Staff Directory

The APSA national office is supported by 24 staff professionals, guided by 3 senior directors and the executive director. The APSA Council and committees govern association programs and activities. The APSA national office is located in an historic rowhouse in Dupont Circle, in Northwest Washington, DC.

Executive Director: Steven Rathgeb Smith

General Inquiries

American Political Science Association
1527 New Hampshire Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20036-1203

Phone: (202) 483-2512
Fax: (202) 483-2657
Email: [email protected]


Executive Management


Steven Rathgeb Smith
Executive Director
Steven Rathgeb Smith is the executive director of the American Political Science Association. Previously, he was the Louis A. Bantle Chair in Public Administration at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University. He also taught for many years at the University of Washington where he was the Nancy Bell Evans Professor of Public Affairs at the Evans School of Public Affairs and director of the Nancy Bell Evans Center for Nonprofits & Philanthropy. In addition, he has taught at Georgetown, Duke, American University, and Washington University in St. Louis. From 1997 to 2004, he was editor of Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly and, from 2006 to 2008, president of the Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action. Dr. Smith has authored and edited several books including, Nonprofits for Hire: The Welfare State in the Age of Contracting (with Michael Lipsky), Governance and Regulation in the Third Sector: International Perspectives (co-edited with Susan Phillips) and, most recently, Nonprofits and Advocacy: Engaging Community and Government in an Era of Retrenchment (The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2014) (co-edited with Robert Pekkanen and Yutaka Tsujinaka). He is currently president of the International Society for Third Sector Research. Email ››  View CV ››


Betsy Super
Deputy Director

Betsy Super serves as Deputy Director. She oversees and leads development of programs supporting research excellence and broadening participation in the profession, including APSA awards, the Centennial Center for Political Science & Public Affairs, Diversity & Inclusion Programs, International Programs, small research grants and travel grants. She also leads APSA’s research on the profession and supports a number of governance committees, including the Nominating Committee, the Committee on Professional Ethics, Rights and Freedoms, and Ad Hoc Committee on Governance Reform. Prior to joining APSA, Super worked at the University of Edinburgh on an ESRC-funded project investigating party positioning on immigration and EU membership, and was the first project officer of the Public Policy Network. Her research has been published in Scandinavian Political Studies, Acta Politica, and Environmental Politics, among others. Super received her BA in Government with honors from Dartmouth College and PhD in Politics from the University of Edinburgh, UK. Email ››


Dan Gibson
Senior Director, Communications and Marketing

Dan Gibson serves as APSA senior director of communications and marketing. He is responsible for APSA media/press relations, branding, and web communications. He is a veteran communications and marketing professional. He has worked primarily in the association field for more than 20 years using his expertise to deliver clear, consistent messaging and promote the interests of organizations and their memberships. His travels include the IEEE Computer Society, United Rentals, the American Gas Association, the National Association of Workforce Boards, the International Franchise Association, and the Society of Competitive Intelligence Professionals. He received a BA Communications from Salisbury University in Salisbury, Maryland and has received numerous awards in marketing and communications. Email ››


Kimberly Mealy
Senior Director, Diversity and Inclusion Programs
Kimberly A. Mealy, is the APSA senior director of diversity and inclusion. She engages in strategic program development in the areas of diversity, inclusion and accessibility, professional ethics, mentoring, and recruitment and retention of individuals from historically underrepresented groups. She also serves as the staff lead for the APSA Committee on Professional Ethics, Rights and Freedoms and six of the APSA Status Committees. During her time at APSA, Kimberly has supported two APSA presidential task forces (Political Science in the 21st Century (2010) and Negotiating Agreement in Politics (2013)) and directed the annual APSA Teaching and Learning Conference (2017-2014). Prior to joining APSA in 2007, Kimberly taught in the political science department at Wellesley College, as a teaching fellow and a visiting assistant professor. She earned her PhD in political science and public policy from Indiana University, where she directed mentoring and professional development programs for the Office of the Dean for Women’s Affairs and taught courses in political science. Most recently, Kimberly  designed and implemented  the development of the annual meetings ombuds resource (2017) and created the association-wide RESPECT campaign (2018). In May of 2019, Kimberly published a co-authored piece in Diverse: Issues in Higher Education entitled “Social Justice in Action: Creating a Climate of RESPECT at Associational Meetings”. She regularly consults on association resource development in the areas of diversity and inclusion, sexual harassment, professional climate, and the role and structure of the organizational ombuds.  Email ››


