Michael R. Fisher Jr.
Department of African American Studies
Ph.D., Vanderbilt University
M.A., Vanderbilt University
M.Div., Howard University
B.S., Howard University
Michael R. Fisher Jr., Ph.D. is Assistant Professor of African American Studies in the College of Social Sciences and an affiliate scholar at the Metropolitan Policy Center at American University. He specializes in Black religion and cultural studies, race and socio-economic inequity, and ethics and public policy. His current book project, tentatively titled Black Urbanism: Toward an Afrofuturist Vision of Community Building reorients the debate on mixed-income housing. It argues that mixed-income housing creation as market-driven urban social policy must be abandoned—not reformed—because it serves as a vehicle of death for Black communities living in high-poverty neighborhoods. As an alternative, it casts a vision for community building that promotes their well-being.
Before his career as an educator, Dr. Fisher was a public policy advocate on Capitol Hill. His policy portfolio included immigration reform, financial reform, and federal welfare programs for those struggling in poverty. He later transitioned to local D.C. politics and community organizing when he became the inaugural Director of Advocacy at a local nonprofit organization. There he was responsible for the development of the organization’s public policy agenda and advocacy strategy for affordable housing creation and the elimination of chronic homelessness in the nation’s capital, working with other local nonprofits, community leaders, D.C. residents, and elected officials in the process.