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Photograph of Molly O'Rourke

Molly O'Rourke Executive in Residence School of Communication

Additional Positions at AU
Director, MA program in Political Communication
BA Political Science (magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa), Brown University

MA Political Science (Kellogg Foundation Fellow), University of Michigan

Favorite Spot on Campus
In the classroom
Molly O’Rourke is an Executive in Residence in the School of Communication where she also serves as director of the MA program in Political Communication. She has more than 15 years’ experience in the field of public opinion research, most recently as a partner at Hart Research in Washington, DC. She has directed multiphase qualitative and quantitative research for a variety of issue advocacy and nonprofit organizations, trade associations, political candidates and parties, and media outlets. Earlier in her career, Molly worked on Capitol Hill, for EMILY’s List, the women’s political action committee, and as an analyst at the Center for Public Interest Polling at Rutgers University’s Eagleton Institute. For several years, she co-wrote a monthly column about trends in public opinion and political behavior titled “Behind the Numbers” for The Hill, a Capitol Hill newspaper. Molly currently serves on the Institutional Review Board (IRB) which oversees human subject research and she is a member of the board of governors of the Brown University Alumni Association.
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Faculty Feature: Molly O'Rourke
For the Media
To request an interview for a news story, call AU Communications at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.


Spring 2020

  • COMM-420 Topics in Mass Media: The Presidential Primaries

Fall 2020

  • COMM-639 Political Communication

  • COMM-738 Research for Strategic Comm

  • GOVT-628 Proseminar in Political Comm

AU Experts

Area of Expertise

Political communication, voting, polling, "drop off" voters, voter turnout, non-traditional voters, political science, public opinion, politics, American electorate

Additional Information

Her impressive 18-year career in public opinion research and communications includes 12 years at the prestigious Hart Research firm where she has held a number of senior level positions including most recently as partner. She has worked with a diverse portfolio of high profile, national clients such as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, League of Conservation Voters, NBC News, Prevention Magazine and MTV's Choose or Lose Campaign. She is a well respected expert within the field of political communication and has co-written a column for The Hill newspaper and has appeared as a polling expert on a number of television programs including NBC Nightly News, Hardball with Chris Matthews, and WRC-TV DC's local NBC station.

For the Media

To request an interview for a news story, call AU Communications at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.

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AU News & Achievements

Panelists from the event from left to right: Molly O'Rourke, Margie Omero, Kristen Soltis Anderson, and Betsy Fischer Martin.

On Campus ·

“The Pollsters” Talk About the Countdown to Election 2016

The hosts of popular podcast, The Pollsters, came to AU for an event co-hosted by the School of Public Affairs and the School of Communication.
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