Letter from the Chair, Autumn 2021 

John Wilkerson
John Wilkerson, Chair

I hope that you had a nice summer. By the time you read this, our students will be back on campus and no doubt thrilled to be here. We are looking forward to seeing them and seeing each other, including a whole cohort of graduate students who started in 2020 that we have yet to meet in person. 

Regrettably, an in-person faculty panel this fall does not seem like the right thing to do at this point. So we will be having two more virtual events. The first, on October 22, is sponsored by our Center for Environmental Politics, and will feature Seattle mayoral candidates Bruce Harrell and Lorena Gonzalez.  The second, on Nov 16, is our fall faculty panel – featuring the political theorists in our department. Please be sure to RSVP ahead of time.

We are excited to welcome a new faculty member this fall, Asli Cansunar. Asli received her Ph.D. from Duke University and just recently completed a post-doctoral fellowship at Oxford University. She specializes in Comparative Politics with particular interests in economic inequality, the Middle East (and Turkish Pop music!).

Two valued colleagues will also retire this year. Professor Karen Litfin specialized in International Relations and Environmental Politics and taught innovative courses such as Global Environmental Politics and Political Ecology of the Food System. Susanne Recordon worked behind the scenes as our long-time Graduate Program Assistant. She is well-loved by the many students she supported. We wish them both the best in their new adventures.