Steven Dudley, co-director and co-founder, head of research for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean: Dudley is a senior fellow at American University's Center for Latin American and Latino Studies in Washington DC. He is the former Bureau Chief of The Miami Herald in the Andean Region and the author of "Walking Ghosts: Murder and Guerrilla Politics in Colombia" (Routledge 2004). Dudley has also reported from Haiti, Brazil, Nicaragua, Cuba and Miami for National Public Radio and The Washington Post, among others. Dudley has a BA in Latin American History from Cornell University and an MA in Latin American Studies from the University of Texas at Austin. He was awarded the Knight Fellowship at Stanford University in 2007, and is a member of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. In 2012 to 2013, he was a visiting fellow at the Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars. Contact.
Jeremy McDermott, co-director and co-founder, head of research for Panama and South America: McDermott has almost two decades of experience reporting from around Latin America. He is a former British Army officer, who saw active service in Northern Ireland and Bosnia. Upon retiring from the military he became a war correspondent, covering the Balkans, based in Bosnia, then the Middle East from Beirut, before settling in Colombia from where he travels extensively through Latin America. He previously worked as the BBC’s Colombia Correspondent, as well as Latin America Correspondent for the Daily Telegraph and Jane’s Intelligence Review, specializing in drug trafficking, organized crime and the Colombian civil conflict. He has an MA from the University of Edinburgh, a post graduate diploma in Journalism and has yet to finish his doctoral thesis for a DPhil at the University of Oxford. Contact.
Maria Elena Ortegon, Chief Operating Officer: Ortegon has a degree in Business Administration (2006) and Public Accounting (2008), as well as a specialization in Business Law from the Universidad Externado de Colombia (2009). She worked as a manager in the hotel and real estate sector for seven years. She has worked for InSight Crime since March 2014. Contact.
Elyssa Pachico, Assistant Director: Pachico is a graduate of Wesleyan University (2008), where she received a degree in humanities, and American University (2013), where she received an MA in journalism. She has worked for InSight Crime in varying capacities since March 2010. Contact.
Marguerite Cawley, Chief Development Officer: Cawley is a graduate of Oberlin College in Ohio (2010), where she received a degree in politics with a concentration in international studies. She has worked for InSight Crime since January 2013. Contact.
Daniela Castro Romero, Chief Editor, Spanish: Daniela Castro is a graduate of the Universidad de los Andes in Bogota (2012), where she studied political science. She has worked for InSight Crime since 2012. Contact.
Felipe Puerta, Researcher/Writer/Editor/Graphics Designer, Spanish: Puerta is a graduate of Universidad EAFIT in Medellín (2014) where he studied Economics. He has worked for Insight Crime since June 2013. Contact.
Kyra Gurney, Assistant Editor: Gurney is a 2012 graduate of Colorado College where she studied Comparative Literature and Latin American Studies. She has been based in Colombia since 2012 and has worked with InSight Crime since June 2014. Contact.
Hector Silva, Contributing Writer: Silva is a fellow at the Center for Latin American and Latino Studies (CLALS) at American University in Washington D.C., and author of the book "The Infiltrators," published by Central American University Jose Simeon Cañas in 2014. Before working at CLALS, he was the head of investigations at newspaper La Prensa Grafica in El Salvador and a diplomat in Washington D.C.
Patrick Corcoran, Contributing Writer: Corcoran is a graduate of the University of Tennessee and received an MA from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies. He has worked for InSight Crime since 2011. Contact.
James Bargent, Contributing Writer: Bargent is a journalist who has worked for InSight Crime since 2012. More samples of his work can be seen at http://jamesbargent.com/.
Hannah Stone, Contributing Editor/Writer: Stone graduated from the University of Oxford in 2006 and received an MSc in Political Theory from the London School of Economics in 2008. She has worked for InSight Crime in varying capacities since 2011.
Geoff Ramsey, Contributing Writer: Ramsey has a degree in International Studies (2010) and an MA in International Affairs (2011) from American University. He is currently a freelance writer and a researcher for Open Society Foundation’s Latin America Program, and has worked and reported for InSight Crime in varying capacities since September 2010.
Ioan Grillo, Contributing Writer: Grillo is a senior correspondent at GlobalPost and author of El Narco: Inside Mexico’s Criminal Insurgency. You can read more of his work at Global Post and http://www.ioangrillo.com/.
Miriam Wells, Contributing Writer: Wells is a journalist who has previously worked for BBC Radio News and for Human Rights Watch. She has worked for InSight Crime since 2012. More samples of her work can be seen at http://www.miriamwells.com/.
