Leadership and Staff

Public Administration and International Affairs staff members are dedicated to student service. We strive to create a warm, friendly, and collegial environment that fosters the development of meaningful connections among all members of the Maxwell community. Our most important goal is the academic and professional success of our students.

Central Leadership and Administration

Central Leadership and Staff
Robert Bifulco, Jr.

Robert Bifulco, Jr. Associate Dean and Chair
rbifulco@maxwell.syr.edu

Dr. Robert Bifulco is the Associate Dean, Chair and Professor for the Public Administration and International Relations department at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs.

He is an accomplished teacher and scholar, holding appointments as Senior Research Associate with the Center for Policy Research (CPR) and Education Finance and Accountability Program (EFAP) at the Maxwell School, and as co-editor of the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management.

In addition, he was affiliated with CALDER and Center for Education Policy Analysis (CEPA) at the University of Connecticut. He has been fortunate to have his research supported by the Smith Richardson Foundation, the Connecticut State Department of Education and by the New York State Education Department.

Prior to Syracuse University, he taught at the University of Connecticut where he received the Distinguished Professor award. Dr. Bifulco has taught courses on public budgeting, state and local finance, economic analysis, education policy, research methods, quantitative analysis, and program evaluation.

His research focuses on the evaluation of educational policies and programs generally, with specific interests in the interactions of school segregation, school policies, and student outcomes. He has also conducted research on the measurement of school performance, educational resource disparities, and peer effects.

He has published articles evaluating whole-school reform, school accountability programs, charter schools, magnet schools and other forms of school choice which have appeared in the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, Education Finance and Policy, and the American Economic Journal–Economic Policy among others.

He received his PhD and MPA in Public Administration from Syracuse University along with an MA and BA in Philosophy from Rice and Bucknell Universities, respectively.

Stuart Brown

Stuart Brown
Vice Chair
ssbrown@maxwell.syr.edu

Stuart Brown is Director of the Master of Arts in International Relations (MAIR) degree program and Vice Chair of the Department of Public Administration and International Affairs (PAIA).

He is a senior research associate of Maxwell’s Moynihan Institute of Global Affairs and directs the Institute’s Mapping Global Insecurity Project. In addition to prior academic positions at Smith College and Georgetown University, he served as desk economist in the European Department of the International Monetary Fund (1993-1995) where he participated in negotiating macroeconomic stabilization programs for transitional economies in Eastern Europe.

He was also chief economist and head of sovereign bond research for Eastern Europe, Africa and the Middle East for BNP-Paribas and Bank of America in London (1995-2002). He is the founding Director of the Pew Economic Freedom Fellow’s program, a pioneering training program for emerging market leaders.

In his classes and research, Professor Brown specializes in international macroeconomics and international political economy. He is the author of The Future of Global Power: Delusions of Decline, published by Palgrave MacMillan. He is the co-author of Comparing Economic System: A Political-Economic Approach published by Harcourt, Brace and Jovanovich and editor of Transnational Transfers and Global Development.

He has also published widely on the transition from socialism to capitalism in Central and Eastern Europe. Brown is currently completing an inter-disciplinary book project with political scientist Margaret Hermann titled Transnational Crime and Black Spots: Rethinking Sovereignty and the Global Economy, to be published by Palgrave MacMillan in 2018.

Heather M. Macknik

Heather M. Macknik
Budget Manager
hmmackni@maxwell.syr.edu

Heather serves as the Budget Manager and works closely with the Associate Dean on the overall management of the department's fiscal resources. As the department's human resources point of contact, she assists faculty, staff and students on issues related to payroll, departmental searches, staff/student hires and promotion and tenure of the faculty. She has over site of the administrative staff in the office and provides direction on all events for the department including MPA Convocation, MPA Colloquium and IR Orientation. 

Before coming to Maxwell, Heather worked in higher education for 20+ years, primarily as an Admissions Director. Since joining Maxwell in 2016, she has served as a Senator for the University Senate, is a member of the Senate Honorary Degree Committee, Chair of the Maxwell Staff Council Work Group, Chair of the Maxwell Staff Recognition Committee, Lead Facilitator for SEM100 and emceed at the 20th anniversary of Maxwell's annual staff training day--MaxPro. She holds a master’s degree in higher education with a focus in enrollment management. 

