Thomas Harnisch
Vice President for Government Relations

Higher Ed

  • Costs
  • Finance and funding
  • Federal policy
  • Public opinion and advocacy
  • Public universities
  • State policy
  • Taxes

Tom Harnisch is vice president for government relations at SHEEO where he is responsible for planning, implementing, and coordinating SHEEO’s portfolio of federal relations, policy, communication, and advocacy work. He monitors new and potential federal action that has relevance to the SHEEO membership. He is also responsible for bringing these issues to the attention of SHEEO staff and SHEEO’s membership and for articulating their potential impact on members and the institutions and students they serve. Previously, Harnisch worked in a series of roles at the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU), including as director of state relations and policy analysis. He helped craft the AASCU Public Policy Agenda and planned the Higher Education Government Relations Conference. His research interests and commentary are on higher education finance, access, affordability, and other topics. He is also an adjunct faculty member at Georgetown University and The George Washington University. Harnisch earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, a master’s from the University of Minnesota, and a doctorate from The George Washington University.