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Homeland Security Master’s Degrees Awarded to 29

MONTEREY, Calif. – Twenty-nine professionals earned a Master of Arts in security studies from the Naval Postgraduate School Center for Homeland Defense and Security during ceremonies Sept. 21.

The graduates represent a snapshot of homeland security across the country and include leaders from the Department of Homeland Security and its related agencies, law enforcement, fire safety, emergency management, public health, the military and academia (please see attached list).

"These graduates bring great credit to themselves and their professions. They will join the expanding network of homeland security leaders who are shaping the future of our nation," said CHDS Director Glen Woodbury.

CHDS began offering classes in 2003, the first master’s degree program centered on the then-fledgling field of homeland security. The program is interdisciplinary and covers topics including intelligence, critical infrastructure protection, cyber-security, the psychology of terrorism and other emerging issues. Graduate complete theses on real-world issues facing their respective agencies.

Three graduate earned class awards.

  • Captain Steven Chumley of the Virginia State Police earned the Philip Zimbardo Award. This award honors a student who demonstrates the best understanding of the psychological aspects of terrorism and whose performance in the master’s program best embodies the highest levels of academic achievement and outstanding leadership. The honor is named after Stanford University psychologist Philip Zimbardo, who also teaches at CHDS.
  • Lynda Peters, prosecutor with the city of Chicago, earned the Curtis H. "Butch" Straub Award, which is based on grades, thesis and classroom leadership. The honor is in memory of one of CHDS’ founders.
  • John Zambri, detective with the Los Angeles Police Department, earned the Best Thesis Award. Theses were evaluated on: overall academic rigor; quality of the literature review; impact of the study on homeland security strategy and future research implications; quality of analysis and conclusions; quality of organization, writing and overall presentation of thesis. Zambri’s thesis was titled, "Social Media, Social Networking, Facial Recognition Technology and the Future of Law Enforcement Undercover Operations."

Naval Postgraduate School Center for Homeland Defense and Security

Graduates 9.21.12

  • Richard Alexander, Watch Commander, Tulsa Police Department, Tulsa, Okla.
  • Edward Baldini, Lieutenant - Counter Terrorism Operations Philadelphia Police Department - Homeland Security Unit, Philadelphia.
  • Michael Barner, U.S. Coast Guard, Commander - Executive Officer , USCG Civil Engineering Unit Cleveland, Cleveland, Ohio.
  • Edward Bushman, Battalion Chief, Los Angeles Fire Department, Los Angeles.
  • Steven Chumley, Captain - Division One Commander, Virginia State Police, Chesterfield, Va.
  • Robert Covert II, Fire Lieutenant, Ithaca Fire Department, Ithaca N.Y.
  • Shane Crofts, Logistics Management Officer, LTC/O-5, Wyoming Army National Guard, Cheyenne, Wyo.
  • Dennis Joshua, District Chief - Executive Assistant to the Fire Commissioner, Chicago Fire Department, Chicago.
  • Michael Fahy, Captain, New York City Fire Department, New York.
  • John Farrell, Deputy Managing Director/City Services Coordinator/Managing Director's Office/City of Philadelphia.
  • Lisa Forsyth, Force Health Protection Officer, Headquarters, U.S. Army North, Fort Sam Houston, Texas.
  • Jason Hart, Lieutenant Commander, Texas Army National Guard, Austin, Texas.
  • Jeffrey Kaliner, Public Health Emergency Preparedness Liaison, Oregon State Public Health, Eugene, Ore.
  • Michael Larranaga, Professor/Director - Homeland Security Scholars Program, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Okla.
  • Jonathan Lewin, Managing Deputy Director, Office of Emergency Management and Communications, city of Chicago.
  • Harold Lucie, Attorney, DHS/Federal Emergency Management Agency, Washington, D.C.
  • Michael Mealer, Commander, Chicago Police Department, Chicago.
  • Lynda Peters, City Prosecutor, City of Chicago Corporation Counsel's Office.
  • Alfred Poirier, Captain II - Disaster Preparedness Officer, Los Angeles Fire Department, Sherman Oaks, Calif.
  • John Powell, Fire Science and Paramedic Program Director, Division of Public Safety East Tennessee Public Safety Center, Walters State Community College, Morristown, Tenn.
  • Mathew Rush, Captain, Austin Fire Department, Georgetown, Texas.
  • Jennifer Schaal, Homeland Security Section Supervisor, Washington State Emergency Management Division, Camp Murray, Wash.
  • Kimberly Spill, Emergency Manager, Pompano Beach Fire Rescue, Pompano Beach, Fla.
  • Albert Vasquez, Dean/Chief of Police, Santa Monica College Police Department, Santa Monica, Calif.
  • John Wallace, Police Captain, Riverside Police Department, Riverside, Calif.
  • Christopher Ward, Lieutenant, New York City Fire Department (FDNY), Ft. Totten N.Y.
  • Jody Wormet, Director, Special Operations Bureau, Wisconsin Department of Justice/Division of Criminal Investigation, Madison Wis.
  • Stephanie Yanta, Supervisory Special Agent Federal Bureau of Investigation Washington, D.C.
  • John Zambri, Detective III (Special Projects), Los Angeles Police Department, Los Angeles.