Program Overview

Faculty & Staff

The EMIS faculty features a distinguished and diverse group drawn from the Jackson School of International Studies, the wider University of Washington academic community and real-world practitioners in the field.

Program Director

  • Taso Lagos

    Taso Lagos

    Interim Director, Executive Master of International Studies

    Ph.D., Political Communication, University of Washington


    Campus Box: 353650

    Taso G. Lagos has taught for over 22 years at the University of Washington, where he also received his BA, MA, and Ph.D. (Political Communication). His articles, solo or co-authored, have appeared in New Media & Society, Journal of Modern Greek Studies, The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, Popular Communication, Journal of Communication, Political Communication, and others. He is founding editor of the Journal of Charisma Studies. His published books include American Zeus: The Life of Alexander Pantages, Theater Mogul (McFarland), Charisma and Religious War in America (Cambridge Scholars) and Cooking Greek/Becoming American: Forty Years at Seattle’s Continental Restaurant (McFarland) and the forthcoming The Age of Charisma: Understanding the Charismatic Personality (Ethics Press). In 2005, he established the Greece Study Abroad Program hosted by Harvard University’s Center of Hellenic Studies in Greece. He was recently named a UW Office of Global Affairs’ Global Innovation Fund Fellow and helped found Street Soccer Seattle that encourages folks without homes to play soccer to transition into self-sustaining lives. He has frequently contributed to the Seattle Times opinion-editorial page.


  • Warren Acuncius

    Lecturer, Jackson School of International Studies

    Master's in Public Administration, University of Washington

    Warren has worked for USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (previously known as the Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance – OFDA) since 2013. He is currently a Civil-Military Disaster Operations Division (CMD) Team Lead in Washington, DC. Previously he acted as a Senior Humanitarian Assistance Advisor to the Department of Defense USIndoPacific Command based in Oahu, HI. He has a background in domestic emergency management with FEMA and specializes in chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, high yield explosives (CBRNE) disaster planning. Warren facilitates approximately 15 Joint Humanitarian Operations Courses (JHOC) a year and co-facilitates the United Nations’ Civil Military Coordination Course for an international audience. He has supported numerous international disaster relief efforts in both a government and NGO capacity (e.g., Lebanon explosions, Ebola in West Africa, Haiti Earthquake). Warren was a 2018 Fellow at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security – Emerging Leaders in Biosecurity program. He is from Washington State and is a graduate of the Evans School and Western Washington University.

  • Jeffrey Begun

    Lecturer, Jackson School of International Studies

    Box 353650

    Jeffrey C. Begun is a Lecturer at the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies at the University of Washington. He specializes in international economics and political economy, economic growth and development, China, and environmental issues. He received his Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Washington and is the co-author of several articles including “Red Obsession: Foreign Conglomerates Battle over Chinese Wine” and “In Search of an Environmental Kuznets Curve in Sulphur Dioxide Concentrations: a Bayesian Model Averaging Approach.” He has done field work in China and has taught political economy at Renmin University in Beijing. He was part of the “5 + 2” Initiative Delegation in Taiwan and has served on the editorial board of the International Journal of Sustainable Economy. He has many years of teaching experience in interdisciplinary programs and has taught courses in a variety of areas including international environmental policy, economic development, research methods, international political economy, and China’s economic rise. He speaks conversational Spanish and Mandarin.

  • James Bernard

    James Bernard

    Lecturer, Jackson School of International Studies

    BA in Journalism, Ohio University

    James Bernard is Director of Corporate Sustainability Services at Resonance, an award-winning consultancy focused on partnerships in international development, impact investment and frontier market expansion. An internationally recognized expert on multi-stakeholder partnerships, Bernard is responsible for building out a West Coast office for Resonance focused on establishing stronger links between technology for international development. Prior to joining Resonance, Bernard was Senior Director of Global Strategic Partnerships for the Education group at Microsoft, where he led a team that was responsible for building partnerships with publishers, education technology companies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and international organizations such as the UN and World Bank. Between 2006 and 2008 Bernard served as Vice President of Marketing and Communications for World Learning, an international NGO focused on educational exchange and international development. Bernard also held a number of positions at Microsoft between 1999 and 2006, working on consumer technology products and digital access programs to bring technology to emerging markets. Bernard is a frequent speaker on issues related to public-private partnerships in education and international development. He serves on the board of directors of Pact, a global NGO working on health, livelihood and environmental projects in 35 countries.

  • Scott Edwards

    Lecturer, Jackson School of International Studies

    JD, Penn State Dickinson Law

    Scott Edwards has over 20 years of experience working globally in the software industry with his last 16 years at Microsoft. Scott is known as a strategic business leader who has executed multi-million dollar global programs with multi-billion dollar results. He’s been responsible for global communities, business rhythms and programs for technology, policy and sales in both the public and private sectors. He’s influenced global policy for cloud security, privacy, compliance and transparency. He’s also negotiated multi-lateral intellectual property agreements for open standards and open source development. Over the years, he’s represented the software industry and Fortune 50 companies before national and international media, technical fora, governments, industry groups and academia in dozens of speaking and consultative roles.

