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  School of Criminal Justice 2014–2016 Faculty and Administration  

Faculty and Administration

Robert Apel, Ph.D., University of Maryland.  Dr. Apel (pronounced AY-pull) joined the faculty of Rutgers University in 2011. His research expertise concerns the relationship between employment and crime, with special emphasis on the youth labor market and the transition to adulthood. A second research specialty concerns the short- and long-term impacts of incarceration experiences on life outcomes, specifically with respect to the labor market. A third area of inquiry involves the study of assault victimization, namely the way that the victim-assailant relationship influences outcomes (e.g., completion, injury, lethality).

Edem F. Avakame, Ph.D., University of Alberta.  Dr. Avakame earned a B.A. degree in economics and sociology from the University of Cape Coast, Ghana. He earned his M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in sociology from the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada. He has served as a professor of criminal justice at Temple University, Philadelphia, and was the first Andrew W. Mellon Research Fellow on Race and Crime at the Vera Institute of Justice, New York, NY. His research interests include the nature and causes of violence in the home; the relationship between race, social class, and crime; and the longitudinal influences of social structural disadvantage on child adolescent development.

Anthony A. Braga, Ph.D., Rutgers University.  Dr. Braga is a professor in the School of Criminal Justice at Rutgers University and a senior research fellow in the program in Criminal Justice Policy and Management at Harvard University. He is also a member of the University of Chicago Crime Lab and a senior fellow in the Chief Justice Earl Warren Institute on Law and Social Policy at the University of California, Berkeley. He is currently the president and an elected fellow of the Academy of Experimental Criminology. He received his M.P.A. from Harvard University and his Ph.D. in criminal justice from Rutgers University.

Rod K. Brunson, Ph.D., University of Illinois at Chicago.  Dr. Brunson's research examines youths' experiences in neighborhood contexts, with a specific focus on the interactions of race, class, and gender, and their relationship to criminal justice practices. He has published over 25 articles. Dr. Brunson's work appears in the British Journal of Criminology, Crime & Delinquency, Criminology, Criminology & Public Policy, Gender & Society, the Journal of Quantitative Criminology, Justice Quarterly, Sociological Quarterly, and Urban Affairs Review. He is the 2008 recipient of the New Scholar Award, American Society of Criminology, Division on People of Color and Crime. He also received the 2010 Tory J. Caeti Outstanding Young Scholar. 

Joel Caplan, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania.  In 2008, Dr. Caplan joined the faculty as assistant professor. His dissertation was on victim input into parole decisions. He has been a research associate at the University of Pennsylvania's Cartographic Modeling Lab, where he has applied spatial analysis to projects relating to gun violence, emergency medical services, disaster management, mental illness, prisoner reentry, and crime control. His research focuses on social controls, particularly public safety and corrections. He studies the intersection of criminal justice policies and practices and the effects on various stakeholders such as victims, offenders, practitioners, and the public-at-large.

Ko-lin Chin, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania.  Professor Ko-lin Chin has received funding from the National Science Foundation as well as two Fulbright Scholarships for his work on organized crime and transnational criminal activity. His most recent book is Golden Triangle: From Opium and Heroin to Methamphetamine (Cornell University Press, 2008). Currently he is conducting a study on sex trafficking in Asia and the United States.

Johnna Christian, Ph.D., University at Albany.  Dr. Christian's broad research interests are corrections, race and gender, and urban studies. Her work examines incarceration's impact on families and neighborhoods. Her study of prisoners'  families will help better understand the justice system's impact on diverse racial and ethnic groups, and more specifically, communities that experience high rates of incarceration.

Ronald V. Clarke, Ph.D., University of London.  Dr. Clarke led the team that originated situational crime prevention and is now considered to be the world's leading authority on that approach. He also jointly developed the rational choice perspective on crime with Derek Cornish. Dr. Clarke is the founding editor of Crime Prevention Studies and is author or joint author of well over 200 books, monographs, and papers, including Become a Problem Solving Crime Analyst (U.S. Dept of Justice, 2005) and Outsmarting the Terrorists (Praeger, 2006).

Elizabeth Griffiths, Ph.D., University of Toronto.  Dr. Griffiths received her Ph.D. from the Department of Sociology at the University of Toronto in 2007. Her research focuses on the diffusion of violence across space and over time, neighborhood effects, the causes and correlates of victimization risk, and the nature of disputes over which violent altercations emerge. She also studies the effects of large-scale public housing transformation on changes in crime across urban areas and the role of race and space in prosecutorial charging decisions. Dr. Griffiths' research has appeared in Criminology, The Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency, and Social Problems, among others.