Javier Melendez, Senior Fellow: A Nicaraguan national, Melendez founded the Instituto de Estudios Estrategicos y Politicas Publicas (IEEPP) in Nicaragua. He is currently based in San Salvador, El Salvador where he focuses on security issues in Central America and coordinates an InSight Crime-led joint project studying elites and organized crime, which is financed by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC). He joined InSight Crime in 2012. Contact.
Simeon Rizo, Financial Advisor: A Nicaraguan national, Rizo was a deputy director of IEEPP and served as a senior advisor for several Nicaraguan ministers. He has an MBA from the Catholic University in Chile and is assisting on the InSight Crime - IDRC study on elites and organized crime. He has worked with InSight Crime since 2012. Contact.
Board of Directors
Eric Hershberg, Director CLALS: Hershberg is Director of the Center for Latin American and Latino Studies and Professor of Government at American University. From 2007-2009 he was Professor of Political Science and Director of Latin American Studies at Simon Fraser University, in Vancouver, Canada. He received his PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and has taught at New York University, Southern Illinois University, Columbia, Princeton and the New School. Prior to arriving at SFU he served for fifteen years as a Program Director at the Social Science Research Council in New York City.
His research focuses on the comparative politics of Latin America, and on the politics of development. Current research projects analyze the state of democracy in South America, social sector reforms in the Andean region and conflicts over accountability for human rights abuses under military regimes in the Southern Cone countries. He has served as a consultant to numerous development and educational agencies, including the Ford Foundation, the World Bank and the Swedish International Development Agency.
PhD, Political Science University of Wisconsin-Madison
MA, Political Science University of Wisconsin-Madison
BA Spanish and French, Indiana University
Alejandro Hope, Director of Security, IMCO: Hope is the Director of Security at the Instituto Mexicano para La Competitividad (IMCO). Prior to his current position, Hope served various management positions at the Center for Investigation and National Security (CISEN) between 2008 and 2011. Between 2001 and 2008, he worked as a consulting partner at Group of Economists and Associates (GEA), a consulting firm specializing in economic and political analysis. He has a degree in Political Science from the University of Pennsylvania and is a Ph.D. candidate in the same subject.
Arlene Tickner, Universidad de los Andes: Arlene Tickner is a professor of International Relations at the Political Science Department of the Universidad de los Andes in Bogota, Colombia, where she has worked since 1991. Her research focuses on Colombian foreign relations, US-Colombia relations, hemispheric and Andean security, and the sociology of knowledge in the field of International Relations. She a columnist at Colombian newspaper El Espectador and a regular panelist on Caracol Radio's political analysis show, "Hora 20."
PhD, International Relations, University of Miami, 2000
MA, Latin American Studies, Georgetown University, 1990
BA, Middlebury College, Mathematics and Spanish, 1986
American University | The Center for Latin American and Latino Studies
The Center for Latin American and Latino Studies (CLALS) at American University in Washington, DC, engages scholars and practitioners to promote cutting-edge research to enrich understanding of Latin America and of Latino communities in the U.S.
Research: Creating and disseminating knowledge is at the core of the Center’s scholarly and institutional agenda. CLALS supports collaborative research projects organized around five thematic clusters: development & inequality; democracy & justice; cultures creativity; environment society; and hemispheric relations.
Training: CLALS is committed to advancing American University's primary goal of ensuring the highest quality training for our students, offering extensive coursework in Latin American and Latino Studies and specific degree and certificate programs around these topics.
Partnerships: In designing and implementing projects, CLALS establishes dynamic partnerships with academic institutions, think tanks, non-governmental and community organizations, and governmental and international agencies throughout the United States and Latin America. Center projects are supported through funding from extramural donors and agencies as well as by University resources.
Learn more about CLALS here.
Open Society Foundations
The Open Society Foundations work to reinforce human rights and democratic governance in Latin America and the Caribbean. Activities focus on addressing violence and state responses to organized crime, promoting transparency, and ensuring international support for open society goals.
Learn more about OSF here.
International Development Research Centre
Located in Montevideo, Uruguay, IDRC’s regional office for Latin America and the Caribbean coordinates our activities in 33 countries.
Our programming reflects the diverse needs of Mesoamerica, the Caribbean, and South America. Three core goals underlie our work in the region:
- upholding democracy, human rights, and accountable government
- reducing vulnerability to disease, natural disasters, and degrading natural resources
- increasing opportunities for equitable economic growth and access to social safety nets and services
A number of countries in the Americas are emerging from prolonged internal conflict or civil war. IDRC’s support in the region recognizes that research is needed to expand the range of practical solutions to enduring problems, to encourage innovation, and to promote long-term growth in the region.
Learn more about IDRC here.