Alumni News

The Department, its faculty and your fellow alumni would love to hear from you and what you have been up to since leaving UB. Drop a note here so that you can stay in touch with the Department and your classmates. Drop us a note. Just click on UB Political Science Alumni News. The Department also welcomes your support of our mission to become a center of excellence in the study and teaching of political science. Your financial support would be especially welcomed in this period of severe budget cutbacks by the state.

Distinguished Alumnus Award

This year the Department named its third recipient of the Distinguished Alumnus Award. The award was created several years ago to recognize the many achievements of our alumni. The 2011 recipient is Professor Edward G. Carmines of Indiana University. Ted Carmines is a 1975 Ph.D. from the Department.

The first two recipients of this award were Professor Harvey Starr and Professor Karen O’Connor. Read more about the award on the News and Events page.

Professor Starr was recently voted president-elect of the International Studies Association (ISA). Read more about it here.

Alumni on Dean’s Advisory Council

Two alumni of the Department are currently members of the Dean Bruce McCombe’s Advisory Council. They are Kenneth Fuchs (PhD) and Paul Nussbaum (BA, 1967). Kenneth Fuchs is Senior Vice President and Litigation Counsel of Prudential Equity Group, LLC, formerly known as Prudential Securities Incorporated. Paul Nussbaum is a principal partner in the Waramaug Partners Group, a private real estate and special situations equity firm.


News by Class

Class of 2008

(posted Feb. 3, 2011)

Jared M. Ochs (MA, 08) is Legislative Assistant to the Florida’s Speaker of the House, Representative Richard Corcoran.

(posted Sept 16, 2009)

Joseph Zingale (BA, 08) has been a Town Administrator for Rutland, Vermont for the past 25 years. Joseph believes that “local government is truly democracy in action.”

(posted Mar. 8, 2012)
Maria Larisa Godenciuc Dubovici (BA, 08) graduated from the University at Buffalo with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science in February of 2008. She received her MA in Urban Studies from CUNY at Queens College in February of 2012. She currently works at CUNY at Queens College.

Class of 2006

(posted Sept. 5, 2006)
David Piper (MA, 06) is a Telefund Coordinator, part of the annual giving professional staff for Virginia Tech.

Class of 2005

(posted Sept. 5, 2006)
Scott Schmidt (joint BA w/Communication, 05) has moved to Washington, DC and is currently employed by the House of Representatives Committee of Energy and Commerce as Energy & Environment Assistant to the Energy and Air Quality Subcommittee as well as the Environment and Hazardous Waste Subcommittee. The committee itself is the oldest in the US government at 210 years old giving it one of the largest jurisdictions on oversight in the federal legislature. Additionally, Scott has started classes toward his Masters in Public Administration at George Mason University and will graduate with his MA in Spring ’08.

(posted Aug. 31, 2005)
Marcelo Phillips (BA, 05) will be attending The University of Connecticut School of Law in Fall 2005.

(posted Feb. 18, 2005)
Bruce Sherman (BA, 05) is currently working as a Planner for the city of Dover, Delaware.

(posted Dec. 13, 2004)
Kathleen Hennessy (BA, 05) has accepted a position with the National Republican Congressional Committee and will relocate to the Washington DC area in January.

Class of 2004

(posted Sept 8, 2008)

Jaan Soone (BA, 04) is currently a Policy Adviser at the Office of Members of European Parliment.

(posted Feb. 18, 2005)
Jennifer Tuttle (BA, 04) is currently the Program Director for the Sierra Club Rhode Island Chapter.

(posted Sept. 18, 2006)
Keith Smith (BA, 04) was working as a Congressional Aide to Senator George Allen (R-VA) and has become the Director of Research at the National Association of Manufacturers.

(posted Nov. 17, 2004)
Jaan Soone (BA, 04) is currently a Senior Officer for the Department of International Co-Operation, Ministry of the Environment of Estonia.

Class of 2003

(posted Sept. 25, 2006)
Nils G. B. Tyssebotn (BA, 03) is currently studying for his Masters of Science in Political Economy at the Norwegian School of Management BI, Oslo, Norway.

(posted Nov. 18, 2005)
Lisa Milano (BA, 03) is currently working in Manhattan as a Corporate Litigation Paralegal at Kaye Scholer LLP and living in New York, NY.

Dan Weinstein (BA, 03) is currently getting a Masters degree in defense and strategic studies at Southwest Missouri State University.

