William & Mary

White House Foreign Policy Advisor Celeste Wallander to Speak at W&M

Dr. WallanderThe Reves Center for International Studies has announced that Dr. Celeste A. Wallander, Special Assistant to the President for Russia & Central Asia, will deliver the 2015-2016 George Tayloe Ross Address on International Peace. Her talk, The Russia Challenge in 2016, will be held Thursday, January 28, 2016, at 5:00pm in Tucker Hall, Room 127A. The lecture is open to the public.

Dr. Celeste A. Wallander is Special Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs and Senior Director for Russia and Central Asia on the National Security Council Staff.  She served in the Office of International Security Affairs (ISA) as the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Russia/Ukraine/Eurasia from May 2009 to July 2012, where she was the principal advisor to the Secretary of Defense on all defense and policy matters as they pertain to Russia, Ukraine, and Eurasia, including the Western Balkans.  From February 2007 through November 2008, she was an advisor on the Obama for America foreign policy campaign team.

Previously, she was a professor in the School of International Service at American University and director of the M.A. Program in Global Governance, Politics, and Security (2009-2013), Transatlantic Fellow of the German Marshall Fund of the United States (2012-2013), visiting professor at Georgetown University (2006-2008), Director and Senior Fellow of the Russia and Eurasia Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (2001-2006), Senior Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, D.C. (2000-2001), and professor of Government at Harvard University (1989-2000). She is the founder of the Program on New Approaches to Russian Security and the Eurasian Strategy Project.

Dr. Wallander’s scholarly and policy work has focused on security relations in Europe and Eurasia.  She is an expert on Russian foreign and security policy, Eurasian security relations, security institutions, Eurasian military and defense issues, and conflict escalation and intervention.  She is the author of over 80 scholarly and public interest publications on these and related topics, and has published books and articles on Russian defense and military strategy, the sources of Russian foreign policy, German-Russian security relations, the economic bases of Ukrainian and Belarusian security policy, security and globalization, HIV/AIDS as a security issue, the role of NATO, and the geopolitics of energy, among other issues.  She has testified before Congress, lectures extensively in the U.S. and abroad, and has served as a media analyst. 

Dr. Wallander received her Ph.D. (1990), M.Phil. (1986) and M.A. (1985) degrees in political science from Yale University, and her B.A. (1983 – summa cum laude) in political science from Northwestern University.  She has received fellowships and research grants from the National Science Foundation, the German Marshall Fund of the United States, the National Council for Soviet and East European Research, Carnegie Corporation of New York, the MacArthur Foundation, Smith-Richardson Foundation, and the Mott Foundation. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Atlantic Council of the United States, and the International Institute for Strategic Studies.

She and her husband, Jeffrey Anderson (a professor at Georgetown University) have three children:  Nathaniel (24), Joey (20), and Genevieve (16).  She is an avid distance runner, and has completed 38 marathons, 3 ultramarathons (50 mile and 50K), and numerous shorter distance races.

Previous Ross lecturers are posted online.