Amy Pate is the Research Director at START. She earned a Ph.D. in Government and Politics (Comparative Politics and International Relations) from the University of Maryland in 2007. Prior to joining START as a researcher in 2011, Pate was research director (2007- 2011) and project coordinator (2003-2005, 2006-2007) of the Minorities at Risk Project, based in the Center for International Development and Conflict Management at the University of Maryland. Pate is a specialist in international relations and comparative politics, with particular foci on ethnic politics, democratization, political instability, terrorism, transnational organized crime, and counterinsurgency/ counterterrorism. Pate earned an M.A. in Government and Politics from the University of Maryland in 2005 and her B.A. in Political Science, History, and Russian from Miami University (Ohio) in 1998.