(posted March 31, 2008)
Joseph Stefko (Ph.D. 03, MA 99, BA 97) has stepped down as Acting Executive Director of the Buffalo Fiscal Stability Authority to join CGR Inc.(located in Rochester, NY) as Director of Public Finance.

(posted March 22, 2006)
Elizabeth Rossiello (BA, 03) is graduating from the Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA) with an M.A. in International Finance and Business this May.

(posted April 10, 2006)
Margaret Okada (BA ’03) is currently living in Forest Hills, NY.

Class of 2002

(posted Oct. 23, 2006)
Naniette Coleman (Minor, 02) has a new job working for the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative. Naniette is the Deputy Director for Southeast Asia and the Pacific.

(posted May 30, 2006)
Jason Ascher (BA, 2/02) just started working for the Kansas Democratic Party doing candidate recruitment and development for the State Legislative races.

(posted Oct. 4, 2002)
Jaeyong Chang (BA, 2/02) is currently a graduate student at the School of Diplomacy and International Relations. Jaeyong currently lives in Orange, New Jersey.

(posted Nov. 14, 2002)
Richard Feldman (BA, 2/02) is currently a researcher for the AFL-CIO in Washington DC.

(posted Oct. 9, 2002)
Maria Larisa Godenciuc (MA, 02) is now a graduate student here at the University at Buffalo, and will graduate this December. Friends wishing to contact Maria can email her at

(posted Nov. 27, 2002)
Mirai Maruo (BA, 9/02 in Political Science and Social Interdisciplinary in International Studies) is now a graduate student in Brussels, Belgium.

(posted Oct. 23, 2002)
Rosanna Musso (BA [IR], 1/02) now resides in Clarence Center, New York.

(posted Sept. 11, 2007)
Shanise Nicole Kent (BA, 02) graduated in 2006 from the University at Buffalo Law School and Business School with a dual degree, JD/MBA. She currently is the Project Coordinator of the McNair Scholars Program and an Adjunct Political Science Lecturer at Binghamton University.

(posted Dec. 13, 2004)
Bethany Cap (BA, 02) graduated in May 2004 from George Washington University with an MA in International Affairs and is now working as a research assistant for the International Union of Police Associations.

Class of 2001

(posted Nov. 15, 2011)
Timothy Blauvelt (Ph. D, 01) As of March 2011 was appointed Associate
Professor of Soviet and Post-Soviet Studies at Ilia State University
in Tbilisi in the Republic of Georgia. Also continuing pervious position as Country Director in Georgia for American Councils for International Education.

(posted Oct. 4, 2002)
Russell Davidson (BA, 5/01) is now a second year graduate student working towards a PhD at Ohio State University. Russell presently lives in Columbus, Ohio.

(posted Oct. 9, 2002)
Belinda Scerri (BA [honors] & Bachelor’s degree in Communications, 01) is presently a business consultant in Melbourne, Australia where she currently resides.

(posted Feb. 19, 2004)
Scott L. Kramer (BA, 5/01) will be receiving a J.D. from The Delaware School of Law at Widener University in May of 2004.

(posted Aug. 9, 2004)
Priyank Shah (BA 5/01) is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Sociology at The Ohio State University.

Class of of 2000

(posted on Oct. 15, 2002)
Julie Garuccio (BA, 00) is now a Program Associate for the Network of East-West Women-International Women’s Human Rights Organization and calls Washington, D.C. her home. She graduated from George Washington University, Elliott School of International Affairs in 2002 with a Masters Degree in International Development Studies. Presently, she is working on women’s legal and economic rights issues in Central and Eastern Europe, the Newly Independent States and the Russian Federation.

(posted Jan. 13, 2004)
Edyta Malinowski (BA, 5/00) works and lives in Washington, D.C.

(posted Nov. 8, 2005)
David E. Staveley (MA/Ph.D., 00) is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science and International Studies at SUNY College at Brockport. He is Director of the International Studies Program.

Class of 1999

(posted Feb. 6, 2003)
Claudia Salalzar (BA, 1999) is currently a law student.

Class of 1998

(posted Dec. 13, 2002)
Christopher Prendergast (BA, 98) Graduated from Washington & Lee University School of Law–JD (2001) and is now at the Georgetown University School of Business–MBA (2003).

Class of 1997

(posted Dec. 16, 2002)
Steve Overbeck (BA, 97) currently works as the Assistant to the Superintendent of Highways and resides in Tonawanda, New York.

