oversees the Hinckley’s internship courses. She teaches a global community-based research course for the College of Social Work. She has worked at the HIP since 2002 and has managed all aspects of the state, local, and national internship programs. Ms. McBeth is currently pursuing a Doctorate of Education in Higher Education Leadership at the University of Pennsylvania.  She graduated summa cum laude with an Master's in Education from the University of Utah with a thesis titled, “Civic Engagement: The Impact of Internships on Political Participation.”? She also graduated magna cum laude with a BA in Political Science and interned for University of Utah President Bernie Machen. Ms. McBeth was a member and captain of the University of Utah Women’s Soccer Team and was named to the Freshman All-American team and Academic All-West Region. Courtney is married to Mitch and has three boys.


Jayne Nelson: Associate Director

Jayne Nelson is the Associate Director of the Hinckley Institute of Politics where she manages the Hinckley Institute office, the Hinckley Forum Series, the Huntsman Seminar, and the finances of the institute. She has worked at the Hinckley Institute since 1988. Some of Ms. Nelson’s major responsibilities include coordinating all political speakers for the Hinckley Forums, organizing the Huntsman Seminar in Constitutional Government for Teachers, administering scholarships offered through the Hinckley Institute, and managing the operations of the administrative office.


Morgan Lyon Cotti, PhD: STATE Program Manager

Morgan joined the Hinckley Institute in May 2012 as Local Program Manager, after serving as Research Director for the Utah Foundation. She has worked as a Policy and Research Analyst at the Utah State Office of Planning and Budget, and as a Research Analyst for the Utah Office of Legislative Research and General Council. Morgan served as a U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee intern, and as a Page in the U.S. Senate. She has led humanitarian expeditions to Puca Cruz, Ecuador, and Keeraru, Ethiopia. Morgan graduated from the University of Utah with a bachelors degree in Political Science, from Brigham Young University with a Master’s of Public Policy, and received her PhD in Political Science from George Washington University. She is married to Geoff Cotti and has two children.



Gina Shipley, MPA: National Program Manager

Gina Shipley joined the Hinckley Institute as  the National Program Director in 2014. She oversees the national internship program and the academics of the DC program. Previous to joining the Hinckley, she worked for six years as the Director of the Office of Advising and Inclusion within the College of Social and Behavioral Science. She has extensive experience with the Hinckley Institute’s programs, both as a Hinckley student and during her time as a University of Utah student advocate. She is also a co-instructor of Ambassador Price’s Think Tank, co- instructor for the Capital Encounter Internship,  and oversees the Hinckley’s national internship courses. Ms. Shipley graduated with a Master of Public Administration from the University of Utah; her thesis explored the importance of internships and how they catalyze classroom knowledge.  She also graduated with a BA in History and Geography with a secondary education license from Brigham Young University. Gina  is married to David has three children, two of which graduated from the University of Utah this past year. 



Ellesse Balli is the Communications and Academic Coordinator for the Hinckley Institute of Politics.  She develops and oversees all media for the Institute including the website. She also writes and edits for the Institute’s various publications, coordinates media outreach, and is the teaching assistant for the Political Forum Series and Resident Scholar symposiums. Ellesse graduated from the University of Utah summa cum laude with an Honors Degree and a Bachelor of Arts in English. She pursued a Master of Education at the University of Utah in the Department of Instructional Design and Education Technology, where she studied innovative pedagogy. Formerly, Ellesse was Art Director for the Diplomatic Courier for which she served a Hinckley internship in 2009. She is married to Nathan Balli and has a little girl.



Anna solomon EdeLman: Outreach Coordinator 

Anna Solomon Edelman graduated from the University of Utah with a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies in 2013.  She graduated from the Master of Public Administration program at the University of Utah in August 2015 with an emphasis in nonprofit management and educational leadership.  Her master’s thesis explored the impact of partnerships among international non-governmental organizations. During her time in the MPA program, Anna also worked as a graduate assistant conducting research and facilitating workshops for University Neighborhood Partners. She has always been passionate about international relations and joined the Hinckley Institute in 2015 to assist with the global internship program. Anna has participated in various Hinckley internships, the highlight being her internship with Eagle Condor Humanitarian in Peru. 


