Walker Gunning Executive Director
Walker J. Gunning is the executive director of CPOST. He was formerly the associate editor at Al-Monitor.com. Walker holds a MA and BA in Near Eastern Studies from NYU. He is a 2017 Truman National Security Project Political Fellow. He has worked on several independent and documentary films, including the Oscar-nominated documentary short “Killing in the Name.”
Alexandra Greiwe Research Director -Office of Naval Research Project
Alexandra (Allie) Greiwe is the Research Director of the Office of Naval Research project that will evaluate the effectiveness of U.S. “Over-the-Horizon” counterterrorism (CT) strategies, which substitute foreign troops for local ground allies and American air power. Through a quantitative and qualitative cross-case analysis of six CT campaigns in Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Afghanistan and Pakistan, CPOST’s research finds a strong link between gains and losses in a militant group’s territorial holdings and their attack strategy. Allie is currently co-authoring a book based off this research with Dr. Robert Pape and Julio Rivera. She holds a Master of Science in International Politics from Trinity College, Dublin and a B.A. in Political Science with a minor in Journalism from Wittenberg University. Her Trinity dissertation utilized CPOST’s SAD database and was titled “Examining the Nexus between Youth Unemployment, Foreign Occupation, and Suicide Terrorist Attacks: A Cross-Country Analysis.” Prior to her time in Ireland, Allie worked on Capitol Hill as assistant to the Chief of Staff and deputy scheduler in the office of U.S. Senator Rob Portman. She has also worked in Washington, D.C., at the Embassy of Ireland to the U.S. under Ambassador Michael Collins and at the National Young Leaders Conference (NYLC).
Alejandro Albanez Rivas Data Manager
Alejandro Albanez Rivas is the Data Manager at CPOST. His primary responsibility is to manage the collection, organization, analysis, and presentation of data produced by militant organizations, applying his skills to projects with domestic and international policy significance.
He was born and raised in Caracas, Venezuela. He received his Master in Public Policy from the Harris School at the University of Chicago in June 2016. Before his MPP, he worked as a Crime Analyst at the Sucre Mayor’s Office in Caracas. During that time, Alejandro evaluated the impact of the Hot Spot Homicide Reduction program, the flagship program at the Public Safety Department. He has also worked as a Data Analysis Coordinator at the Miranda Governor’s Office, where he designed a descriptive evaluation pilot study to assess the state government social policies’ political impact. Alejandro participated in several political campaigns in his home country, including two presidential races, performing data analysis and strategic planning.
His undergraduate dissertation was the study of the main factors associated with the fear of crime in the Sucre municipality, which by that time was the municipality with the second highest homicide rate in Caracas and its suburban areas. He completed his undergraduate studies in Sociology at the Universidad Católica Andrés Bello (Caracas, Venezuela). He enjoys biking, swimming, reading, and listening to music.
Keven Ruby Research Consultant
Keven Ruby is a research consultant and the former Research Director at CPOST. Keven joined CPOST in 2012 as a Post-Doc to lead CPOST’s team of graduate and undergraduate researchers working on a major eighteen-month study of militant-group targeting, completed in 2013. Keven has worked on a number of CPOST projects over the years, and is currently working on a book project on the targeting logics of militant groups. He built the first computerized version of the CPOST database in 2008, and was a major contributor the Sri Lanka chapter in Cutting the Fuse (2010). Keven earned his PhD in Political Science from the University of Chicago in 2012. He also holds an MA in International Affairs from George Washington University, and a BA in International Studies from the University of South Carolina at Columbia.
Elizabeth Jenkins Administrative Coordinator
Elizabeth Jenkins is the Administrative Coordinator at CPOST. Her primary responsibilities are to assist in the organization of conferences, media outreach, and overall office operations. Before joining CPOST she worked for Illinois State Representative Lisa Hernandez, 24th District, as a policy advisor and financial director from 2011 to 2014. During her time with the state representative she directed and executed numerous state and political events. Many of these events involved direct coordination with other organizations, including the Office of the Illinois Secretary of State, the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation and MacNeal Hospital. These major informational events addressed such issues as Illinois’ new driver’s license for undocumented residents, mortgage relief, and diabetes awareness. Elizabeth holds a B.A. in Political Science from Brigham Young University –Idaho (2009).
