Shailagh Murray is currently the Executive Vice President for Public Affairs at Columbia University. She earned her BA from the University of Missouri-Columbia, and her MS in Journalism from Northwestern University. She began her career in journalism, spending more than two decades covering local, national, and international stories for The Tampa Tribune, The Wall Street Journal, and The Washington Post. Her areas of focus included the transition from communism to democracy in Eastern Europe, the rise of the European Union, four United States presidential elections, and major legislative and political developments in the U.S. Congress. In 2011, Shailagh was appointed Communications Director for Vice President Biden and shortly thereafter became his Deputy Chief of Staff. She then served as Senior Advisor to President Obama for the final two years of his presidency.