Larry Burner
Director, Finance & Administration
Email ››  






Tianrui Cai
Assistant Director, Finance
Tianrui (Rina) Cai serves as the Assistant Director of Finance and Administration team. She supports the Director of Finance and Administration in supervising and carrying out responsibilities of the finance team, including but not limited to Accounts Payables, Accounts Receivables, Financial Analysis and Management, Reconciliations and Reports etc. She collaborates with all departments in daily financial process. Prior to joining APSA, she earned an MA in Accounting from the George Washington University in 2015 and a BA in Business Administration from the Ocean University of China. She worked as a tax preparer at DC EITC Campaign (IRS VITA Program) and a finance intern at Relief International. She keeps an open mind and enjoys travelling, cooking, yoga and classical music.Email ››

Nicole Price 
Accounting Manager
Nicole Price supports APSA’s financial processing, analysis, reporting, and policy functions in her role as Accounting Manager. She brings fifteen years of nonprofit finance, contracts and operations experience, working under a variety of funding environments, from other Washington, DC-based nonprofit organizations including Shakespeare Theatre Company, Environmental Working Group, and Consortium for Ocean Leadership. Nicole enjoys gardening, theater, true crime podcasts, and spending time with her pit bull, Gidget, and two cats, Pop and Iggi. She holds a BA in Government and Politics, with a minor in Philosophy, from the University of Maryland. Email ››

Congressional Fellowship Program

Meghan McConaughey
Director, Congressional Fellowship Program

Meghan McConaughey serves as Director of the Congressional Fellowship Program. She leads all aspects of the Congressional Fellowship Program, including supporting fellows in preparing for, securing, and being successful in their placements; organizing the fellow recruitment and selection process; and managing relationships with program partners and host offices. She is always happy to connect with potential fellows, hosts, partners, or alumni. She also provides support for APSA governance logistics and organization. Meghan has a PhD in political science and an MPP from Georgetown University.  Email ››

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Jessica Keefe
Program Manager, Research Grants

Jessica Keefe serves as the program manager for research grants. In her role, she oversees the day-to-day operations of the APSA Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Grant program. Prior to joining APSA, Jessica received a BA in history and political science from Providence College, and an MA in political science from the George Washington University. Jessica is currently a PhD candidate at the George Washington University. Jessica grew up in Rhode Island and enjoys cooking, the band Rush, and taking long walks with her dog, Bear.  Email ››

Contact Lara Jolicoeur, Program Assistant for CFP and International Programs, for questions on the Congressional Fellowship Program Email ›› 
Centennial Center


Amanda Grigg, 
Director, Centennial Center for Political Science and Public Affairs
Amanda Grigg serves as the Director of the Centennial Center for Political Science and Public Affairs. She leads all aspects of the Centennial Center mission, operations, and program development, including Centennial Center research grants, Visiting Scholar and Pracademic Fellowship Programs, and teaching workshops in Washington, DC, as well as supporting the New Partnerships for Progress Presidential Task Force. Prior to joining APSA, she taught in the political science department at the University of Michigan, where she worked closely with first generation student programs. Amanda earned her BA with high honors in political science and women’s studies from the University of Michigan and her PhD in political science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. email ››

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Bennett Grubbs
Editor, Political Science Education Website
Bennett l. Grubbs serves as editor in the Centennial Center for Political Science and Public Affairs. He manages and curates APSA Educate, the soon-to-be launched online-library showcasing exceptional teaching materials and resources, peer-reviewed research on political science higher education and timely discussions on innovative practices in political science learning. Prior to joining APSA, Bennett taught at both the New School’s Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts and the City College of New York’s Colin Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership. He has presented research on American politics at multiple annual meetings of the American Political Science Association. Bennett earned his BA in political science from Le Moyne College and his MA in political science from Northern Arizona University. He is currently a PhD candidate in the Department of Politics at the New School for Social Research, where he is completing a PhD thesis on the course of progressive reform in early 21st century American politics. email ››