MPA, MAIR, MPA and MAIR Dual Degrees, Public Diplomacy

MPA, MAIR, MPA and MAIR Dual Degrees, Public Diplomacy
Christine Omolino

Christine Omolino
Director, Admission and Financial Aid
comolino@maxwell.syr.edu

Christine is responsible for marketing, recruitment, admission and financial aid for the MPA and MA IR programs. She has a great deal of experience in graduate student program administration, student services, as well as the admissions process.  She enjoys helping others learn how to prepare for and submit a competitive application for graduate study. A graduate of Maxwell’s MPA program herself, she loves working with the next generation of young professionals dedicated to careers in public policy, administration and international affairs and helping them to move forward with their academic and professional career goals. 

Christine also holds an MSW from Syracuse University and a BA from SUNY Potsdam, Christine served a three year term on the Charles B. Rangel International Affairs Graduate Fellowship Program (2011-14), and currently serves on the Thomas R. Pickering Selection Committee (2018- ) . She has provided pre-screening assistance for the Civil Society Leadership Awards (CSLA) with the Open Society Foundation, is a frequent "field and admissions expert" for Fulbright/IIE on discussion boards and webinars.  In 2016 she served as an applicant screening consultant for the prestigious Paul and Daisy Soros Fellowships for New Americans.

Follow Christine's Admissions Blog for more information on SU, the Maxwell School, the PAIA graduate programs, our admissions process and helpful application tips.

Michael Schneider

Michael Schneider
Director, Washington Public Diplomacy Program
mischnei@maxwell.syr.edu

Michael Schneider directs the Washington Public Diplomacy Program, which is a spring semester requirement for students enrolled in their second year of the dual MA in International Relations and MS in Public Relations Program, a joint initiative of Syracuse University's Maxwell School and the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications. Dr. Schneider also teaches in our fall semester Global Security & Development Program.

In the 1980s, Dr. Schneider was Deputy Associate and Acting Associate Director of USIA for policy and programs and served as USIA Liaison with the National Security Council. He was Senior Advisor to the Under Secretary of State in the mid-1990s.

He served as executive secretary of a panel of U.S. and international leaders who examined the Fulbright Exchange Program, and authored the report, Fulbright at Fifty, and a subsequent report to the State Department, Others' Open Doors. Dr. Schneider served as the Director of Maxwell-in-Washington until 2009.

Josh Kennedy

Josh Kennedy
Associate Director, Student Services
jjkenn01@maxwell.syr.edu

As Associate Director, Josh advises all PAIA department students on their academic and professional development while at Maxwell to prepare the next generation of public and international policy and management professionals. Josh holds a masters in international relations from the Maxwell School.

Isaac Olson

Isaac Olson
 Associate Director of Internships and Global Learning
ioolson@maxwell.syr.edu

Working with MA IR and MPA students, Isaac Olson assists all who are interested in pursuing international opportunities by advising on internships and career tracks, along with effective strategies for success in the global marketplace. He further coordinates MPA capstone projects with students and stakeholders from the local to international levels.

Prior to joining the Maxwell team, Isaac spent nine years living abroad in the Asia Pacific, mainly in Thailand and Korea, gaining first-hand knowledge of global careers in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. Isaac holds a master’s degree from Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok, Thailand.

ken dwyer

Ken Dwyer
Student Records Coordinator
kdwyer@maxwell.syr.edu

Our Student Records Coordinator, Ken Dwyer, maintains the department database and records for the graduate students. His main tasks involve Admissions where he processes applications, coordinates with the EMC and SCIS to see that our international student’s documents are in order for a smooth arrival. Ken also serves as administrative support to the faculty director of the PhD program in Public Administration. 

Open Position
Student Records Coordinator

This position is responsible for maintaining the student database and records for all current graduate students. As the primary resource for all of our current students, this person assists them with the logistics of their programs and especially with the final degree certification process, administrative forms, and academic procedures.

Kristi Vega

Kristi Vega
Office Coordinator, Assistant to Chair 
kjvega@maxwell.syr.edu

Kristi provides professional front office reception to the PAIA office suite, administrative support to the Chair, and back-up support to other members of the program’s team. Kristi brings 20 years of administrative management experience to the PAIA program.

 

EMPA, EMIR

EMPA, EMIR
Steven Lux

Steven Lux
sjlux@maxwell.syr.edu]
Director, Executive Education

Steven Lux is currently the Director of Executive Education at the Maxwell School, Steve is responsible for overseeing the School’s mid-career graduate degree programs (roughly 150 full and part-time students from thirty countries around the world) and developing and managing various executive management training for both domestic and international audiences. Steve also teaches graduate level courses at the Maxwell School on subjects related to non-governmental organizations and civil society.

