Staff Contact Information
Nicole Cervenka, Research Associate
Nicole Cervenka is a research associate at the National Academy of Sciences, where she contributes to research and programs for the Committee on International Security and Arms Control. Previously, she worked as a consultant through her Oslo-based firm for various organizations, including the Norwegian Centre for Human Rights and the Human Rights Foundation. She also has held various intern and assistant positions at the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs, The Oslo Center for Peace and Human Rights (U.S. Foundation), the University of Minnesota Law School Clinics, and Oregon State University. Nicole holds a M.Sc. in International Relations from the University of Edinburgh and a B.A. in Political Science from St. Olaf College.
Rita Guenther, Senior Program Officer
Rita Guenther is a senior program officer at NAS. Recipient of a Fulbright-Hays-Doctoral Dissertation Research Fellowship, Guenther has worked on or led several cooperative U.S.-Russian and Indo-U.S. projects, including a joint U.S.-Russian workshop on the future of the nuclear security environment in 2015, a study on indigenization of Russian nuclear material protection, control and accounting programs, and Indo-U.S. workshops on science and technology for nuclear material security and on science and technology to counter terrorism. In addition, she has led several consensus studies, including joint studies with the Russian Academy of Sciences. The Office of Science and Technology Policy and the Office of the Science and Technology Advisor to the Secretary of State has consulted her concerning reforms in Russian science. Guenther received the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine distinguished service award in 2007. She speaks Russian fluently and holds a M.A. degree in Russian Studies and a Ph.D. in History from Georgetown University.
Hope Hare, Administrative Assistant
Hope R. Hare is an administrative assistant for CISAC, in the Policy and Global Affairs division of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. Her job includes meeting organization and related travel, bill paying, proposals and contracts, Academy paperwork, sponsor reports, and many other necessary processes. She has worked at the Academy since 2001, and has taken part in many projects. She has a B.A. from George Washington University and an M.F.A. from Cornell University.
Micah Lowenthal, Director
Micah Lowenthal is the director of Committee on International Security and Arms Control (CISAC) and lead for International Networks and Cooperation at the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM). He oversees CISAC’s nuclear, biological, space, and cyber security dialogues with counterparts in Russia, China, and India, as well as international projects on health security, terrorism, nuclear safety and security, treaty monitoring and verification, and preparedness and response to international chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear events. At NASEM he has directed studies that provided strategic direction embraced by skeptical office directors, prevented major mistakes in government and contractor plans, and led to legislative support for needed programmatic changes. Dr. Lowenthal is an elected fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and the American Physical Society (APS) and is a past chair of the APS Forum on Physics and Society. He has testified before the House Committee on Science & Technology and the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee. Previously Dr. Lowenthal was a lecturer and researcher in nuclear engineering at the University of California at Berkeley and a science and technology policy fellow of the AAAS. He is the author or co-author of 15 peer-reviewed journal publications. Dr. Lowenthal earned an A.B. in physics and a Ph.D. in nuclear engineering from U.C. Berkeley.
Benjamin Rusek, Senior Program Officer
Benjamin J. Rusek is a senior program officer for CISAC in the Policy and Global Affairs Division of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. In this role, Ben directs CISAC’s collaborative work with China and has led successful projects with counterpart organizations in other countries on cooperative threat reduction, nuclear forensics, nuclear warhead and material monitoring and verification, nuclear security, biological safety and other international security issues. He served as the co-director for the project that produced the report The Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty: Technical Issues for the United States (2012) and directed the project that produced the report Biosecurity Challenges of the Global Expansion of High-Containment Biological Laboratories (2012). He was a member of the Executive Board of International Student/Young Pugwash (ISYP) and Chair of ISYP from 2008-2013. He previously held various positions at the Henry L. Stimson Center, the Arms Control Association, and the U.S. National Air and Space Museum. Ben has a B.A. in political science from Ohio State University and an M.A. in political science from Purdue University.
Committee on International Security and Arms Control
Keck Center, 5th Floor
500 Fifth Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001
Graduate students interested in working for CISAC should apply through the
Christine Mirzayan Science & Technology Policy Graduate Fellowship Program