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Executive Committee


Yuliy Baryshnikov

YULIY BARYSHINIKOV has been a Professor of Mathematics and Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign since 2011. Before that he was a Department Head at Bell Laboratories, and held several academic positions in Europe. He is currently an Associate editor of Stochastic Models and Journal of Applied and Computational Topology, and runs a column in The Mathematical Intelligencer. In 2016-2019 he was the Chair of the Committee on Mathematical Research Communities of the American Mathematical Society. His awards include Alexander von Humbold Fellowship, Lady Davis Professorship at Technion, Simons Fellowship in Mathematics. He was also the PI on numerous research grants from the federal agencies, including the NSF-funded Program on Illinois Interdisciplinary Internships, and the DoD-funded Multi-University Research Initiative HyDDRA. Baryshnikov's research spreads across several areas in mathematics and control theory. Among the areas of applications, he is interested in quantitative analysis of societal processes, such as societal polarization, problems of social choice, data analysis in political science and economics.

Lee DeVille


Brett Kaufman

BRETT KAUFMAN (co-chair) is Assistant Professor of the Classics at University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. He is an archaeologist, Semitic languages specialist, and archaeometallurgist. His research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the National Geographic Society, the National Natural Science Foundation of China, and the Getty Research Institute. U of I’s College of Liberal Arts & Sciences recognized him with the Lincoln Excellence for Assistant Professors award. He has directed or supervised archaeological excavations in Tunisia, China, Italy, Israel, and New York, and has published his research in the top archaeology journals, including Current AnthropologyAntiquityJournal of Archaeological ScienceArchaeometryJournal of Anthropological ArchaeologyAmerican Journal of Archaeology, and Science, among others. He is the founding managing editor of the peer-reviewed archaeological science journal Advances in Archaeomaterials, and the president of the Archaeological Institute of America-Central Illinois Chapter. His work combatting discrimination on campuses has included an article in Fathom, organizing the conference “Antisemitism on the American Campus”, and publishing a chapter exposing academic fraud targeting Jews. 

Cary Nelson

CARY NELSON (co-chair) is Jubilee Professor of Liberal Arts & Sciences and Professor of English Emeritus at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. He taught at Illinois from 1970-2006, including seminars on Holocaust poetry. He was national president of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) from 2006-2012, after serving as vice-president the six previous years . He is presently Chair of the Alliance for Academic Freedom (AAF). He is the author of over 400 articles and the author or editor of 36 books. His op eds have appeared in The Jerusalem Post, the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and other venues. Among his publications are 6 books at the intersection of antisemitism, academic freedom, and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict: The Case Against Academic Boycotts of Israel (coed, 2015), Dreams Deferred: A Concise Guide to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict & the Movement to Boycott Israel (2015), Israel Denial: Anti-Zionism, Anti-Semitism, & The Faculty Campaign Against the Jewish State (2019), Not In Kansas Anymore: Academic Freedom in Palestinian Universities (2021), Peace and Faith: Christian Churches and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (coed, 2021), Hate Speech and Academic Freedom: The Antisemitic Assault on Basic Principles (2024). He also has a number of books about modern poetry and about the politics and economics of higher education. His work is the subject of an edited collection, Cary Nelson and the Struggle for the University. At UIUC he has served on the LAS Executive Committee, the Campus Committee on Promotion and Tenure, and the Faculty Senate. He has been continuously active in the struggle against academic boycotts in several disciplinary associations since the 2006-2007 academic year. He has given presentations about the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict and antisemitism at numerous universities and associations in Britain, Canada, Israel, and the US. He is a Research Fellow at the London Centre for the Study of Contemporary Antisemitism (LCSCA) and a steering committee member and Senior Research Fellow at The Institute for the Study of Global Antisemitism and Policy (ISGAP). He holds an honorary doctorate from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev.

