Harriman Institute alumni


  • Sarah Aasbo

    HI '13
    Advisor, Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors
  • Madeleine Albright

    RI '68

    Principle, The Albright Group LLC; Mortara Distinguished Professor of Diplomacy, Georgetown University

    U.S. Secretary of State, 1997-2000

    "In the '60s, the Russian Institute provided those of us enrolled in the University's Public Law and Government Department a home base: intellectual sustenance, camaraderie, and a sense of purpose. Although, happily, most of what we learned is now archeology, the discipline and love of the subject continue."

  • Christian Amos

    MARS-REERS '19

  • Megan Ausen

    HI '11
    Senior Associate at Stroz Friedberg, An Aon Company

  • Sarah Calderone

    SIPA '18

    Political Risk Analyst, Russian and Eurasian Affairs
    Horizon Client Access
  • Erin Carll

    HI '10
    PhD Candidate, Sociology
    University of Washington
  • Oktavia Catsaros

    HI '17

    Account Director, BLJ Worldwide

  • Lindsey Cohen

    MARS-REERS '19

  • Stephen F. Cohen

    RI '69

    Professor of Russian and Slavic Studies, New York University

    "I recall above all, and value even more as the years pass, the wonderfully eclectic collection of senior scholars gathered at the Institute in the 1960s--all of them devoted in their own ways to understanding and teaching about Russia, none of them instilling any orthodoxy in their students, and few of them afflicted by the cold-war passions of the time. I know of no academic institution that could have been a better place to study, then or now." 

  • Joe Gamse

    MARS-REERS '19

  • Dana L. Geraghty

    HI '13
    Special Assistant to the Cheif Executive Officer
    Foundation for a Just Society
  • Vanina Gergorin

    HI '14 
  • Apryl Gibson

    HI '12
    Volunteer Coordinator
    Review and Translation Program Manager
  • Franklin E. Gill

    RI '59

    Former Research Professor of Law
    The University of New Mexico School of Law
    "The experience of working closely with scholars such as John Hazard, Philip Mosely and Henry Roberts was indeed a highlight of my life and provided, I believe, a solid basis for my work in various aspects of international law and relations in later years."
  • Viktoriya Gilvarg

    MARS-REERS '15

    Compliance, Societe Generale
  • Elliot R. Goodman


    RI '51
    "As a graduate of one of the Russian Institute's earlier classes, I felt part of a groundbreaking experience, and this served as the foundation for my subsequent academic career.  I was also fortunate enough that my mentor was Philip Mosely, scholar and superb human being."
  • Loren R. Graham

    RI '60

    Professor of the History of Science MIT

    "The Harriman Institute/Russian Institute at Columbia was the formative institution in my intellectual life. Coming there as a beginning graduate student in 1958, I stayed on until I received my Ph.D. in 1963, and three years later joined the history and Russian Institute faculties at Columbia, where I stayed until 1978." 

  • Cory Greenberg

    SIPA '18

  • Karina Grinstein

    HI '11
    Program Coordinator, Open Society Foundations
  • Eugenia Gusilov

    HI '10
    Managing Director, Romanian Energy Center

  • Dan N. Jacobs


    RI '53
    Professor of Political Science Emeritus
    Miami University, Oxford, Ohio
    "The Institute performed a great national service in being for decades the premier facility training specialists to cope with the area of major threat to national security.  And while the nature of that threat has been redirected, the area--by nature of its history, huge economic potential, variety and instability--retains its centrality."
  • Eric Jacobson

    HI Certificate '16

    Research Assistant, McAleese and Associates
  • Elizabeth Johnsen (Celms)

    HI '12
    Outreach and Editorial Director
    The Opportunity Agenda


  • Ross Johnston


    HI '09
    Foreign Service Officer
    US Department of State

  • Ajla Karajko Fijuljanin

    SIPA '15

    Founder, Orea Bazar
    IT Project Manager, Mistral
  • Riina Kionka


    HI '87
    Cheif Foreign Policy Advisor to the President
    Council of the European Union
    "For me, the crumbling of the Soviet Union finally forced the Institute to become what it should have been all along, not an institution devoted solely to Russian studies, but one that keeps a finger on the pulse of the plethora of other nations and movements in the area known as the Former Soviet Union."
  • William Korey


    RI '48 (Deceased)
    Professor Emeritus of History and former Director of International Policy Research
    B'nai B'rith 
    "The Institute has been invaluable in providing me with both a broad background and highly specialized skills for the several careers I pursued as teacher, researcher and writer."
  • Jamie Kosmar


    HI ‘05
    Senior Advisor, Evidencity,Inc
  • Abigail Kret

    HI '12
    PhD Candidate, History
    Princeton University
  • Shuntu Kuang

    HI '13
    PhD candidate, History Dept, University of Toronto

  • Jeri Laber

    RI '54

    Executive Director, Human Rights Watch (retired) 

  • Emily Laskin

    HI '11
    PhD Candidate, Comparative Literature
    University of California-Berkeley
  • Maria Lechtarova

    MARS-REERS '15

    PhD candidate, Anthropology
  • Andrew Lohsen

    HI '15

    Monitoring Officer, Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine
  • George S. N. Luckyj


    RI '51
    "I remember with great fondness Philip Mosely, the late director of the Institute and a teacher at Columbia, who encouraged me in my work on 'Litarary Politics in the Soviet Ukraine,' a topic which, in those days, was viewed by some as dealing with 'the lunatic fringe' (Ukraine)."

  • Jack Perry

    RI '58 (deceased)
    U.S. Ambassador to Bulgaria, 1979-81

    "Columbia, and the Institute, stand very high on my personal list of Worthwhile Things With Which I Have Been Associated...It was thanks to Columbia that I had the satisfying and rewarding Foreign Service career that I did. Columbia University illuminated the truth of a critical half-century in such a way that the higher interests of humankind could be served. This goes beyond scholarship to wisdom, and is much to be praised."