Zainab Alam
Program Assistant, Centennial Center

Zainab Alam assists the Centennial Center with their research grant programs. She is currently also a PhD candidate in comparative politics and women in politics at Rutgers University, where her dissertation focuses on digital democracy in South Asia. Prior to her work at APSA, she worked for a public policy leadership education program at Douglass Residential College, a women’s college at the Rutgers–New Brunswick campus. Zainab also holds an MS from New York University, where her research focused on peacebuilding initiatives in Pakistan. email ››



Abby Paulson
Manager, Government Relations & Public Engagement

Abby Paulson is coordinator for Government Relations and Public Engagement. Abby joined APSA in 2016 after completing her MSC in politics and communication at the London School of Economics and Political Science. Prior to her graduate studies, Abby worked with a coalition of organizations dedicated to government accountability and transparency. She earned a Bachelor’s degree at Ithaca College, where she also found a love of rowing. email ››


Communications & Marketing


Karima D. Scott
Director, Communications & Marketing
Karima Scott serves as the Director of the Communications and Marketing department. She is responsible for all communications and marketing efforts of the association including branding and promotion of APSA program initiatives, managing and monitoring of the association website and social media channels, implementation of new marketing materials and campaigns, as well as serving as one of the association’s layout and design specialist. She supports and collaborates with all departments and teams to best serve APSA members. Prior to joining APSA in late 2013, Karima served as an AmeriCorp Public Ally after receiving her BA from George Mason University where she studied media communications, sociology and theater. Karima is a Washington, D.C. native. She enjoys live entertainment, traveling, art, and painting. Email ››


Clarissa Westphal Nogueira
Communications & Web Services Specialist
Clarissa Westphal Nogueira is the Communications & Web Services Specialist. She serves as technical support to staff and members, providing both web and database maintenance for the APSA Website as well as related pages. As part of the Communications team, she works and assists on projects relating to this area. Prior to joining APSA in 2018, she worked at the Inter-American Development Bank as the Web Editor Assistant for the Retirees Association, in charge of website updates, graphic design projects and translations. Clarissa earned her degree in Graphic, Web and Industrial design at Universidade do Sul de Santa Catarina (UNISUL) in Florianopolis, Brazil. Born in D.C and growing up in Argentina, she considers many cities to be her home and enjoys reading, scrapbooking and videogames. Email ››



Jason Sapia
Development Director
Jason Sapia works with APSA members and institutional partners who wish to support the Association’s programs. He has worked primarily in the association field and joined APSA from the Society for Neuroscience. Contact Jason with any questions about donating to APSA or becoming an exhibitor, advertiser, or sponsor at the APSA Annual Meeting.   Email››


Julia Walters
Awards and Development Manager
Julia Walters provides administrative support to a wide range of APSA awards, grants, and fellowships. She acts as the primary contact for travel grants to the APSA annual meeting and TLC. Prior to joining APSA in 2017, Julia received a BA in Public Policy and Peace, War, and Defense from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Julia is a native Arlingtonian who enjoys food trucks and college basketball. Email ››

Diversity and Inclusion Programs

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Jasmine Scott
Diversity and Inclusion Programs Manager
Jasmine Scott (she/her) serves as the program manager for diversity and inclusion programs. In her role, she supports programs including the Ralph Bunche Summer Institute, Minority Fellows Program, Minority Student Recruitment Program, and APSA Mentoring Program. Prior to joining ASPA, Jasmine worked at NASPA – Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education supporting member engagement and equity and inclusion programs including the NASPA Undergraduate Fellows Program (NUFP), the Center for Women, and the Equity, Inclusion, and Social Justice Division. Jasmine earned her MSEd in Higher Education and Student Affairs from Indiana University and her BS in Telecommunication from the University of Florida.  Email ››


