Lecturer in Residence
School of Communication
Ph.D. (candidate), Virginia Tech School of Public and International Affairs; Master in Public Administration, Harvard University Kennedy School of Government; Bachelor of Arts, Duke University
Donald W. Tighe is a veteran of over twenty years of public affairs, media relations, and strategic communications leadership in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. Much of this experience has included a special focus on effective cross-sector cooperation, advancing public/private partnerships and facilitating information sharing and technology transfer into and out of government.
Mr. Tighe is currently a professor of public communication in the American University School of Communication, having also served as an adjunct professor of public speaking and strategic communication at the George Washington University. He has also taught crisis communications in the American University School of Communication master’s degree program, and is a Ph.D. candidate in Virginia Tech’s School of Public and International Affairs in Alexandria, Virginia. Mr. Tighe also serves on the Board of Advisors to the American University Kogod Cybersecurity Governance Center, and on the Board of Directors of the Irish Network-DC, a professional and cultural networking nonprofit.
He recently served a director of international strategy in Verizon’s Public Policy, Law, and Security group, working as a liaison to U.S. government organizations including the State Department, the Federal Communications Commission, and the National Security Council. He earlier served as Vice President of External Affairs at In-Q-Tel, the independent strategic investment firm that supports the U.S. Intelligence Community. Prior to that he served in the federal government, including at the U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security and the White House Office of Science & Technology Policy. He began his work in the federal government at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), as head of public liaison and Senior Counselor for Public Affairs with the Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance. He has also served in state government, as press secretary and communications director at the Florida Dept. of State, and in nonprofit management as editor and communications director. He holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, and a Bachelor’s Degree in economics and political science from Duke University.