  • Anna Pershikova

    HI Certificate '18

    Assistant Buyer, Mercury Group
  • William Persing

    HI '18

    Analyst, Elixirr
  • Peter Petkovsek

    HI '16

    Theater Director, Freelance
  • Sophie Pinkham

    HI '12
    PhD 2019, Department of Slavic Languages, Columbia University
  • David Pruden

    HI '18

    Cross-Team Editor (Associate), Blackpeak
  • Kristina Prysyazhnyuk

    HI '13
    Student, Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law

  • Cynthia A. Roberts


    HI '92
    Adjunct Associate Professor
    School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University
    Associate Professor of Political Science
    Hunter College
    City University of New York
    "Columbia set the standard when I went through, partly because the richness of the Soviet area studies program was combined with a broad and rigorous foundation in political science and even more so because of the exceptional quality of the faculty."
  • Stephen S. Rosenfeld

    RI '59
    Deputy Editorial Page Editor (Deceased)

    "My two years at the Russian Institute got me a job at The Washington Post, the Moscow Bureau, a wife (an American I met in Moscow), a career, a life."

  • Karl W.Ryavec


    RI '62
    Professor Emeritus of Political Science
    University of Massachusetts, Amherst
    "While at the Institute I made strong friendships that I still maintain and established contacts that have been very important to me professionally..."

  • Jonathan E. Sanders


    RI '76
    Former Moscow Correspondent, CBS News
    "The Russian Institute was a warm, caring home inside a sprawling university all too often cold and bureacratic, despite its best intentions.  Inculcation of a spirit of critical-mindedness was the hallmark of the Russian Institute.  The informal cross-fertilization of ideas, discussions in the halls with visiting scholars and students from a wide variety of disciplines, and intense "brown bag" lunchoeons...these were the highlights of my graduate school days."
  • Gabriel Santamaria

    SIPA '18

    Senior Associate, Veracity Worldwide
  • Nate Schenkkan

    HI '03
    Director for Special Research
    Freedom House
  • Nina Schwalbe

    Director of Policy, TB Alliance

    HI '93
    Cheif Executive Officer
    Spark Street Consulting
  • Judith Sedaitis


    HI '90
    Adjunct Assistant Professor
    CUNY New York City College of Technology
    "The esprit de corps and supportive faculty of the Harriman Institute created a lively forum for exploring the incredible changes in our field during my time there."
  • Claire Shipman


    HI ‘94
    Senior National Correspondent, Good Morning America, ABC NEWS
  • Marshall Shulman

    Former Director of the Harriman Institute
    Columbia University

  • Jack Snyder

    RI ‘78

    Robert and Renee Belfer Professor of International Relations, Columbia University 
    Acting Director, Harriman Institute, Columbia University (2005-06)
  • Jesse Sodam

    MARS-REERS '15

    Foreign Area Officer, US Army
  • Gene Sosin

    RI '49 (deceased)
    Director of Broadcasting, Radio Liberty
  • Willis Sparks

    HI '04
    Director, Global Macro, United States
    Eurasia Group
  • Joel Springstead

    MARS-REERS '16

    Foreign Area Officer, US Army
  • Jack Stein

    HI '18

    Presidential Management Fellow
    US Department of State
  • Ronald Grigor Suny


    RI '65
    William H Swewell Jr Distinguished University Professor of History
    University of Michigan
    Professor Emeritus of Political Science, The University of Chicago
    "The Institute was a home as well as a school, the place where we worked with, rather than under, such wonderful mentors as Alex Dallin, Henry Roberts, Marc Raeff, and Leo Haimson."
  • Steve Swerdlow

    HI '03
    Central Asia Senior Researcher, Europe and Central Asia Division
    Human Rights Watch
  • Stephen Szypulski

    MARS-REERS '15

    Vice President, Insider Threat Program
    Goldman Sachs

  • Shahrbanou Tadjbakhsh


    HI '94
    Lecturer, Sciences Po
    United Nations Development Program Consultant on Gender in Central Asia and the Caucasus
    "I feel fortunate to have been at the Institute at what was probably the most exciting time ever in our field.  It was great to have the daily TV to keep us constantly updated on the tumultuous events taking place.  We were also very lucky to have the chance to work with the many visiting scholars in residence from our area of study and to receive Institute fellowship support to travel there ourselves."
  • William Taubman


    RI ‘65
    Bertrand Snell Professor of Political Science, Amherst College
  • Jessica Teicher

    HI '09

    Operations Advisor, USAID
    Office of Transition Initiatives
  • Haik Ter-Nersesyan

    HI '15

    Associate Director, UBS
  • Laura Trimajova

    Hi '13
    Accredited Parliamentary Assistant, Office of Vladimir Bilcik Member of European Parliament

  • Edward W. Walker


    HI '92
    Executive Director
    Berkeley Program in Soviet and Post-Soviet Studies
    University of California at Berkeley
    "The Harriman Institute was critical in enabling me to pursue a career in Soviet and post-Soviet studies.  I am very grateful for both the intellectual stimulation and the financial support provided by the Institute and its excellent faculty and staff during my years as a Ph.D. candidate in political science at Columbia."
  • Diego Benning Wang

    MARS-REERS '16

    PhD Candidate, History
    Princeton University
  • Angela Wheeler

    HI Certificate '16

    PhD Candidate, Architecture
    Harvard University

  • Donald S.Zagoria


    RI '49
    Professor of Government
    Hunter College
    City University of New York
    "The Russian Institute was one of my most important intellectual homes throughout my scholarly career."