International Programs


Andrew Stinson
Director, International Programs
Andrew Stinson leads APSA’s efforts to engage with political science communities across the world. This includes management and planning for the Asia and MENA Workshops, as well as various collaborative projects with other national political science associations, area-studies associations, universities, research institutes, and scholars. Before joining APSA in 2011, Andrew taught English in Kazakhstan as a Peace Corps Volunteer and supported several non-profit efforts in early-childhood education and American voluntourism. He has a MA in International Studies from Rhodes University in South Africa and a BA in Political Science and History from Gettysburg College, PA. Andrew currently lives with his family in Guilford, CT.  Email ››

Ahmed Morsy
Manager, MENA Project

Ahmed Morsy is a member of the International Programs team where he manages the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) project. Over the past 6 years, he was the MENA project consultant at APSA. Previously Ahmed held positions at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, National Democratic Institute and consulted for numerous organizations and institutions. He received his PhD in International Relations from the University of St Andrews. His research interests include foreign and security policies in the Middle East as well as political reform in the Arab world. His work has been published by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, the Middle East Institute and the Atlantic Council among others.  Email ››

Lara Jolicoeur
Program Assistant for CFP and International Programs

Lara joined APSA in 2020 as the program assistant for the International and Congressional Fellowship Programs. Lara received a BA in International Relations and Chinese studies from Hampshire College in 2019, where she focused on Ethnic Minority Identity in China. Lara is originally from Redondo Beach, California and enjoys traveling, baking, and attending concerts.  Email ››

Meetings & Events


Ashley Vande Bunte
Director, Meetings and Events
Ashley Vande Bunte is the Director of Meetings and Events. She organizes and executes the Annual Meeting and the Teaching & Learning Conference. Prior to joining APSA in 2013, Ashley managed exhibits and registration at the Retail Industry Leaders Association for four years and studied International Relations at Grand Valley State University. Ashley enjoys traveling,  learning new languages, reading about meteorology, and exploring the local area with her husband and son Email ››



Kristin Kessler
Meetings Manager

Kristin Kessler serves as the Meetings Manager. Her responsibilities include programing and logistics for APSA’s Annual Meeting, conferences and small meetings. Prior to joining APSA in 2019, Kristin managed various meeting logistics, including exhibits and the call for abstracts, at the American Association of Colleges of Nursing for five years. She received a BA in Sociology from Elon University. A native to the DC metro area, Kristin enjoys live music, rock climbing and traveling. Email>>



Casey Harrigan
Director, Member Services
Casey Harrigan is the Associate Director for Member Services. Prior to joining APSA in 2017, Casey received a BS in Political Science from Towson University and an MPA, with a focus in health policy, from Baruch College. Casey is originally from New York, in her spare time she enjoys traveling, cooking, and refinishing antique furniture. Email ››

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Brenna Dames
Program Associate, Member Services

Brenna Dames is the Program Associate for Member Services. Prior to joining APSA in 2020, she worked at Dance Place, a DC based arts non-profit where she served as the Education Manager, a teaching artist and a dancer. She received her BA in Political Science as well as her BFA in Dance Performance and Choreography from Elon University in 2015. Brenna is originally from Maryland and enjoys dancing, traveling, and finding the perfect piece of pizza. Email ››

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Nathan Bader
Operations Assistant

Nathan Bader began in August 2019 as the Operations Assistant for the APSA office. Nathan received a BA in History and Nonprofit Administration with a minor in International Affairs from Dakota Wesleyan University, where he was named the McGovern Scholar. He will graduate in May 2021 with a MA in Statecraft and National Security Affairs from The Institute of World Politics. Nathan is originally from South Dakota and in his spare time enjoys traveling, trivia and science fiction movies.Email ››

Professional Development Programs & Services


Tanya Schwarz
Director, Teaching & Learning
Tanya Schwarz, APSA's Director of Teaching & Learning, manages APSA's programs in teaching and learning, professional development, departmental services, and civic engagement. Before joining APSA in 2018, Schwarz taught political science at Hollins University, Loyola Marymount University, and California Institute of the Arts. From 2016-2017, she was a Visiting Research Fellow at the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies at the University of Notre Dame where she completed her book on transnational peacebuilding. Schwarz has also published several journal articles focused on pedagogy, international NGOs, and interpretive methods. Schwarz received a PhD in political science from the University of California, Irvine, a BA and MA in political science from the University of California, Riverside, and an AA from Saddleback Community College.  Email ››

