Kerstyn Olson

Kerstyn Olson oversees all Institute activities.

Kerstyn’s responsibilities include oversight of all Unruh Institute program development, promotion and implementation, oversight of all internships and scholarships, all fundraising, grant writing, and fiscal management, as well as management of all professional and student staff.

Kerstyn moderates the “Students Talk Back” bi-weekly discussion series, which features analysis of various national and local public policy issues. Kerstyn also serves as co-Director of the USC Dana and David Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences/Los Angeles Times Poll series.

Her positions at the Unruh Institute have included Interim Director, Deputy Director, and Chief of Staff.

Prior to joining the Unruh Institute, Kerstyn was the Director of USC Spectrum, USC's Cultural Arts & Events department. She was responsible for an annual season of the finest arts and lecture programs featuring nationally and internationally known attractions. She also programmed and produced the annual USC President's Distinguished Artist & Lecture Series, which hosted former dignitaries, world leaders and heads of state.

Kerstyn holds a Bachelor's of Science Degree in Music Industry from the USC Thornton School of Music and a Master of Arts degree in Communication Management with an emphasis in Communication Law and Policy from the USC Annenberg School for Communication.

If you wish to contact Kerstyn, please email

  • 3518 Trousdale Parkway, Von KleinSmid Center 263, Los Angeles, CA 90089-0045
  • Phone: (213) 740 - 8964
  • Fax: (213) 740 - 3167
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