We are pleased to announce the 2020-2021 Jackson Institute Senior Fellows.

Jackson Senior Fellows are leading practitioners in various fields of international affairs who spend a year or semester at Yale teaching courses and mentoring students. This year’s group includes six newcomers and 19 returning Fellows.

Read more about all of our Senior Fellows

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Ross Douthat

Ross Douthat is a Senior Fellow at the Jackson School. He joined The New York Times as an Op-Ed columnist in April 2009. His column appears every Tuesday and Sunday, and he co-hosts the Times Op-Ed podcast, "The Argument." Previously, he was a senior editor at The Atlantic and a blogger on its website. 

He is the author of "The Decadent Society," forthcoming in March 2020. His other books include "To Change the Church: Pope Francis and the Future of Catholicism," published in 2018, “Bad Religion: How We Became a Nation of Heretics” (2012), “Privilege: Harvard and the Education of the Ruling Class” (2005), and a co-author, with Reihan Salam, of “Grand New Party: How Republicans Can Win the Working Class and Save the American Dream” (2008). He is the film critic for National Review.

He lives with his wife and three children in New Haven.

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John Negroponte
Ambassador Negroponte held government positions abroad and in Washington between 1960 and 1997 and again from 2001 to 2008.

He has been Ambassador to Honduras, Mexico, the Philippines, the United Nations, and Iraq. In Washington he served twice on the National Security Council staff, first as Director for Vietnam in the Nixon Administration and then as Deputy National Security Advisor under President Reagan. He has also held a cabinet level position as the first Director of National Intelligence under President George W. Bush. His most recent position in government was as Deputy Secretary of State, where he served as the State Department’s Chief Operating Officer.

While in the private sector from 1997 to 2001, Ambassador Negroponte was Executive Vice President of the McGraw-Hill Companies, with responsibility for overseeing the company’s international activities. During those years he was also Chairman of the French-American Foundation. From 2009 to 2016, Mr. Negroponte taught international relations at Yale’s Jackson Institute and from 2016 to 2018 at The Elliott School for International Affairs at George Washington University. During the 2018-2019 academic year, he was the James R. Schlesinger Distinguished Professor at the University of Virginia’s Miller Center.

Ambassador Negroponte serves as Chairman Emeritus of the Council of the Americas/Americas Society. He is also Co-chairman of the US-Philippines Society and a past member of the Secretary of State’s Foreign Affairs Policy Board. He has also served as Chairman of the Intelligence and National Security Alliance.

Ambassador Negroponte has received numerous awards in recognition of his more than four decades of public service, including the State Department’s Distinguished Service Medal on two separate occasions, the highest award which can be conferred by the Secretary of State, and on January 16, 2009, President Bush awarded Ambassador Negroponte the National Security Medal for his outstanding contributions to US national security.
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Paul Simons

Paul Simons has been actively engaged in global energy and climate change policymaking for more than two decades. Since 2020, he has served as a Senior Fellow at Yale’s Jackson School of Global Affairs, teaching and mentoring students in the clean energy transition. He is also the founding director of the Yale Emerging Climate Leaders Fellowship, a new program to develop a network of leading clean energy and climate change practitioners from the Global South. 

From 2015 to 2020, Simons served as deputy executive director and chief operating officer of the International Energy Agency (IEA), the leading global authority for energy and climate change analysis and policy development. At the IEA, he led outreach activities with major emerging economies, drawing China, India, Indonesia, Brazil, South Africa, and Mexico into the IEA family. He also coordinated IEA participation in the G20 process, the leading global forum for multilateral cooperation, and edited all major IEA publications including the benchmark World Energy Outlook. Simons launched in-depth energy policy reviews of key IEA countries and led IEA participation in the annual U.N. COP climate change process. He continues to work with the IEA as a senior adviser on key energy and climate policy reviews.

