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Joe Derdzinski


Joseph Derdzinski is currently a senior international development and governance adviser, a visiting professor of political science, and an active member of organizations that promote the care of persons with developmental disabilities. Joseph earned his Doctor of Philosophy from the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver, a Master of Arts in Russian and East European Studies from the University of Texas at Austin, a Master of Science in International Relations from Troy University and an undergraduate degree from the University of Wisconsin at Madison. Much of his current research and consulting interests center on the study of the democratic consolidation processes of post-authoritarian states. He has served on election observation missions in Egypt and Afghanistan, and conducted and published research to help the newly-formed Ukrainian government develop an accountable national guard.

Joseph was a US Air Force officer, retiring after 22 years as an associate professor of political science and a senior faculty member at the United States Air Force Academy, teaching and publishing extensively on democratization, human rights, and governance. The first half of his career was as a special agent in the Air Force’s Office of Special Investigations, with overseas assignments in Germany and the United Kingdom.  There he worked extensively with the security and law enforcement services of those countries and multiple other allies. He also led an office for the first US military contingent in Bosnia during NATO’s implementation of the Dayton Peace Agreement, working with Bosnia’s security services in their post-conflict transition.