In November 2020, UAA members were given the opportunity to fill three open seats on the Governing Board.  Voting members selected the following individuals to serve on the Board.


Elsie Harper-Anderson (re-elected)
Virginia Commonwealth University

Elsie Harper-Anderson is an Associate Professor of Urban and Regional Planning and Director of the Ph.D. Program in Public Policy and Administration at Virginia Commonwealth University. Her research examines the impact of macroeconomic transformation on regional economies and urban labor markets with a focus on social equity. Her recent work focuses on entrepreneurial ecosystems and their impact on building inclusive, equitable economies. She also studies the connection between workforce development and economic development in urban areas. Dr. Harper-Anderson earned her Ph.D. in City and Regional Planning from the University of California, Berkeley and an M.S. in Public Management and Policy from Carnegie Mellon University. She serves on the advisory board for the City of Richmond’s Office of Community Wealth Building. Prior to academia, her work involved evaluating and administering economic development, workforce development, and housing programs at the local, state, and federal levels. Elsie has served on the UAA Governing Board since 2018.  She was elected to the Executive Committee as Secretary in April of 2020.  She also served as Chair of the Membership Committee for two years. Elsie has been an active participant in UAA conferences since 1994. Dr. Harper-Anderson sought reelection to continue her work along with the rest of the governing board strengthening and evolving UAA to meet the needs of urban scholars and practitioners across the globe.  She is particularly invested in UAA’s efforts to improve access to resources and training for marginalized urban scholars as well as the association’s other social justice and equity-related initiatives.

Kathe Newman
Rutgers University – New Brunswick

Kathe Newman, Professor, is Program Director of the Urban Planning and Policy Development Program at the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy and Director of the Ralph W. Voorhees Center for Civic Engagement at Rutgers University. She teaches undergraduate, masters, and doctoral students in the areas of community development, community engaged research and planning, and social theory. Kathe holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from the Graduate School and University Center at the City University of New York. Her research interests include housing finance, gentrification, foreclosure, community food security, and urban political economy. She has published articles in Urban StudiesInternational Journal of Urban and Regional ResearchUrban GeographyUrban Affairs ReviewUrban GeographyShelterforceProgress in Human GeographyHousing StudiesGeoJournal, and Environment and Planning A. She is an associate editor at Environment and Planning A: Economy and Space. Kathe has been a member of UAA since the mid-1990s. She has chaired the conference program committee; sat on a number of committees including the Activist Scholar Award and the Best Book Award Committee and is currently on the finance committee; served on the board and mentored graduate students at the first two UAA pre-conference student events. Kathe plans to work with UAA to expand opportunities for graduate students and junior faculty such as year-round mentoring and to strengthen institutional UAA memberships and relations.

Jocelyn Taliaferro
North Carolina State University

Dr. Jocelyn DeVance Taliaferro is an Associate Professor in the North Carolina State University School of Social Work. Dr. Taliaferro’s research interests include teaching using contemporary television and Black women’s mental health. Her work appears in the Journal of Child and Family Social WorkJournal of Policy Practice, and Education and Urban Society. She recently completed a co-edited book on teaching social policy using the HBO special The Wire. She currently serves as Principal Investigator for the Opioid Workforce Expansion Program, a $1.3M grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration. Dr. Taliaferro has served the NC State School of Social Work as faculty as well as Director of the Graduate Program (DGP), Director of Field Instruction, and Interim Associate Department Head. She teaches grant writing and program development, social work administration, and research methods. In addition to her work in academia, she spent more than 25 years in the field of social work and nonprofit administration. Dr. Taliaferro has been an active member on several nonprofit boards of directors in Washington DC, Maryland, Delaware, and North Carolina. Dr Taliaferro has served UAA as Program Committee member (2010), Program Committee Co-Chair (2011), Member of the Governing Board (2010-2016) including Secretary-Treasurer 2011-2013 and Vice Chair (2013-2015). Dr. Taliaferro will focus her efforts on the continued professionalization of the board including succession planning, young scholar recruitment as well as increasing the representation of urban scholars that identify as Black, Indigenous, People of Color.



Note: These three individuals formally begin their new term on the UAA Board in April 2021.