State of Our State 2019: Rural Arizona Now


Summary of State of Our State 2019: Rural Arizona Now

By Kira Olsen-Medina
December 23, 2019

According to Melissa Kovacs, associate director for research at the Morrison Institute for Public Policy, data from Morrison’s recent statewide poll corroborated results from another recent study, which found most people incorrectly categorized themselves on a rural/urban self-report. Meaning, based on how the federal government defines "rural" and "urban" communities, most people misclassify where they live.



See the program in its entirety or watch each panel discussion and presentations.

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State of Our State 2019

Melissa Kovacs

Panel 1

Distinguished Fellows

Welcome SOS 2019

Jonathan Koppell

Michael Crow

Panel 2

State of Our State 2019

2019 State of Our State
November 25, 2019

Rural Arizona Now

Monday, November 25, 2019
Registration and networking: 9:30 a.m.
Program: 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Phoenix Airport Marriott
1101 N. 44th St., Phoenix, AZ 85008

  • Rural Arizona leaders share what makes their communities thrive, the solutions that will make them even better and why it matters to you. Speakers address state and local governance, resource allocation, our changing electorate and the intersection of rural and urban economies.
  • Morrison Institute experts release exclusive statewide polling data and bust myths about rural Arizona.
  • ASU President Michael Crow offers insight.

State of Our State 2019
Monday, November 25, 2019
Phoenix Airport Marriott

Rural Arizona Now

Crow, Koppell, Whitsett, Kovacs

Remarks presented by Michael M. Crow, president, Arizona State University, Andrea Whitsett, director, ASU Morrison Institute for Public Policy and Jonathan Koppell, dean, Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions. Melissa Kovacs, associate director for research, Morrison Institute for Public Policy presents current research highlights including the new 2019 poll findings.

Distinguished Fellows

Morrison Institute honors the new Distinguished Fellows presented by Mary Pahissa Upchurch, Morrison Institute board chair.

Diana “Dede” Yazzie Devine, CEO, Native American Connections
Grady Gammage Jr., founder, Gammage & Burnham

The Panels

Panel one

Panel: Who Gets It and How Much? Power, Government and Fiscal Resources

Lisa Urias, managing partner, CoNecs North America, and executive board member at ASU Morrison Institute
Amanda Aguirre, president & CEO of the Regional Center for Border Health, Inc., Kimber Lanning, founder and executive director of Local First Arizona Foundation, Traci Morris, director of the American Indian Policy Institute (AIPI) at ASU, Steve Seleznow, President & Chief Executive Officer of the Arizona Community Foundation, and Keith Watkins, senior vice president of Rural and Economic Development for the Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA)

Panel 2

Panel: How Can We Build Healthy Rural Economies?

Sarah Porter, director, Kyl Center for Water Policy at Morrison Institute
Liz Archuleta, Coconino County supervisor, Mila Besich, mayor, Town of Superior, Bruce Bracker, Supervisor – 3rd District, Santa Cruz County, Jason Whiting, Navajo County supervisor, Jane Russell Winiecki, chair, Yavapai-Apache Nation


From the Office of the President of Arizona State University

  • New American University

    New American University

online students assets_720

A look at Arizona State University's online students as they give their views on their educational experiences and how they have succeeded.


Morrison Institute's State of Our State event as presented by Sarah Spencer, graphic reporter.

  • The Art of Sarah Spencer

    The Art of Sarah Spencer


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