Executive Committee

Ex-Officio – Executive Director: Michael Loadenthal, Ph.D.

Michael Loadenthal is the Executive Director of the Peace and Justice Studies Association. He completed his PhD in 2015 at George Mason University, and previously completed an MLitt at the Centre for the Study of Terrorism and Political Violence at the University of St Andrews in 2010. Dr. Loadenthal has taught courses on political violence, terrorism and sociology at Georgetown University, George Mason University, the University of Cincinnati, the University of Malta, Miami University, and Jessup Correctional Institution. Michael has served as the Dean’s Fellow for the George Mason’s School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, a Practitioner-In-Residence for Georgetown’s Center for Social Justice, and a Research Fellow at Hebrew Union College’s Center for the Study of Ethics and Contemporary Moral Problems. His work has been published in a variety of venues including Critical Studies on Terrorism, Journal for the Study of Radicalism, Perspectives on Terrorism, Journal of Applied Security Research, Journal of Feminist Scholarship, Journal of Radical Criminology, Anarchist Developments in Cultural Studies and other social movement and political theory journals and books.

Contact: Michael@peacejusticestudies.org

Co-Chair: Laura Finley, Ph.D. (18-20)

Laura Finley is Associate Professor of Sociology and Criminology at Barry University in Miami, Florida. She is also author, co-author or editor of seventeen books and numerous book chapters and journal articles. In addition, Dr. Finley is actively involved in a number of peace, justice and human rights groups. She serves as Board Chair for No More Tears, a non-profit organization that serves victims of domestic violence and human trafficking, and is a board member of The Humanity Project and Floridians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty. Prior to being elected co-chair, Dr. Finley was Publications Chair for PJSA. She also coordinates PJSA’s Speaker’s Bureau.

Contact: lfinley@barry.edu

Co-Chair: Jennie Barron, Ph.D. (19-21)

Jennie Barron is the Chair of the Mir Centre for Peace at Selkirk College in Castlegar, BC, where she has been an instructor since 2007, teaching peace studies, environmental conflict, justice and peacebuilding, and restorative justice. Recently, she completed a PhD through Carleton University, focusing on urban space, food sovereignty, and the revival of the commons. Previously, her academic attention was on social movements and the politics of environmental-Indigenous solidarity work. She has a background in community development and activism around a range of issues, from anti-Iraq war activism to pesticide bans to school gardens to resistance to large-scale mining and low-level military flight testing in Nitassinan (Labrador). She has served on the board of the Nelson Food Cupboard and currently volunteers with Nelson Restorative Justice. She has been a member of PJSA since 2015 and served on the organizing committee for the PJSA conference in Nelson, BC in 2016. She really feels that she has found her home in PJSA and PACS-Can and is eager to contribute by getting more deeply involved in these organizations as a PJSA director and a Canadian representative on the board.

Contact: JBarron@selkirk.ca

Secretary: Robin Cooper, Ph.D. (19-21)

Robin Cooper brings to her work in Nova Southeastern University respect and appreciation for personal and professional cultural differences; a focus on solution-oriented collaboration; and a commitment to community-building across campus and with the larger community. Her numerous publications and conference presentations reflect her strong research interests in identity-based conflict, cross-cultural conflict resolution, collaborative practices in organizational contexts, qualitative research, and student learning. She has conducted research among Cuban, Haitian, and Guatemalan communities in South Florida and research exploring the impact of changing demographics in Broward County, research on the experience of Medical Foster Parents in South Florida and on interprofessional collaboration in the health professions, as well as research on engaging community stakeholders in water management decision-making at the community level. She is Co-Editor of the Peace Education Book Series for Information Age Press, Senior Editor of The Qualitative Report, Associate Editor of Forum: Qualitative Social Research, and an Associate of the Taos Institute, a community of scholars whose practice reflects the principles of social constructionism. Dr. Cooper has been teaching in higher education since 2008, teaching courses in conflict resolution, culture and conflict, social and behavioral sciences, interprofessional leadership, and qualitative research. In addition to teaching, she has participated in program and curriculum development, assessment, and revision, as well as pedagogical research on student learning. She is committed to student-centered education and a culture of research at Nova Southeastern University.

Contact: robicoop@nova.edu

Treasurer: Wim Laven, Ph.D. (19-21)

Wim Laven teaches Conflict Resolution and Peace Studies at Cuyahoga Community College in Ohio. He recently completed his PhD in International Conflict Management at Kennesaw State University with the dissertation, “Where do we go from here?” The influence of personality and social motivators on attitudes toward structural violence and interpersonal forgiveness. He has also taught conflict resolution, peace studies, and political science and international affairs at a range of institutions including Kennesaw State University, Lee Arrendale State Prison (a maximum-security facility in Georgia), Life University, and Portland State University. Over the last two decades he has been involved in projects related to conflict, humanitarian assistance, peacebuilding, and reconciliation on four continents. He has attended the annual PJSA conference for the last eight years as well as the last two IPRA conferences, where he is in his second term as a North American representative on the governing council. He recently joined the editorial team for the revamped magazine The Peace Chronicle (formerly PJSA’s newsletter) and he frequently contributes op-eds for syndication by PeaceVoice.

Contact: wimlaven@gmail.com