top of page
KDittmar_Headshot2020 - Kelly Dittmar.jpg
Dr. Kelly Dittmar

Kelly Dittmar is an Associate Professor of Political Science at Rutgers University–Camden and Director of Research at the Center for American Women and Politics (CAWP) at the Eagleton Institute of Politics. She is the co-author of A Seat at the Table: Congresswomen’s Perspectives on Why Their Representation Matters (Oxford University Press, 2018) (with Kira Sanbonmatsu and Susan J. Carroll) and author of Navigating Gendered Terrain: Stereotypes and Strategy in Political Campaigns (Temple University Press, 2015). Dittmar’s research focuses on gender and American political institutions. She was also the project director of Gender Watch 2018, a a project of CAWP and the Barbara Lee Family Foundation.


Dittmar was an American Political Science Association (APSA) Congressional Fellow from 2011 to 2012, where she served as a legislative aide on education, labor, social welfare, and women’s issues. She previously worked as a Federal Legislative Assistant for Governor Jennifer Granholm (MI).


At CAWP, Dittmar manages national research projects, helps to develop and implement CAWP’s research agenda, and contributes to CAWP reports, publications, and analyses. She also works with CAWP’s programs for women’s public leadership and has been an expert source and commentator for media outlets including MSNBC, NPR, PBS, the New York Times, and the Washington Post.


Dittmar earned her B.A. from Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, MI and her Ph.D. from Rutgers University-New Brunswick.

Areas of Interest

Campaigns and Elections, Political Representation, Political Institutions, Congress

Graduate Courses

I do not currently teach any graduate courses.

Undergraduate Courses

790:356 Women & American Politics (Rutgers-Camden)

Upcoming Presentations

American Political Science Association General Conference 2022

Follow Kelly
Recent Publications

Dittmar, Kelly. 2021. “Invisible Forces: Gender, Race, and Congressional Staff.” Politics, Groups, and Identities. Online First.

Dittmar, Kelly. 2020. “Urgency and Ambition: The Influence of Political Environment and Emotion in Spurring U.S. Women’s Candidacies in 2018.” European Journal of Politics and Gender 3(1): 143-160.

Dittmar, Kelly. 2021. “Making the Case for Women’s Representation: What, Who, and Why.” In Women in politics, Women in Leadership, eds. Rosemarijn de Geus, Erin Tolley, Elizabeth Goodyear-Grant, and Peter John Loewen. Toronto, Canada: University of Toronto Press, 135-142.

Dittmar, Kelly. 2021. “Measuring Success: Women in 2020 Legislative Elections.” Center for American Women and Politics, Eagleton Institute of Politics, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ.

Dittmar, Kelly. 2019. “Unfinished Business: Women Running in 2018 and Beyond.” New Brunswick, NJ: Center for American Women and Politics, Eagleton Institute of Politics, Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey.

bottom of page