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Lulu U. Onakpoya
Program Assistant, Academic and Professional Development
Lulu assists the Academic and Professional Development team with program design and implementation. She also supports political science departments’ research into best practices for promoting civic and community engagement on campuses within the United States through APSA’s RAISE the Vote campaign. Lulu received her LLB, Law from the Obafemi Awolowo University, Nigeria and holds an LLM from Michigan State University. She is currently studying for a PhD in Political Science with concentrations in international relations and comparative politics at the University of Houston. Lulu is a published author. Her varied research interests are in the areas of trade policy and development, financial technology and conflict, and culturally-inclusive educational technology. When she is not working or conducting research, Lulu enjoys mentoring young leaders and at-risk youth.
Email ››

Journals & Publications


Jon Gurstelle
Director of Publishing
Jon Gurstelle has spent over a decade in academic publishing at Blackwell Publishing, Springer, and most recently, John Wiley & Sons. He spent many years as a book and journal editor in Political Science at Springer and was most recently an Executive Editor for Statistics at Wiley. He has been a regular attendee at the Annual Meeting since 2008 and was active in several publishing industry groups including the AAP’s Professional and Scholarly Publishing division. Jon is based at the APSA Headquarters and oversees the 21 APSA and affiliated journals as well as the other association publications including books and brochures. Email ››



Celina Szymanski
Senior Managing Editor, PS: Political Science and Politics
Celina Szymanski is the managing editor of PS: Political Science and Politics. She has worked as journal assistant under interim editors Phillip Ardoin and Paul Gronke of Appalachian State University since August 2014. Formerly, she worked as journal assistant to New Political Science: A Journal of Politics and Culture. She graduated from Frostburg State University in 2013 where she served on the President’s Leadership Circle. She will graduate from Appalachian State University in May with a master’s degree in political science concentrating in environmental politics and policy. Celina enjoys travelling as well as kayaking and hiking in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of Boone, North Carolina. Email ››


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Henry Chen
Publishing Associate, PS: Political Science and Politics
Henry Chen is the Publishing Associate for PS: Political Science and Politics. Before joining APSA in 2019, he conducted independent research in Durban, South Africa through The Fulbright Program. He holds a BA in History from Northwestern (2018), where he also studied Asian American Studies and Gender & Sexuality Studies. Henry is originally from Denver, Colorado, and enjoys hiking, cooking, and illustrating in his spare time.  Email ››


Dragana Svraka
Managing Editor,
American Political Science Review
Dragana Svraka is the managing editor of American Political Science Review. She earned Ph.D. in political science from the University of Florida, where she studied comparative politics, focusing on ethnic politics in Europe. She lived and studied in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Italy, Netherlands, and the United States. For three years, she worked as an editorial assistant for Perspectives on Politics.


Erin McGrath
Research Manager
Erin McGrath began in February 2019 as Research Manager for APSA. She leads research efforts for APSA, coordinating research on all aspects of the profession, and supporting research efforts across all departments and programs at APSA. Prior to joining APSA, McGrath was a post-doctoral researcher in computational social science at the University of Maryland’s National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START) on an NSF-funded project to predict contentious activity using non-traditional sources of data on grievances (e.g. social media data, unstructured text data). Research on this project has been published by the Journal of Conflict Resolution (2018) and in outlets in other disciplines, e.g. computer science and data science. McGrath completed her Ph.D. (2015) in Public and International Affairs at the University of Pittsburgh. Her training in Turkish, in-depth fieldwork in Turkey, and dissertation research on authoritarianism and Turkish constitutional politics was funded by a State Department scholarship (2009) and is forthcoming from Cambridge University Press (2019). McGrath has an MPP (2005) from Central European University in Budapest, Hungary, where she focused on social policy in old and new Europe, and a BBA (2000) from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, where she focused on corporate social responsibility. She lives in Cleveland Park with her partner Paul, their four children, and a GSP puppy named Blitzen. Email ››