Public Affairs Alliance of Iranian Americans .
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Dr. Leila Golestaneh Austin

As PAAIA's Executive Director, Dr. Leila Golestaneh Austin provides operational direction for the organization, ensuring that PAAIA’s three pillars of influence-building, leadership-building, and bridge-building are met. 

A Professorial Lecturer in Global Theory and History and Middle East Studies at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies (“SAIS”), Dr. Austin served as deputy director of Cultural Conversations at the Foreign Policy Institute at SAIS.  She also manages a multi-year grant that launched the Global Politics and Religion Initiative at SAIS. In addition, Dr. Austin teaches in the Global Security Studies department of Johns Hopkins University’s Zanvyl Krieger School of Arts and Sciences and the American University’s School of International Service. She has previously taught at Georgetown University's Center for Arab Studies and Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs.  

Dr. Austin received her Ph.D. in Political Science from Columbia University and her M.A. in International Affairs from the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies.

To contact Dr. Austin, please email