Category: Alumni News, General News

Title: Political pollster to professor: How a McCourt alum is paying it forward

Alex Lundry GU Politics discussion

“I was extremely lucky to have entered a field as it was taking shape,” said Lundry, the co-founder of Tunnl, a nonpartisan audience analytics firm. “Becoming a data scientist allowed me to combine the programming, statistics and domain expertise that I gained earning my public policy degree.” 

Lundry’s work in analytics often requires the use of political polling data. His company, Tunnl, uses microtargeting tactics to support organizations with issue advocacy and brand management initiatives, while the other company he co-founded, Deep Root Analytics, focuses on campaign politics. Acknowledging that not all polls are perfect, Lundry noted that a major flaw with current polling is how the data is being used. “Policymakers and politicians should be using polls to better understand the needs, wishes and desires of the electorate,” he said. 

Nearly two decades since Lundry began his career in data and polling, he remains grateful for the McCourt School’s cutting-edge curriculum and optimistic about the current and future McCourt students who will enter the policy world armed with critical quantitative skills.

Alex Lundry discussion group

There is a direct and immediate line from my graduate school curriculum to my career path, and there is no way I would be doing what I do today without my McCourt School education.

Alex Lundry

Returning to the Hilltop to pay it forward

Lundry joined the Fall 2022 cohort of GU Politics Fellows with more than 15 years of professional experience as a campaign data scientist and pollster for presidential candidates, national organizations and Fortune 500 companies. 

The GU Politics Fellows program, established in the fall of 2015, connects leaders in politics, journalism and public service with current students, facilitating learning experiences between both groups. Each fellow hosts weekly discussion groups, which are open to the entire University community, on a topic of their choice. Fellows also hold regular office hours, participate in GU Politics programming and mentor students.

This fall, Lundry is leading a discussion group titled “Data in a Digitizing Democracy,” bringing together students interested in topics such as the power of data visualization in politics and the significance of transparency among digital advertising giants like Facebook, Twitter and Google. “Most students have grown up in a data-soaked world, living their lives online,” he said. “They have a unique ability to understand how important data is to the internet.” 

Lundry, a former high school educator, is also teaching a data visualization course in the McCourt School’s Data Science for Public Policy program, helping current students better understand graphical analysis and the connection between politics and policymaking. 

“It feels fantastic to engage in the community and with so many smart, motivated and curious students,” he said. “I am so grateful for what Georgetown did to enable my career. That was an enormous motivating principle in returning to the McCourt School as a GU Politics Fellow and adjunct professor.”