205 W. Wacker Drive, Suite 220
Chicago, IL 60606
Christopher Welna is president of the ACM since 2006. He works with the ACM Board of Directors and with the ACM Advisory Board of Deans to set overall priorities and policies for programs to help strengthen the member colleges as leaders, and exemplars, in liberal arts education. He collaborates with ACM staff, and external donors, to develop and operate programs that enable member colleges to enhance their students' academic growth, to advance the professional development of their faculty and staff, and to augment the sector of residential liberal arts colleges.
Prior to leading the ACM, Welna served as executive director of the Kellogg Institute for International Studies at the University of Notre Dame, directed the Latin American Studies Program and taught Latin American politics. He previously taught public policy at Duke University’s Sanford Institute for Public Policy and was program officer in the fields of international economics and development, human rights and social justice, and governance and public policy, in the Mexico City and Rio de Janeiro offices of The Ford Foundation.
Welna earned his Ph.D. in political science from Duke University, a master’s in public and international affairs and urban and regional planning from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University, and a B.A. in history from Carleton College. His publications include Democratic Accountability in Latin America (Oxford University Press, 2003) and Peace, Democracy and Human Rights in Colombia (University of Notre Dame Press, 2007).
As a student, Welna studied abroad in Brazil and France. He won a Watson Traveling Fellowship that allowed him to travel through southern Europe, the Middle East, West Africa, South Africa and South America, to investigate local views of human rights. He also interned with the U.S. embassy in Guinea Bissau, West Africa, and with the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) in New York City. On weekends Welna can be found exploring the Lake Michigan coastline or the region's waterways by kayak.
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