Meet Our Team

Public Wise brings together an experienced group of individuals from the public sector, research and organizing.

Jessie Kalbfeld, PhD

Leadership Team

Research Director


Jessie holds a doctorate in sociology from New York University, where she was an NSF Graduate Research Fellow and an inaugural NYU Furman Law Fellow at NYU Law School 2015-2016. Her research interests include race and inequality, neighborhood change, and social control. Some of her recent research projects include an investigation of court reporter mis-transcription of African American English, coauthored with an interdisciplinary team, which was the top downloaded article in Language in 2019-2020; an interrogation of critical mass as it relates to Affirmative Action, published in the Law & Society Review; and an analysis of complaints made against police in Chicago, co-authored with Jacob Faber and published in City & Community. Her dissertation research focused on the impact of racial and socioeconomic neighborhood change on social control in New York City.  Her recent research on court reporters has been covered by the Philadelphia Inquirer, the New York Times, NPR, Vice News Tonight, Vice Media, Daily KOS, and more.

Jessie has worked as a research and data consultant for the Southern Poverty Law Center of Mississippi and Planned Parenthood of Metropolitan Washington D.C., among others. She is a founding member of CulturePoint LLC, a research and consulting firm that provides evidence-based approaches to developing leadership and high-performance in organizations through effective management of diverse workforces and creation of inclusive environments. Through CulturePoint, Jessie has consulted with clients such as the US Navy, the Department of Energy, and the Environmental Protection Agency on organizational metrics for diversity and inclusion, skills for public-facing scientific presentations, and cognitive processes of decision making in diverse organizations.