d'Estree small 160X17 2014Professor Claude d’Estrée – Director

M.T.S., J.D., is the Director of both the International Human Rights Program and the Center on Rights Development at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies as well as the Buddhist Chaplain at the University of Denver. He is a graduate of Harvard Divinity School where he studied comparative religion and was appointed as the first Buddhist Chaplain at Harvard University by His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, and a graduate of Northeastern University School of Law where he focused on critical legal studies and prisoner’s rights. Before coming to the University of Denver in 2002 he was at the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Washington, DC.

IMG_5047 BWLaurel Hayden – Associate Director

Laurel is a second year M.A. candidate in the International Human Rights Program with a concentration in Minority and Indigenous Rights. She received her undergraduate education at the University of Denver, where she earned her B.A. in International Studies with a minor in History. This summer, Laurel interned in Quito, Ecuador at the Confederación Nacional de Organizaciones Campesinas, Indígenas y Negras (FENOCIN) where she helped advocate for the Indigenous land and water rights. Laurel has also interned with Mi Casa Resource Center in Denver, Colorado where she worked with the Latino community as a bilingual career coach.  She has also spent time with the Oglala Lakota Sioux Nation on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota working to improve quality of life on the reservation, while simultaneously preserving culture.  A native of Colorado, Laurel enjoys camping and hiking and a good bowl of green chili.

KIMG_5140 BWristen Renda – Symposium & Events Coordinator

Kristen first developed a passion for human rights advocacy as a Cross-Cultural Solutions volunteer in India working on education reform. She received a B.A. in Cultural Anthropology from the University of Nevada, Reno with minors in Religious Studies and Ethnic studies. Through coursework in Arabic, Islamic law, and Middle Eastern history Kristen wrote her senior research paper on the Islamic Human Rights legal tradition before spending the summer in Egypt at the Arabic Language Institute at the American University of Cairo. She is now a second year MA candidate in the International Human Rights program with an interdisciplinary International Human Rights Law Certificate and concentrations in gender and refugee rights. This past summer she completed an internship with Refugee Women’s Alliance in Seattle. She enjoys cooking, yoga and partner acrobatics.

IMG_5125 BWCorey Greer – Symposium & Events Assistant

Corey earned her BA in Anthropology from the University of Florida, with minors in International Development and Spanish. She is now a 1st year MA candidate in International Human Rights at the University of Denver. Corey spent the last few years soul searching in the Patagonian Andes, on a lavender farm and vineyard on Vancouver Island and in the jungle outside Taipei. During her time in Colorado, she would like to conquer as many 14ers as possible while furthering her knowledge on human trafficking and gender issues in Eastern Europe and the Middle East.


Jordan Rief – Research & Education C0-Coordinator

Jordan is a second year M.A. candidate in the International Development program with a certificate in Global Health Affairs and focusing on HIV prevention and gender issues in Sub-Saharan Africa. Prior to attending the Josef Korbel School of International Studies, she served as a Peace Corps volunteer in northern Mozambique where she developed training models for rural community health workers. Jordan earned her B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Southern California with minors in Peace & Conflict Studies and Psych & Law. Last summer she completed an internship with USAID in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia where she worked as a Gender Specialist Intern with the Pathfinder-implemented Integrated Family Health Program. She is currently interning for the World Health Organization in Geneva as an HIV/AIDS Communications Intern and participating in the Korbel in Geneva Program.

BW KatieKathryn Bryant – Research & Education C0-Coordinator

Kathryn Bryant is a second year Master’s Candidate in the International Security Program with a focus on Intelligence Studies and the relationship between food security and conflict in African states. She received her undergraduate education at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia, earning her B.A. in International Studies with concentrations in Global Development and Environmental Affairs with Minors in Spanish and Sociology in May 2013. In the fall of 2014, she was the Government Affairs intern at the United Nations Environment Programme RONA in Washington, D.C. Previously, she has interned with the Argentine Network for International Cooperation in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Habitat for Humanity, and Refugee and Immigration Services. She enjoys folk music, ice cream, and exploring Colorado’s many hiking trails.

IMG_5064Eli Banghart – Research & Education Assistant

Eli is a first year M.A. candidate in International Security with a certificate in Homeland Security. He received his B.A. in International Studies and French from Washington College in Chestertown, MD. At Korbel, Eli focuses on North and West African relations towards the international system and U.S. foreign policy. His study abroad experience in Morocco proved as a means to focus on human rights after working for the Azrou Centre on Development and researching the rights of native groups in the country. Eli also enjoys tennis and exploring Denver.

bwMarissa Loterina – Communications & Media C0- Coordinator

Marissa is a second year M.A. Candidate in International Development with concentrations in human rights, education, gender, and health. She received her B.A. in International Affairs and Sociology with a minor in Spanish at the University of Georgia in Athens, GA. Marissa has interned at EMILY’s List and the Office of Presidential Correspondence at the White House, located in Washington, DC. She has studied abroad in Stellenbosch, South Africa where she participated in a service engagement project. This past summer she interned with Volunteers Peru in Arequipa and Cotahuasi, Peru working on projects focusing on rural education and social development. As a result of her past experiences, she is interested in educating children in developing countries in order for them to know of various opportunities available to them. When she’s not working, she enjoys dancing and singing around her apartment, eating chocolate, and a good afternoon siesta.

IMG_5132 BWTara Dillon – Communications & Media Co-Coordinator

Tara is a second year M.A. candidate in the International Studies program with a concentration in development and conflict resolution. She received her undergraduate education at Stony Brook University in New York, where she earned her B.A. in Journalism and Global Affairs. After working as a news producer in New York for two years, she decided to change career paths to the development field. She is currently interning at Project C.U.R.E. helping deliver bags of basic preventative health care supplies to clinics in over 130 countries. When she’s not working, Tara enjoys hiking, skiing and lots of pasta.

IMG_5028 BWJessica Ruch – Community Outreach & Strategic Development Coordinator

Jessica is a first year M.A. candidate in the International Development program, focusing on education and gender equality. She received her BA in International Development and German at the University of Oregon. After receiving her degree, Jessica worked as a Youth Development Volunteer with Peace Corps Ukraine from 2010-2012. This international experience at a village school, inspired her to teach English in Europe and Asia and pursue a career in education and development. She loves traveling and exploring new cities, playing soccer, and quilting.

IMG_5147 BWDaniel Myers – Communications & Media Intern

Dan is a second year undergraduate majoring in International Studies with a concentration in International Health and Development. He interned with the Lutheran Family Services Refugee Resettlement Program this summer in Colorado Springs, where he provided services to refugees from all over the world. Returning to CORD from last year, Dan hopes to study abroad in Africa next fall after conducting research over the summer, and to pursue interests in water rights and refugee related issues. He enjoys poetry, pie in all of its forms, and a game of gin rummy.