Barbara J. Risman

BARBARA J. RISMAN is College of Liberal Arts & Sciences Distinguished Professor of Sociology at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Professor Risman recently ended a four year term as Editor of Gender & Society, a highly ranked sociology journal. She currently sits on the National Chapter Advisory board for the Scholars Strategy Network. She has held leadership roles in several professional organizations including President of the Board of Directors and Executive Officer of the Council on Contemporary Families, President of Sociologists for Women in Society, President of Southern Sociological Society, and Vice-President of the American Sociological Association. Her most recent books are Where the Millennials Will Take Us: A New Generation Wrestles with the Gender Structure (Oxford, 2018) and the Handbook on the Sociology of Gender (co-edited with Froyum and Scarborough, Springer 2018). The
American Sociological Association honored Professor Risman with the 2011 Award for the Public Understanding of Sociology Award. In 2005, Dr. Risman was honored with the Katherine Jocher Belle Boone Award from the Southern Sociological Society for lifetime contributions to the study of gender. Professor Risman has been a Visiting Fellow at SciencesPo in Paris, The Institute for Advanced Studies at Durham University in the UK, and the Center for Advanced Study of Behavioral Sciences at Stanford. Professor Risman strongly believes that sociologist have a responsibility to both do good research and apply that research to help the communities studied, and society at large. Professor Risman co-chaired the university wide Faculty Equity committee at UIC for over a decade and has recently become active in the newly formed UIC Faculty Against Anti-Semitism group.

Richard Ross

RICHARD J. ROSS is the David C. Baum Professor of Law and Professor of History at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. He is the founder and director of the Symposium on Comparative Early Modern Legal History. Every two years, the Symposium presents a conference that gathers law professors, historians, and social scientists to discuss a particular topic in comparative legal history (c.1492-1815). His research has focused primarily on the development of early American law in a comparative, Atlantic world context. He is the co-editor, with Brian Owensby, of Justice in a New World: Negotiating Legal Intelligibility in British, Iberian, and Indigenous America (2018); and with Lauren Benton, of Legal Pluralism and Empires, 1500-1850 (2013). Active in the American Society for Legal History, he has twice been appointed to the executive committee of the Board of Directors. He serves/has served on the editorial boards of Comparative Legal History, Law and History Review, and Law and Society Review. He has been a visiting professor at Hebrew University Law School (May 2012) and Tel Aviv University Law School (May-June 2015). In spring 2019, he was a visiting scholar in a research group on “Rethinking Early Modern Jewish Legal Culture: New Sources, Methodologies and Paradigms” at the Israeli Institute for Advanced Study, Hebrew University. At UIUC, he serves on the Chancellor’s Advisory Council on Jewish and Campus Life.

Helaine Silverman

HELAINE SILVERMAN is a Full Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. She is a past editor of the top-ranked journal, Latin American Antiquity, and serves/has served on the editorial boards of International Journal of Heritage Studies, Heritage & Society, American Anthropologist, Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology and World Art. She is a member of the advisory boards of ICOMOS-USA and Illinois State Historical Society. She is a past advisor to the Culture and Rights Project of the Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn
Anthropology Centre of Silpakorn University, Bangkok (2009-2013). In 2011 she served on the expert panel on “Cultural Rights as Human Rights” convened by the United Nations High Commissioner on Human Rights in Geneva. She is an affiliate of the Cambridge Heritage Research Centre at the University of Cambridge, UK. In 2016 she received the University of Illinois’ Sheth Distinguished Faculty Award for International Achievement. Much of her recent research focuses on how the past is used and misused in the present in politicized cultural heritage conflicts and the tension between heritage claims and history in the production of national identity. In addition to her authored articles, she is the editor/co-editor of seven volumes on heritage themes: Cultural Heritage and Human Rights (Springer, 2007), Intangible Heritage Embodied (Springer, 2009), Contested Cultural Heritage (Springer, 2011), Cultural Heritage Politics in China (Springer, 2013), Encounters with Popular Pasts (Springer, 2015), Heritage in Action (Springer, 2017) and Heritage of Death (Routledge, 2018).

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