Department Leadership

Jump to listing for: Staff, Full-Time Faculty


Jack Baldwin-LeClair

203 Dickson Hall
(973) 655-7953

Jack Baldwin-LeClair, chair, received an EdS from Rutgers University and a JD Quinnipiac School of Law. He specializes in Jurisprudence; Governance, Compliance, and Regulatory Theory in the Employment and Intellectual Property Arenas: Civil Rights, Human Rights Under International Law, Employment Law, Cyberlaw, Arbitration, and Conflict Management in the Workplace. He teaches courses including Legal Reasoning and Human Rights Law.


Brian A. Smith

250 Dickson Hall
(973) 655-7708

Brian A. Smith, deputy chair and associate professor, received a PhD in Government from Georgetown University. His research interests include the History of Political Thought and International Affairs. He teaches a range of courses in political theory and international affairs.



Tia Hanks

204 Dickson Hall
(973) 655-4238

Tia Hanks is the program assistant for the department of Political Science and Law. She receved a BS in Accounting from Rutgers Newark Business School.

Full-Time Faculty


Ariel Alvarez

202 Dickson Hall
(973) 655-4238

Ariel Alvarez, assistant professor, received a PhD in Public Policy and Administration from Rutgers University and received a JD from St. Thomas University School of Law. He is licensed to practice law. Alvarez's research interest include: constitutional law, litigation strategy and public sector reform, public organizational accountability in the context of child welfare, criminal law and criminal procedure. Alvarez teaches graduate and under graduate courses including, but not limited too: American Government, Criminal Law, Research Methods and Introduction to Public Administration.


Ian J. Drake

208 Dickson Hall
(973) 655-7223

Ian Drake, associate professor, received a PhD in American history from the University of Maryland at College Park. His research interests include: the history of American constitutional law and private law, particularly tort and contract law. He is currently conducting research on animal protection laws, First Amendment rights, and the politics of the treatment of animals used in industrial agriculture and scientific research. He teaches courses in: the American judiciary and legal system, the U.S. Supreme Court and constitutional history, the history and contemporary study of law and society, broadly construed, and political theory. Drake has also practiced law in the areas of insurance and tort law.


Daniel Herman

315 Dickson Hall
(973) 655-3056

Daniel Herman, graduate program coordinator, received a PhD in Global Affairs from Rutgers University. He teaches a variety of courses including international relations, international political economy, U.S. foreign policy, American politics and African politics. He is the author of "The Basel Capital Adequacy Accords and The Governance Of Global Finance" (Rutgers University).


Brigid Callahan Harrison

205 Dickson Hall
(973) 655-7923

Brigid Callahan Harrison, professor, received a PhD from Temple University. Her research interests include: politics and technology, campaigns and elections, American public opinion, and the politics of the Millennial Generation. She teaches courses including  American Government and Campaign Politics. Harrison is also author of American Democracy Now (McGraw-Hill Publishers, 5th ed. 2017), A More Perfect Union (McGraw-Hill Publishers, 2010), Power and Society (Cengage, 14th ed. 2016) and Women in American Politics (Wadsworth, 2003). She is frequently quoted by the press and serves as president of the New Jersey Political Science Association. In 2015 and 2016, she was named to PolitickerNJ's Power List.


Zsolt Nyiri

211 Dickson Hall
(973) 655-4238

Zsolt Nyiri, assistant professor, received a PhD from the University of Connecticut. His research interests include European Politics, Public Opinion, Transatlantic Relations, Public Diplomacy, Muslims in the West, and Research Methodology. He teaches courses including Introduction to Politics and Comparative Politics. Previously, he served as director of the Gallup World Poll in Europe and director of Transatlantic Trends at the German Marshall Fund of the United States. He is published widely in both academic and policy outlets.


Antoinette Pole

206 Dickson Hall
(973) 655-4238

Antoinette Pole, associate professor, received a PhD from the CUNY, Graduate Center. Her research interests focus on the intersection of information technology and politics, and food and politics. She explores theoretical questions related to political participation and community. Pole teaches courses including American Congress, Politics and Film, and Food and Politics. Her books include Blogging the Political: Politics and Participation in a Networked Society published by Routledge (2010), and New York Politics: A Tale of Two States coauthored, and published by M.E. Sharpe (2nd ed. 2009).


Avram B. Segall

263 Dickson Hall
(973) 655-4116

Avram B. Segall, associate professor, received a JD from New York Law School. He teaches courses including Ethical and Professional Issues in the Legal Environment, Private Civil Responsibility, U.S. Legal Systems, Law and Society: Civil Law, and the Senior Research and Writing Seminar in Jurisprudence. He is the co-author of Civil Litigation Fundamentals published by New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education (2002 and 2nd ed., 2006) and has published and presented on the subjects of real estate, teaching, and ethics. He also practices law in Clifton, N.J. concentrating in the areas of real estate, family law, and litigation. He is also the Pre-Law Internship Coordinator and the Alumni Affairs Liaison for Montclair State Attorney Alumni Network.


Tony Spanakos

209 Dickson Hall
(973) 655-7575

Tony Spanakos, associate professor, received his PhD from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. His research interests are political economy and democracy in Latin America, foreign policy of rising powers, Sino-Latin American relations, and political theory and popular culture. He is the co-editor of Reforming Brazil (2004, Lexington) and Conceptualising Comparative Politics (2015, Routledge) and the book series Conceptualising Comparative Politics (Routledge). He is co-editor for an upcoming special issue of Latin American Perspectives on "The Legacy of Hugo Chavez." His research has been published in a number of scholarly journals and books. He was a Fulbright Visiting Fellow in Brazil (2002) and Venezuela (2008) and a visiting research fellow at the National University of Singapore's East Asia Institute (2009). He teaches courses in comparative politics, international relations, political theory, Latin American politics, and political economy.


Marilyn Tayler

258 Dickson Hall
(973) 655-4196

Marilyn R. Tayler, professor, received a PhD from Rutgers University and a JD from Seton Hall University School of Law. Her research interests include interdisciplinary studies and her recent articles have appeared in Issues in Interdisciplinary Studies and Integrative Pathways. She teaches courses including: Legal Research, Graduate Research Methods, Perspectives on Law, Comparative Legal Perspectives of Israel and the United States, and Law and Literature. She is the designated Montclair State University Pre-Law Advisor and serves as the coordinator of the Jurisprudence, Law and Society major as well as the Pre-Law minor.


Elizabeth Wishnick

204 Dickson Hall
(973) 655-4238

Elizabeth Wishnick, professor, received a PhD in Political Science from Columbia University, New York. Her research interests include U.S.-China-Russia relations and non-traditional security issues. She teaches courses in International Relations, Globalization and Security, Intelligence, Global Environmental Politics, and Asian Studies. She is the author of Mending Fences: The Evolution of Moscow's China Policy from Brezhnev to Yeltsin (University of Washington Press, 2001 and 2015).  Her latest book, China’s Risk: Oil, Water, Food and Regional Security (forthcoming, Columbia University Press) addresses the security and foreign policy consequences for the Asia-Pacific region of oil, water and food risks in China. She is also the coordinator for the Asian Studies program.