Leslie W. Kennedy, Ph.D., University of Toronto.  Dr. Kennedy has published extensively in the areas of fear of crime, victimology, and violence. His current research in public security builds upon his previous work in event analysis and understanding the social contexts in which dangers in society are identified and deterred. He is the coauthor, with Van Brunschot, of Risk Balance and Security (Sage, 2008), a book that examines how risk is assessed by agencies faced with major hazards including crime, terrorism, environmental disaster, and disease. He is the coauthor with Vince Sacco of The Criminal Event (Wadsworth Publishing, 2001), appearing in its fourth edition.

Jody Miller, Ph.D., University Southern California.  Dr. Miller's research examines how inequalities of gender, race, and class shape young women's participation in crime and risks for victimization. Her books include Getting Played: African American Girls, Urban Inequality, and Gendered Violence (NYU Press, 2008) and One of the Guys: Girls, Gangs, and Gender (Oxford University Press, 2001). Dr. Miller has published dozens of articles and book chapters, including in Criminology, Gender & Society, Theoretical Criminology, and Justice Quarterly. In 2009, she received the Coramae Richey Mann Award from the American Society of Criminology's Division on People of Color and Crime. Getting Played, which was a 2008 finalist for the Society for the Study of Social Problems' C. Wright Mills Award, received the Distinguished Contribution to Scholarship Book Award from the American Sociological Association's Race, Gender, and Class Section in 2010. In addition, Dr. Miller is coordinator of the Rutgers Sri Lankan Educational Fund, a community engagement project that provides infrastructural support and educational programming on the Macaldeniya Tea Estate in the central hills of Sri Lanka.

Joel Miller, Ph.D., University of Surrey.
  Dr. Miller has spent much of his career carrying out research in applied criminal justice settings, including six years working in the British Home Office and five years at the Vera Institute of Justice. He has led studies on a range of criminal justice topics, including police accountability, racial profiling, police corruption, juvenile delinquency, recidivism, alternatives to incarceration, and crime reduction and prevention.

Andres F. Rengifo, Ph.D., CUNY Graduate Center-John Jay College.  Dr. Rengifo's research focuses primarily on the macrolevel intersection between sentencing policies and imprisonment. He also studies social networks and urban crime and disorder. Dr. Rengifo's current areas of interest include the study of corrections policy and innovation at the state and local levels, the evolution of co-offending networks over time and space, and comparative work on issues of public safety and crime control in Latin America (Colombia, Venezuela, Dominican Republic, Chile, and Jamaica). He is also a research fellow at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University (Program in Criminal Justice Policy and Management).

Norman Samuels, Ph.D., Duke University.  Dr. Samuels recently returned to the faculty after serving for three decades in senior university administrative roles. His research interests are in the fields of terrorism and counterterrorism, security and intelligence studies, the intersection of international terrorism and crime, and in particular, the interface among these topics and the American system of government. He teaches courses and advises graduate students in these areas. He is a university professor and provost emeritus.

Mercer L. Sullivan, Ph.D., Columbia University.  Dr. Sullivan's book Getting Paid: Youth Crime and Work in the Inner City (Cornell University Press, 1989) is widely cited as a seminal study of ecological influences on youth development. He is one of the first researchers to have studied the male role in teenage pregnancy and parenting. His other research has examined the roles of community development corporations in promoting public safety, multiple-victim school shootings, patterns of ordinary school violence, the relation of public perceptions of youth gang activity to actual patterns of youth violence, and the social processes of reentry from juvenile incarceration. He teaches courses on qualitative research methods, violent crime, juvenile justice, developmental and life course criminology, and general criminology.

Bonita Veysey, Ph.D., University at Albany.  Dr. Veysey's research has focused on behavioral health and justice issues, including mental health and substance abuse treatment in jails and prisons; diversion and treatment services for youth and adults with behavioral health problems; and conditions of confinement and the effects of trauma. She has extensive experience in program evaluation and frequently consults with local communities. She is now working with Dr. Christian and Dr. Martinez on an edited volume entitled Identity Transformation and Offender Change that is expected to be published in early 2009.

Sarah Wakefield, Ph.D., University of Minnesota.  Sara Wakefield received her Ph.D. from the Department of Sociology at the University of Minnesota in 2007. Her research interests focus on the consequences of mass imprisonment for the family, with an emphasis on childhood well-being and racial inequality, culminating in a series of articles and book, Children of the Prison Boom: Mass Incarceration and the Future of American Inequality. In other work, Dr. Wakefield is an investigator on a multi-disciplinary, NICHD-funded (PO1) study of human capital interventions during childhood and adolescence. Her research is focused on the congruence between substance use prevention policies and the developmental needs of children and youth.

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