Natalie Tippets: Executive Assistant

Natalie joined the Hinckley Institute of Politics in July of 2016 as Jason Perry’s Executive Assistant. She serves in this capacity at both the Hinckley Institute of Politics and in the Government Relations Office at the University of Utah. A native of Salt Lake, Natalie spent her formative years on the U campus while her parents were enrolled in classes. She would go on to graduate from the institution herself in 2007 with a Bachelor of Arts in History and again in 2014 with a Master of Science in Ancient History. In stereotypical fashion, Natalie enjoys the pursuit of knowledge, eating good food, and reading books about history. She makes her home in Millcreek City with her husband and their son.


Lisa Hawkins: Student Staffer

Lisa Hawkins is a junior pursuing an honors degree in political science as well as in communication with an emphasis on journalism and a bachelor of science in economics. Her political interest was piqued during a summer internship in the Governor’s Office. Lisa’s growing passion for politics and writing were furthered by her experience in both Resident Scholar symposiums. Formerly, Lisa has directed the political segment on the University’s cable broadcast, Newsbreak, and recently returned from an internship in New Delhi, India with the Maitri NGO.  Her goals after graduation are to attend a graduate program of international policy and affairs and enter the field of global development.



Gerrit Seymour is a senior majoring in Music and Middle Eastern Studies with a Turkish Language emphasis. He first got involved with the Hinckley Institute in the summer of 2014 when he did an international internship at The Center for Middle Eastern Strategic Studies in Ankara, Turkey. Since that initial involvement he has taken the Political Forum Series class, performed a local internship in Congressman Chris Stewart’s office, been a member of the Hinckley Journal of Politics’ editorial board, served as a Hinckley Student Ambassador, and completed an internship at the Department of Health and Human Services in Washington, DC. After graduation Gerrit plans on attending medical school focusing on pediatrics and global health.

Patricia Jones: Adjunct Instructor

Patricia Jones is the CEO of the Women’s Leadership Institute and an adjunct professor with the Hinckley Institute of Politics. Pat Jones co-founded Dan Jones and Associates where she served as Vice President and focused on qualitative research. Pat Jones is also a former member of the Utah State Senate. She represented District 4 from 20016-2014. During her time in the Utah Senate, she served as Minority Caucus Manager, Assistant Minority Leader, and Minority Leader. Prior to her time in the Senate, Jones served in the Utah House of Representatives from 2002-2006 where she was the Assistant Minority Whip. Jones received her B.S. in journalism from the University of Utah. She is married to Dan Jones. They have seven children.  

DAN JONES, PhD: adjunct instructor


Tim Chambless, PhD: Hinckley Academic Outreach Coordinator, Associate Professor Lecturer

Tim Chambless is an Associate Professor/Lecturer in the Department of Political Science at the University of Utah. Since 1987, he has taught classes in American National Government and Political Parties as well as Law and Politics, Controversial Legal Issues and Mass Communication Law, and American Constitutional Law. Since 1994, Tim has organized and led the Hinckley Institute of Politics’ Capital Encounter program in Washington, DC.  Tim earned his Bachelor’s Degree at the University of California at Santa Barbara and then earned two graduate degrees at the University of Utah.


Jerry Howe, MPA: Adjunct Instructor

Jerry Howe is a Policy Analyst in the Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel where he serves as staff to the Judiciary, Law Enforcement, and Criminal Justice Interim Committee, the Judicial Confirmation Committee, and the Redistricting Committee. Mr. Howe also coordinates the Legislative Intern Program which provides opportunities for 65 undergraduate students from six of Utah’s institutions of higher education to work directly with Utah Senators and Representatives during the Legislature’s annual general sessions. In addition to co-teaching the Hinckley Institute Legislative Intern Preparation course with Dr. Dan Jones, Mr. Howe is an adjunct professor at Weber State University and he teaches Public Policy Analysis in the Master of Public Administration program at the University of Utah. Mr. Howe earned a Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy and a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Brigham Young University.

