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Panelist Bio


Matthew Lee, Ph.D.
LSU Associate Professor of Sociology and Coordinator Crime and Policy Evaluation Research Group

Matthew R. Lee is an Associate Professor of Sociology, member of the graduate faculty, and the coordinator of the Crime and Policy Evaluation Research group (CAPER) at Louisiana State University. He earned his PhD in Sociology from LSU in 1999. His areas of expertise are homicide and interpersonal violence; urban and rural crime patterns; the influence of social institutions and civic engagement on violent crime; labor market processes and violence; and public reactions to crime.

He is the author of more than 35 peer reviewed scientific journal articles. These publications have appeared in a variety of top tier social science journals including Criminology, Journal of Research on Crime and Delinquency, Justice Quarterly, Deviant Behavior, Social Forces, Social Problems, The Sociological Quarterly, Social Science Research, Rural Sociology, Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, and many others.

He has also authored a variety of fact sheets for policy makers, the media, and the general public on such topics as citizen attitudes toward law enforcement in Baton Rouge and the very impressive performance of the Baton Rouge Police Department in clearing murders by arrest. He has delivered more than 50 presentations at the meetings of national and international organizations such as the America Sociological Association, the American Society of Criminology, and the Southern Sociological Association.

His research has been financially supported by a variety of sources, and in 2003 he was awarded the Faculty Early Career Development Award from the National Science Foundation, a 5 year $400,000 grant which is considered among the most prestigious and competitive grants available to social scientists.

He currently serves on the editorial boards of four peer reviewed journals in the fields of sociology and criminology, and regularly acts as an editorial consultant for approximately 20 journals and granting agencies. He regularly teaches undergraduate classes and graduate seminars on the sociology of crime and violence at LSU.

Current Topic


     02/17 - Black & the Blue

What can be done to improve trust among the police and the public they serve?
Last year’s shooting of an African-American male in Baton Rouge by two white police officers re-ignited a national debate on how law enforcement interacts with minority communities. Nationwide demonstrations were ultimately marred by the targeted ambush of 12 white officers in Dallas and the killing of three members of law enforcement in Baton Rouge. What can be done to improve trust among the police and the public they serve? How can Louisiana’s Capital City productively move beyond these events? Louisiana Public Square looks for answers on a special town hall edition, “Black & the Blue” Wednesday, February 22 at 7 p.m. on LPB HD and in New Orleans on WLAE. (Recording Monday, February 20)

Invitation, details and directions (pdf format)

Our panelists will be:
• Fr. Rick Andrus, St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church, Together BR
• Darrell Basco, state president of Fraternal Order of Police
• Sharon Weston Broome, Mayor-President of Baton Rouge
• Rep. Ted James, D-Baton Rouge; Public Safety Task Force
• Stephanie Riegel; Greater Baton Rouge Business Report

LPB CEO Beth Courtney and Reverend Raymond Jetson, pastor of Star Hill Church host the program. Robyn Merrick with the Southern University System and Bob Mann with LSU’s Manship School will moderate the discussion.
Learn More!
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»»» View all Topics!
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