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Fiona Hill

A.M. ’91, Ph.D. ‘98

Daughter of a former coal miner in northeast England, Hill overcame class barriers to become a first-generation college student, eventually receiving her doctorate from Harvard. Hill went on to serve three U.S. presidential administrations as an expert on Russia and Europe, capturing national attention when she testified during the first Trump impeachment hearing. She is currently a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and the incoming Chancellor of Durham University in her home region of the UK.

In her bestselling memoir, There is Nothing for You Here: Finding Opportunity in the Twenty-First Century, Hill describes education as “the beating heart of the infrastructure of opportunity. ”She has consistently advocated to increase educational access for all. Reframing education as a “massive societal benefit” rather than just an “individual benefit,” she has critiqued the educational debt problem in both the U.K. and the U.S. and opened up discussions about restructuring tuition costs. She also promised to “work tirelessly for racial justice” and address the longstanding issue of sexual harassment.

While Hill notes that she experienced discrimination and exclusion largely based on socio-economic status, she is “acutely conscious of the additional barriers that race imposes on educational attainment and socio-economic mobility.” She advocates for increasing “access to high-quality education for students from underrepresented and disadvantaged groups” and providing the financial and material support they need to access the same kinds of opportunities Harvard gave her.

Fiona Hill
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