Doug Foxley: Associate Instructor

Doug Foxley, the senior principal of the firm Foxley Pignanelli Attorneys at Law, is continually recognized by local media as the leading government relations expert in Utah. A practicing attorney, Mr. Foxley has been a major presence in Utah politics and legislative activities since 1982.  He has more than 20 years of hands-on experience representing clients in the lobbying, government, and public affairs areas.  Mr. Foxley has a wealth of experience in public affairs including communications strategies to support major initiatives, message development, media relations training and consultations, organization image-building, crisis management, community relations, and public event coordination.  Mr. Foxley served on the Utah State Board of Regents from 1985 to 1997 and as Chair of the Board from 1989 to 1993.  He has been actively involved in politics for many years.  He managed former Utah Governor Norm Bangerter’s first gubernatorial campaign in 1984.  He co-teaches the Hinckley Institute Political Management Course.

Frank Pignanelli: Associate Instructor

Frank Pignanelli is a featured Sunday Opinion Page political columnist for the Deseret Morning News.  He has many years of experience in lobbying and government relations, representing clients in a variety of legislative initiatives and regulatory matters including taxes, appropriations, financial institutions, insurance, technology, and other issues before the Utah State Legislature and various government agencies.  Mr. Pignanelli served in the Utah State Legislature from 1986 to 1996 and six of those years as Minority Leader.  He also served as the Vice President of Legal Services and General Counsel at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Utah from the 1993 to 1997.  He co-teaches the Hinckley Institute Political Management Course.

BRYSON MORGAN: Washington, DC, Liaison

A former Hinckley Intern, Morgan is now an Associate Caplin & Drysdale Law Firm in Washington, DC.  Prior to this position, he served as Investigative Counsel at the U.S. House of Representatives Office of Congressional Ethics. Morgan graduated with honors from the University of Utah and Harvard Law School.  During law school, he served as a legal clerk to the U.S. House of Representatives Office of Congressional Ethics and interned at the U.S. Attorney's Office in Boston, Massachusetts in the Economic Crimes Unit.  He also co-founded PlayoffPAC, which was nominated in 2011 for Sports Illustrated's Sportsman of the Year award for its work in bringing down college football's unpopular former post-season system, the Bowl Championship Series. 

Former Ambassador John Price: HINCKLEY RESIDENT SCHOLAR

John Price served as Ambassador to the Republic of Mauritius, Republic of Seychelles, and Union of Comoros from 2002-2005. Ambassador Price is a proven business leader and committed member of his community. He was on the forefront of economic and small business development in Utah and the western United States, and also served in national leadership roles. He was Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of JP Realty, Inc., a publicly traded New York Stock Exchange Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT), headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah and a former Director and member of the Executive Committee of Alta Industries Ltd. Mr. Price was a member of the Board of Trustees of the University of Utah from 1992-1999 and also served on the Advisory Board of the David Eccles School of Business (University of Utah). He was a member of the Small Business Administration Advisory Board and the Industry Sector Advisory Council on Small and Minority Business for Trade/Policy Matters. Mr. Price’s service in civic, educational, and economic development has been far reaching. He supports a variety of causes within his community. He serves on the Board of Overseers of the Hoover Institution at Stanford University and was a member of the Print Committee of the Whitney Museum in New York. He was a member of the Management Committee and Board of Trustees of the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. Mr. Price graduated from the University of Utah 1956. He and his wife, Marcia, have three children and eight grandchildren.

Sharon Mastracci: Hinckley Fellow, Associate Professor

Sharon Mastracci is an Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science and a Fellow in the Hinckley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah. As a Hinckley Institute fellow, she will replicate a 30-year-old survey of political and administrative leadership in Utah to test the theory of representative bureaucracy. Her project will gauge changes in the numbers of women in elected office and administration to determine whether policy outcomes be explained by women’s representation in policymaking and leadership positions in the state over time. Other areas of her scholarship have addressed multiple facets of public service working. Her research on emotional labor with Mary Ellen Guy and Meredith Newman has resulted in numerous publications, including their 2008 book Emotional Labor: Putting the Service in Public Service. They are currently studying the effect of culture on the experience of emotional labor in public service work. Sharon was a 2014-2015 Fulbright Scholar to the United Kingdom, and remains an associate at the Institute of Local Government Studies (INLOGOV), University of Birmingham (UK).