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Johns Hopkins SAIS names national security expert Mara Karlin Director of the Strategic Studies Program

The Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) has appointed Professor Mara Karlin the permanent Director of the Strategic Studies program. Karlin has served as acting director since the beginning of the Fall 2018 term as Professor Eliot A. Cohen was named Executive Vice Dean. Karlin continues in her role as Executive Director of The Philip Merrill Center for Strategic Studies. 
In accepting the appointment, Karlin extolled the school's legacy of developing future strategic leaders. "As a two-time alumna of the Strategic Studies program at Johns Hopkins SAIS, I know firsthand the tremendous program that Eliot Cohen has built over nearly three decades and I couldn’t be more honored to follow in his footsteps."  
In the past year, Karlin has introduced exciting advancements to the Strategic Studies program, bringing to campus special events including a conference with defense leaders who examined the civil-military divide in U.S. society, the Commission on the National Defense Strategy of the United States, and the sitting Secretary of Defense who unveiled the nation’s defense strategy at the school.
“I could not be more pleased that Mara Karlin is stepping up to the role of Director of Strategic Studies,” said her predecessor Executive Vice Dean Eliot Cohen, "She brings stellar qualities in so many areas - teaching, scholarship, policy engagement, and academic leadership. Expect innovation, academic ambition and new achievements for a program that has already accomplished so much."
Prior to joining the school in 2017, Karlin served in national security roles for five U.S. Secretaries of Defense, advising on policies spanning strategic planning, defense budgeting, future wars, and regional affairs involving the Middle East, Europe, and Asia. In her most recent role as the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Strategy and Force development, she crafted strategies for navigating the future international security landscape, was a key architect of several mission-critical Defense Department strategies, and guided U.S. national security policy that shaped the Pentagon’s more than $600 billion budget.
Karlin teaches classes on strategy & policy and civil-military relations, and is the author of Building Militaries in Fragile States: Challenges for the United States (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2018). She received her B.A. summa cum laude in Political Science from Newcomb College, Tulane University; and both an M.A. with distinction in Strategic Studies, Middle East Studies, and Economics and a Ph.D. in International Relations from Johns Hopkins SAIS. Karlin has been recognized with numerous awards including the Department of Defense Medals for Meritorious and Outstanding Public Service.
She has frequently testified before Congress, served on Congressional commissions, and delivered briefings to senior national security policymakers and the intelligence community officials. Her comments on defense and Middle East affairs can be found in a wide variety of outlets including CNN, NPR, and The Washington Post.
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Johns Hopkins SAIS
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About Johns Hopkins SAIS
A division of Johns Hopkins University, the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) is a global institution that offers students an international perspective on today's critical issues. For 75 years, Johns Hopkins SAIS has produced great leaders, thinkers, and practitioners of international relations. Public leaders and private sector executives alike seek the counsel of the faculty, whose ideas and research inform and shape policy. Johns Hopkins SAIS offers a global perspective across three campus locations: Bologna, Italy; Nanjing, China; and Washington, D.C. The school's interdisciplinary curriculum is strongly rooted in the study of international economics, international relations, and regional studies, preparing students to address multifaceted challenges in the world today.
For more information, visit or @SAISHopkins

Thursday, March 28, 2019
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