Julio Rivera Senior Research Analyst
Julio Rivera is a Senior Research Analyst at CPOST and a PhD Candidate at the University of Chicago. Julio joined CPOST in Fall 2015 and serves as a lead analyst on a two-year project funded by the Office of Naval Research evaluating the effectiveness of current U.S. counterterrorism (CT) strategies that substitute foreign troops for local ground allies and American air power. Through a quantitative and qualitative cross-case analysis of six CT campaigns in Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Afghanistan and Pakistan, CPOST’s research finds a strong link between gains and losses in a militant group’s territorial holdings and their attack strategy. Julio is currently co-authoring a book based off of this research with Dr. Robert Pape and Alexandra Greiwe.
As a graduate student in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, Julio has focused broadly on modern Middle Eastern history and Islamic political thought with an emphasis on Syria. During the course of his studies, Julio has also developed language proficiency in Arabic, Hebrew, Turkish and French. Before joining CPOST, Julio worked as a Syria Political Analyst for the Department of Defense prior to and during the early stages of the ongoing Syrian conflict. Julio holds an M.A. in Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations from the University of Chicago (2014) and a Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service from Georgetown University (2009).
Gentry Jenkins Fellow and Research Associate
Gentry Jenkins' research project addresses the question: why do revolutions within states lead to wars between states? He will show how nationalist territorial claims become salient (and indivisible) through invocations of nationalism and efforts towards consolidation of territorial control in revolutionary states, including the subjugation of ethnic minorities that this often entails. He will theorize paths to war involving initiation by both revolutionary states and their non-revolutionary neighbors, as well as explain the paths to peace in the post-revolution environment.
Gentry is a Predoctoral Fellow and Graduate Research Associate at CPOST and is currently conducting research and analysis in support of CPOST’s major ongoing study of the targeting strategies of militant groups. His responsibilities include research, writing, and data analysis. He also authored a major research report on the targeting logic of Al Qaeda Central as part of CPOST’s multi-case study on the targeting logics of militant groups. Gentry has also worked on in-house briefings in response to sudden events such as the AQAP and terrorist violence in China. Gentry received his MA from the University of Chicago’s Committee on International Relations and holds a BA from the University of Idaho (2012). He is a PhD candidate at the University of Chicago program in political science.
Maura Cremin Graduate Research Associate
Maura Cremin is a research assistant on the Office of Naval Research project. Her research for ONR assesses threats against Western actors in ISIS propaganda. In particular, she considers how the credibility of such threats should be evaluated. Maura is pursuing her PhD in Political Science concurrently with a JD from Harvard Law School. Her research focuses on the propaganda of insurgencies, with a focus on the conflict murals of Republican and Unionist militants in Northern Ireland. Maura holds a BA in International Security Studies and an MA in International Studies from the University of Oklahoma. Her MA thesis evaluated the insurgent tactics of the Irish Republican Army and the counterinsurgent tactics of the British government in the 1919-1921 War of Independence.
Alexandra Chinchilla Graduate Research Associate
Alexandra Chinchilla is a PhD student in International Relations at the University of Chicago. At CPOST, she researches U.S. security cooperation with partners in the Middle East and South Asia. She speaks Polish and Russian, and received her undergraduate degree from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service.
Andrea Bartoletti Graduate Research Associate
Andrea Bartoletti is a research assistant for the ONR project and a second-year PhD student in Political Science at the University of Chicago. He holds an MA in International Relations and European Studies and a BA in Political Science from the University of Florence. His research for CPOST analyzes what factors determine the U.S. selection of local allies in Over-the-Horizon campaigns. His current MA project works on developing a structural theory of tripolarity and examining its implications for the post-Cold War distribution of power.