  • Kathie Friedman

    Associate Professor, Jackson School of International Studies

    PhD in Sociology, Binghamton University


    Campus Box: 353650

    Kathie Friedman-Kasaba is an associate professor at the Jackson School of International Studies and an adjunct associate professor in the Department of Sociology and the Department of Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies. She is a faculty member in the interdisciplinary PhD program in Near and Middle Eastern studies. Friedman is the former chair of the Jewish studies program and previously directed the master’s program in international studies and the undergraduate honors thesis programs at the Jackson School. Her main area of study and research is comparative forced migrations and immigration, particularly to the United States and the European Union, with a focus on ethnic and political incorporation. Friedman’s publications include Memories of Migration: Gender, Ethnicity, and Work in the Lives of Jewish and Italian Women, New York 1870–1924; Creating and Transforming Households: The Constraints of the World Economy (coauthored); and a chapter titled “On Halloween We Dressed Up Like KGB Agents” in Sociology Confronts the Holocaust: Memories and Identities in Jewish Diasporas.

  • Sunila Kale

    Sunila Kale

    Chair and Director, South Asian Studies, Jackson School of International Studies

    PhD in Government, University of Texas, Austin

    206 221-4852

    Campus Box: 353650

    Sunila Kale is an associate professor, chair of the South Asian Studies program and director of the South Asian Studies Center at the Jackson School. Her research and teaching focus on Indian and South Asian politics and political economy. Kale’s first book, Electrifying India, focuses on the politics of energy and infrastructure in post-independent India. She has several ongoing research projects, including the study of energy, infrastructure, and development in India; the politics of extractive industries, focused empirically on eastern India; and a collaborate project about the politics of yoga in India and the United States.

  • Reşat Kasaba

    Faculty, Jackson School of International Studies

    PhD in Sociology, Binghamton University


    Campus Box: 353650

    Reşat Kasaba served as the director of the Jackson School for 10 years, completing his tenure in June 2020. Other previous leadership roles include as President of the Association for Professional Schools of International Affairs and of the Turkish Studies Association.. His main areas of research have been the Ottoman Empire and Turkey. He has researched and taught on economic history, state-society relations, migration, urban history and ethnicity and nationalism. Kasaba is the author and editor of seven books and more than 40 articles dealing with the Ottoman Empire, Turkey and the Middle East. Recently, he edited a volume of The Cambridge History of Modern Turkey and wrote A Moveable Empire: Ottoman Nomads, Migrants, and Refugees. In 1999 he was the recipient of the Distinguished Teaching Award from the University of Washington.

  • José Antonio Lucero

    Associate Professor and Chair, Latin American and Caribbean Studies, Jackson School of International Studies

    PhD in Politics, Princeton University


    Campus Box: 353650

    Tony Lucero is chair of Latin American and Caribbean Studies. His areas of expertise include international political economy, cultural interactions, social movements, Latin American politics and borderlands. His research examines the encounters between Western and indigenous political projects in the Americas. Lucero is the author of Struggles of Voice: The Politics of Indigenous Representation in the Andes and coeditor of the Oxford Handbook of Indigenous Peoples Politics. He is working on a research project on the cultural politics of conflicts between Awajún and Wampis indigenous communities and the filmmaker Werner Herzog in Peru and one on human rights activism, religion and indigenous politics on the Mexico–U.S. border. He earned his MA and PhD from Princeton University.

  • Tabitha Grace Mallory

    Affiliate Instructor, Jackson School of International Studies

    Ph.D. in International Relations, Johns Hopkins University

    Tabitha Grace Mallory is an affiliate faculty member of the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies. She specializes in Chinese foreign and environmental policy. Dr. Mallory is currently conducting research on China and global ocean governance and has published work on China’s fisheries and oceans policy. Dr. Mallory has consulted for the United Nations Foundation, the World Wildlife Fund, the World Bank, and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). She previously served as a postdoctoral research fellow in the Princeton-Harvard China and the World Program. She has also worked for The National Bureau of Asian Research and for the U.S. government.

  • Jim McDermott

    Lecturer, Jackson School of International Studies

    M.D., University of Illinois College of Medicine

    Congressman (Ret.) Jim McDermott retired in November 2016 after 14 terms representing the 7th Congressional District of Washington State, which includes Seattle and parts of several neighboring communities.  His government career spans over 40 years, including a decade in the State Senate and a year as a U.S. Foreign Medical Officer in what is today the Democratic Republic of Congo. Congressman McDermott received his M.D from the university of Illinois College of Medicine.