Class of 1996

(posted Sept. 12, 2011)

Mark Chadsey (PhD, 96) has been named the Chair of the Department of Political Science and International Studies at the College of Brockport, SUNY. Mark also received his BA at UB before earning his JD at Columbia University in 1986.

(posted Oct. 8, 2002)
Patrick Tierney (BA, 96) is now an attorney and lives in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia.

(posted Nov. 8, 2007)

Jordan Wishy (BA, 96)

has completed a doctorate in political science at the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy, University at Albany and is researching state and local government at the same institution.

Class of 1995

(posted on Jan. 2, 2008)
Amilcar Antonio Barreto (MA, 91, JD, 93, Ph.D, 95) has just stepped down as Director of Graduate Programs in the Political Science Department and has accepted a position as Interim Associate Dean and Interim Director of the Graduate School in the College of Arts and Sciences at Northeastern University (October 2007).  He is also one of four faculty members awarded Northeastern University’s “Excellence in Teaching Award” in 2005.

(posted Oct. 7, 2002)
Timothy Blauvelt (MA, 95) is currently a Fulbright Lecturer at the Asia and Africa Institute, and resides in Tbilisi, Republic of Georgia.

(posted Mar. 24, 2004)
Paul J. Cornish is currently an Assistant Professor of Political Science at Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Michigan. He recently married Mary Arnold, who teaches kindergarten at a local school. They are expecting their first child in September.

(posted Nov. 19, 2007)

Matthew W. Smith (PhD, 95) is an attorney and resides in Williamsburg, Virginia.

Class of 1994

(posted on Oct. 15, 2002)
Nancy Pellegrini (BA & BA in English, 6/94) has been largely living abroad in England, Ireland, Korea and now China; although she calls Smithtown, New York her permanent home. She works as an English teacher and freelance writer. Nancy has done a lot of traveling, and published a book on Korean culture, called Through Western Eyes: Korea. She is now working on a book on Chinese culture, as well as articles dealing with living in China.

(posted on Mar. 5, 2004)
Tomislav Djurdjevich (BA, 94) is currently an IT Operations Specialist in New York City.

(posted July 15, 2009)

Tabitha M. Ngwashi  (BA, ’94) has just graduated with a Master of Science degree from Bank Street College.  Tabitha returned to the U.S.A. after teaching for the past eight years at an international school in Zambian, Africa. Previously, upon graduation with her Bachelor’s, she was a teacher for Americorps in Shreveport, L.A. and Bronx, N.Y.

Class of 1993

(posted March 1, 2006)
Michael Albert (BA, ’93) received a MS in Research Methods from Southern CT State University several years ago. He is working in New Haven Public Schools Department Research, Evaluation, and Assessment as a Data Analyst Assistant.

(posted March 9, 2006)
Thom Kraus (BA, ’93) was named the President and CEO of the Niagara USA Chamber of Commerce, Niagara County’s leading business advocacy group representing over 1,200 members. He and his wife, Cheryl, reside in Lockport, NY with their daughter, Mariana, who was born in September 2005.

Class of 1992

(posted on Jan. 22, 2004)
Denise DeGarmo (BA, 92) completed her Ph.D. at the University of Michigan (2001). She is currently an Assistant Professor at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and she has a book contract with Rutledge Press for her book: International Environmental Treaties and State Behavior: Factors Influencing Cooperation. The book is expected to be out in late 2004 or early 2005.

(posted on Jan. 22, 2004)
Alicia Malin (BA, 92) was promoted to Assistant Professor at Meharry Medical College after a postdoctoral research fellowship at Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN.

Class of 1990

(posted on Septemeber 22, 2009)

John Dedie (MA, ’90) has been teaching as an adjuct for over 16 years. In June, he was named instructor in Political Scinece at the

Community Colleges of Baltimore County (CCBC) Essex.

Class of 1980

(posted on Sept. 24, 2007)

Ronald Balter (BA, ’80) is currently an attorney in New York City, representing injured workers before the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board.  He is a past Chair of the New York State Bar Association’s Tort Insurance and Compensation Law’s Workers’ Compensation Division, on the Board of Directors of the Injured Workers Bar Association, and is Treasurer of the Workers Compensation Alliance.

Class of 1969

(posted on August 26, 2009)

Lal Goel (Ph.D., ’69) was the FIRST student to receive a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University at Buffalo. Currently, Lal is a professor at UWF. .

Class of 1962

(posted on Sept. 29, 2008)

Carol L. Dean (BA, 62) is currently the owner of Dean of Discovery, located in California.