Patrick O'Connor Undergraduate Research Associate
Patrick O'Connor is a student supervisor and the data manager at CPOST. Since joining CPOST in the summer of 2014, Patrick has worked as a researcher for the Suicide Attack Database and supervised the creation of several other data sets, including an in depth study of the Battle of Ramadi and the construction of cadre profiles for insurgent groups. As a third-year in the college, he is majoring in Chemistry and Political Science. He expects to graduate in the spring of 2017.
Miranda Wei Undergraduate Research Associate
Miranda Wei is a student supervisor and research associate at CPOST. Since joining CPOST in January 2015, she has contributed to op-eds in the New York Times and the Chicago Tribune. Miranda also led teams in the production of reports on the targeting logics of the Pakistani Taliban and Al Qaeda in Iraq, and the propaganda mechanisms of ISIS. She is majoring Political Science with a minor in Computer Science and expects to graduate from the University of Chicago in the spring of 2017.
Kelsey Grant Undergraduate Research Associate
Kelsey Grant is a research associate and student supervisor at CPOST and an undergraduate at the University of Chicago. She is pursuing a major in International Studies with specialization in French and Arabic. Kelsey joined CPOST in the summer of 2015 as a member of CPOST's data team to work updating the Suicide Attack Database. She is now one of two leaders of the Video Team on CPOST's Minerva Initiative Project. She expects to graduate from the University in the spring of 2017.
Jason Smith Undergraduate Research Associate
Jason Smith is a student supervisor at CPOST and a third year undergraduate at the University of Chicago majoring in philosophy and political science. He joined CPOST in the fall of 2015 and currently supervises the data team. He previously worked on data for the Suicide Attack Database and the Office of Naval Research project. Jason expects to graduate in the spring of 2018.
Bryan Popoola Undergraduate Research Associate
Bryan Popoola is a student supervisor at CPOST and a rising fourth-year majoring in Economics and International Studies at the University of Chicago. He joined CPOST in the summer of 2016 as a member of the data team, and helps update the Suicide Attack Database. Outside of CPOST, Bryan is part of on-campus think-tank EUChicago and is currently learning Portuguese and French.
Luke Morell Undergraduate Research Associate
Luke Morell is a student supervisor at the Chicago Project on Security and Terrorism (CPOST), and a third year majoring in Political Science and History at the University of Chicago. He started working at CPOST Summer 2015 as a member of the Early Warning Project on the al-Qaeda in Iraq team, and is currently working on the al-Shabaab in Somalia, Ethiopia, and Kenya team for the Fall of 2015. Outside of school, Luke is very active in his fraternity, serving as Social Chair for the Fall term. He plans to graduate in the Spring of 2017.
Hamza Shad Undergraduate Research Associate
Hamza Shad is a student supervisor at CPOST and an undergraduate at the University of Chicago, majoring in Political Science and Economics. Fluent in Urdu and Hindi and proficient in Arabic, he focuses on current affairs in South Asia and the Middle East. Since joining CPOST in 2015, he has researched violence in Pakistan as part of the Early Warning Model project. Hamza is also the World News Editor for The Gate: Political Analysis & Opinions and expects to graduate from the University of Chicago in the spring of 2017.
Danna Elmasry Undergraduate Research Associate
Danna Elmasry is a student supervisor at CPOST and a third year undergraduate majoring in Fundamentals and minoring in Human Rights. She joined CPOST in the autumn of 2015 and helps to maintain the Suicide Attack Database, focusing specifically on Iraq. She hopes to graduate in the spring of 2017.
Andrew Mines Undergraduate Researcher Associate
Andrew Mines is a research assistant/intern at CPOST and a third-year undergraduate student at the University of Chicago. He is majoring in Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, focusing on Islamic and Modern Middle Eastern Studies and Arabic. Andrew works with the DoD MINERVA Martyr Video Project, where he does video analysis. He expects to graduate in the Spring of 2018.