  • Scott Montgomery

    Lecturer, Jackson School of International Studies

    MA in Geological and Earth Sciences/Geosciences, Cornell University


    Campus Box: 353650

    Scott Montgomery specializes in areas related to energy, including resources, security, policy, geopolitics and climate change. He has more than 25 years of experience as a professional and consulting geoscientist in the energy industry and has published on frontier oil and gas plays, emerging technologies and shale oil and gas. He has performed consulting work for a wide variety of companies, energy funds, investors and other entities, with individual projects in the U.S. and Canada, South America, North Africa, the Middle East, Southeast Asia and the Arctic. He has received several writing awards, including a National Endowment for the Humanities fellowship. He is the author of 12 books, including The Powers that Be: Global Energy for the Twenty-First Century and Beyond and Does Science Need a Global Language? English and the Future of Research. In 2014 he was honored with the Jackson School Student Service Award for his support and dedication to furthering the achievements of undergraduates.

  • Jamie Nelson

    Lecturer, Jackson School of International Studies

    MA in National Security Studies, Naval War College

    Jamie Nelson is cofounder of Red Telescope Ventures, where he provides strategic planning and consultation services for organizations working in international development, international business and market research. He has extensive experience working for the U.S. government, the private sector and nonprofit sectors throughout the Middle East and Africa. He has more than a decade of experience in strategic communications and advocacy for government, businesses and nonprofits with a focus on policymaking, foreign affairs, and defense in the executive and legislative branches. Previously, Nelson served as the director of strategic development at Concentric Advisors and as the director of policy and advocacy at williamsworks. He was a senior staff member to two U.S. senators, a senior adviser at the U.S. Department of State, an associate director at the White House, a resident program officer for the International Republican Institute’s in-country program in Iraq, and a defense policy analyst at the U.S. Government Accountability Office.

  • Robert Pekkanen

    Robert Pekkanen

    Professor, Jackson School of International Studies

    PhD in Political Science, Harvard University


    Campus Box: 353650

    Robert Pekkanen is a professor at the Jackson School of International Studies and an adjunct associate professor of political science and sociology at the University of Washington. His research interests include electoral systems, political parties and civil society. He was a coprincipal investigator on a project exploring how electoral systems shape politics. Pekkanen has authored, coauthored or coedited six books on American nonprofit advocacy, Japanese civil society and Japanese elections and political parties. His first book, Japan’s Dual Civil Society: Members Without Advocates, captured the Masayoshi Ohira Memorial Prize in 2008 and was translated into Japanese. He earned his PhD in political science from Harvard University.

  • Mark Ward

    Mark Ward

    Lecturer, Jackson School of International Studies

    JD, University of California, Berkeley

    Mark Ward retired from the Foreign Service at the rank of Career Minister after more than thirty years. He served in high risk environments like Pakistan, Afghanistan, Libya and along the Turkish-Syrian border, overseeing US Government aid programs and coordinating international aid for the United Nations. Most recently, he was the US Government’s chair of a task force to improve humanitarian access for Syria, co-chaired with the Russian Federation, at the UN in Geneva. Mr. Ward also has extensive experience with public-private partnerships to prepare for and respond to natural and man-made disasters. Before joining the Foreign Service, Mr. Ward was in private law practice in Washington, DC.

  • James Wellman

    James Wellman

    Chair of Comparative Religion, Jackson School of International Studies

    PhD in Religion and the Human Sciences, University of Chicago


    Campus Box: 353650

    James Wellman Jr. is professor and chair of the comparative religion program in the Jackson School of International Studies. His areas of expertise are American religious culture, history and politics, and he also works on religious and global issues related to violence and human security. Wellman’s publications include The Gold Coast Church and the Ghetto: Christ and Culture in Mainline Protestantism; Belief and Bloodshed: Religion and Violence Across Time and Tradition; Religion and Human Security: A Global Perspective; and Rob Bell and a New American Christianity. His 2008 monograph Evangelical vs. Liberal: The Clash of Christian Cultures in the Pacific Northwest received honorable mention for the Distinguished Book Award by the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion.

  • Anand Yang

    Anand Yang

    Professor, Jackson School of International Studies

    PhD in History, University of Virginia


    Campus Box: 353650

    Anand Yang is a professor in the Jackson School of International Studies and Chair of the History Department at the University of Washington. From 2002 and 2010 he served as director of the Jackson School of International Studies and was the Golub Chair of International Studies. Prior to joining the UW in 2002, Yang taught at Sweet Briar College and the University of Utah, where he was chair of the history department and then director of the Asian studies program. His publications include the books The Limited Raj: Agrarian Relations in Colonial India and Bazaar India: Markets, Society and the Colonial State in Bihar; a coedited volume titled Interactions: Transregional Perspectives on World History; an edited volume on crime and criminality in British India; and numerous articles in journals on Asian studies, history and the social sciences. Yang serves on the editorial boards of several journals on history and Asian studies and was previously an editor of The Journal of Asian Studies and Peasant Studies.

Program Staff

  • Sabrina Tatta

    Interim Graduate Program Advisor


    Sabrina Tatta, a native of Formia, Italy, received her MA in Italian from the UW in 1997. She received her BA in English Literature from University of Puget Sound.  She is currently an undergraduate advisor for the Jackson School of International Studies as well as the interim MAAIS Graduate Program Advisor.