Prior to his work with the Maxwell School, Steve spent 12 years designing and managing development programs in South East Asia across a range of topics including health (i.e. family planning, maternal and child health, HIV/AIDS, nutrition) and rural development (i.e. agricultural production, microcredit, small business development).

Starting as a World Teach volunteer in Thailand in 1991, Steve’s career path allowed him to live and work also in Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam and to become fluent in Thai and Vietnamese. Steve’s last assignment before returning to Syracuse University full-time in 2004 was as Regional Director of a Thai NGO, the Population and Community Development Association.

Steve also has experience as an information systems analyst while working for Computer Science Corporation (CSC) from 1989 – 1991. Steve is a graduate of Jamesville-Dewitt High School and his wife and three children are residents of DeWitt since 2003. Steven Lux has an AB degree in Economics from Harvard College (1989) and a MPA from the Maxwell School at Syracuse University (1997).

Margaret Lane

Margaret Lane
Assistant Director, Executive Education
melane02@maxwell.syr.edu

Margaret Lane serves as the Assistant Director of Executive Education Programs and the Director of the Humphrey Fellowship Program. She is the contact for admissions and financial aid for the EMIR in DC.

EMIR in DC

EMIR in DC
Mark Jacobson

Mark Jacobson
rmrjacobs@maxwell.syr.edu
Assistant Dean, Washington Programs

Assistant Dean for Washington Programs Mark R. Jacobson oversees year-round academic programs for Maxwell’s D.C. headquarters at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the #1-ranked think tank in the United States (University of Pennsylvania Global Go To Think Tank Index), where Maxwell serves approximately 200 undergraduate, graduate, and midcareer executive students each year.

A scholar-practitioner of foreign policy and national security, Jacobson most recently served as the John J. McCloy Professor of American Institutions and International Diplomacy at Amherst College and prior to that at Georgetown University’s Walsh School of Foreign Service. His teaching and research interests include the history of propaganda and political warfare as well as how identity groups have used military service for community validation in the United States.

Jacobson previously served in government in a number of roles as both a civil servant and political appointee, including as Special Assistant to the Secretary of the Navy, as the first Deputy NATO Senior Civilian Representative-Afghanistan and as a Presidential Management Intern. Jacobson also worked on the staff of the Senate Armed Services Committee and as a Senior Transatlantic Fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the United States. He is a veteran, having served in both the Army and Navy reserves with mobilizations to Bosnia and Afghanistan.

Jacobson holds degrees from the University of Michigan, King’s College (University of London), and The Ohio State University (from which he earned a PhD in military history).

Margaret Lane

Margaret Lane
Assistant Director, Executive Education
melane02@maxwell.syr.edu

Margaret Lane serves as the Assistant Director of Executive Education Programs and the Director of the Humphrey Fellowship Program. She is the contact for admissions and financial aid for the EMIR in DC.

Samantha Clemence

Samantha Clemence

Assistant Director, Washington Programs
saclemen@maxwell.syr.edu

Samantha manages the myriad administrative responsibilities of the Center, including financial and faculty/staff support elements of the office. She also advises students on career and internship opportunities in Washington DC. She helps bridge academic training at Maxwell with the practicalities of preparing for a global career. 

Melissa Morton

Melissa Morton
Program Coordinator
memorton@maxwell.syr.edu

Melissa Morton serves as a part-time Program Coordinator for Maxwell-in-Washington. She helps arrange our program schedule and class meetings, gather and disseminate information for you, as well as other administrative and logistics concerns. Melissa mainly works from home, but you will receive important messages and information from her electronically.

Patricia Tyson

Patricia Tyson
Program Coordinator
patyson@maxwell.syr.edu

Patricia Tyson serves as a part-time Program Coordinator for Maxwell-in-Washington. She helps administer the student apartments as well as a host of other administrative duties. Pat is a native of Washington and worked at the State Department for most of her career. She is a tremendous resource for information about the area, its history, and life in Washington. You will see Pat a couple of evenings per week at CSIS.

Online EMPA

Online EMPA
Nell S. Bartkowiak

Nell S. Bartkowiak
Director, EMPA Online Program
nsbartko@maxwell.syr.edu