Previously, during a three-decade diplomatic career, Simons served as U.S. Ambassador to Chile, managing one of the deepest U.S. bilateral relationships in the hemisphere, and as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Energy and Sanctions, where he coordinated U.S. energy diplomacy initiatives worldwide. Earlier in his State Department career, he ran the Narcotics and Law Enforcement Bureau and participated for more than a decade in Middle East peace negotiations.  Prior to his diplomatic service, Simons worked in international corporate banking. He holds a B.A. from Yale and an M.B.A. in finance from New York University.

Rory Stewart photo
Rory Stewart

Rory Stewart was most recently the President of GiveDirectly. He was previously the UK Secretary of State for International Development, a member of the National Security Council, Minister of State for Africa, Middle East, and Asia, Minister of State for Prisons and Probations, Minister for the Environment and Chair of the House of Commons Defence Select Committee. He founded and ran the Turquoise Mountain foundation in Afghanistan and was the Director of the Carr Centre and the Ryan Family Professor of Human Rights at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.

He is the co-presenter of the UK’s leading podcast, "The Rest is Politics,” has written five books, including three international bestsellers, presented three BBC television documentaries, and written numerous articles in journals including the New York Review of Books, the London Review of Books and the Times Literary Supplement. He was awarded the Order of the British Empire for his work in Iraq, and has been awarded a number of international medals, and prizes, and holds two honorary doctorates.

Rory will teach in and co-direct the Brady-Johnson Program in Grand Strategy.

Shoshana Stewart photo
Shoshana Stewart
Shoshana Stewart is the CEO of Turquoise Mountain, an international NGO working in Afghanistan, Myanmar, Saudi Arabia and Jordan to revive historic neighbourhoods and traditional crafts in order to create jobs, skills and a renewed sense of pride in areas where culture is under threat.
Shoshana has spent the last 14 years living and working in those countries, and leading the charity to restore and rebuild over 150 historic buildings, train over 6000 traditional artisans and builders, create a primary school and health clinic and bring over $7,000,000 worth of income back to those communities by bringing their products to international markets. During her tenure as CEO, Shoshana expanded the initial project in the Old city of Kabul across Afghanistan, and to three other countries, and she led the growth of Turquoise Mountain’s commercial and trading operations from $500,000 to $7 million.
Shoshana has an MBA from the London Business School, a Master's Degree in Education, and a Bachelor's Degree in Astrophysics from Williams College. Prior to Turquoise Mountain, Shoshana worked as a teacher and administrator in low-income urban communities with Teach For America and Uncommon Schools in New York City, Boston and Honduras.
Bisa Williams photo
Bisa Williams

Ambassador Bisa Williams (ret) is co-Founder and Managing Director of Williams Strategy Advisors, LLC (WSA),  a problem-solving, business and foreign affairs advisory consulting firm. For the last 2 years, she has also led The Carter Center’s effort as Independent Observer of implementation of the Peace Agreement in Mali.  Before forming WSA, Ambassador Williams was a career member of the Foreign Service of the U.S. Department of State. During her 30+ years in the Foreign Service, she served tours in Guinea (Conakry), Panama, Mauritius, France, the US Mission to the UN (NY), Washington, DC, including two years at the National Security Council of The White House, and Niger. As Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs, Ambassador Williams led the US delegation to talks in Havana, Cuba, breaking a seven year hiatus of high level direct discussions. Her accomplishments were recognized in LeoGrande/Kornbluh book Back Channel to Cuba. She was appointed by President Barack Obama in 2010 as Ambassador to Niger where she served for 3 years. Following her tour as Ambassador, she was named Deputy Assistant Secretary of State in the Bureau of African Affairs, supporting US economic policy goals in sub-Saharan Africa and bilateral policy in the West Africa region. Ambassador Williams retired from the Foreign Service in 2015.  She speaks French, Spanish, and Portuguese and is the recipient of numerous Superior and Meritorious Honor Awards from the Department of State. She holds a Master of Science degree in National Security Strategy from the National War College of the National Defense University in Washington, DC and a Master of Arts degree in Comparative Literature from the University of California, Los Angeles.  She received her Bachelor of Arts degree cum laude from Yale.