I am currently an Assistant Professor of National Security Affairs in the College of Distance Education at the United States Naval War College. Before joining the College of Distance Education I was a Postdoctoral Fellow in the National Security Affairs (NSA) Department at the Naval War College from July 2021-August 2022.
Previously, I served as a Postdoctoral Researcher with the University of Central Florida (May-July 2021) working on several projects related to the human right to water and sanitation and was a Visiting Assistant Professor in International Studies at Centre College (August 2019-July 2021) where I instructed courses in Comparative Politics, International Relations, Research Design, National and International Security, African Politics, Child Soldiering, and Global Health.
I earned my Ph.D. in Security Studies from the School of Politics, Security, and International Affairs (August 2019) at the University of Central Florida. During the 2018-2019 academic year I was selected as a Minerva-Jennings Randolph Peace and Security Scholar at the United States Institute of Peace (USIP).
I have several overlapping research interests broadly focused on conflict dynamics and processes. My primary research centers on human security in armed conflict with specific attention on rebel recruitment strategies, militant financing and tactics, and foreign policy in combatting non-state armed groups. In my research I often utilize a mixed-methods approach including statistical modeling, case-studies, and semi-structured interviews.
In addition to my research on human security and militant behavior in conflict, my ongoing projects focus on private military and security companies (PMSCs), civil-military relations and prospects for democratization or democratic backsliding, maritime terrorism, and counterterrorism effectiveness. To date, my research has been published or is forthcoming in outlets such as African Security, Africa Spectrum, the British Journal of Politics & International Relations, Civil Wars, Conflict Management and Peace Science, the Commonwealth Journal of International Affairs, Democratization, the European Journal of International Relations, International Studies Quarterly, Small Wars & Insurgencies, Third World Quarterly, and Water. I also aim to contribute to several academic/policy outlets such as The Conversation, Duck of Minerva, the Modern War Institute, the Combatting Terrorism Center, Political Violence at a Glance, and War on the Rocks.
I hold a B.A. (2008) in Political Science, MPA with a concentration on public management (2010), M.A. and Graduate Certificate in International Conflict Management and Resolution with a focus on International Security (2013) from the University of North Carolina Wilmington, and a Graduate Certificate in Intelligence and National Security (2018) from the University of Central Florida.