Board Members

Gretchen M. Alther – current Chairperson

Gretchen Alther is a Senior Leadership Development Specialist at the East-West Center in Honolulu, Hawai’i, where she designs and delivers adult leadership education programs in Hawai’i and across the Asia-Pacific region. With over 15 years’ experience as a humanitarian and international educator, Ms. Alther infuses all of her work with a commitment to equity, justice, and grassroots communities. She directs the Center’s flagship residential course, and also develops initiatives to support female-community leaders in the Pacific Islands, and to build leadership that is peace- and climate-aware. As an occasional consultant for EarthWatch, Ms. Alther facilitates sustainability leadership programs around the world. Recently, she has worked UNFPA in the Arab States Region to help them operationalize their resilience strategy. She was a 2018 Rotary Peace Fellow and earned a professional certificate in peace and conflict resolution at Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok. Ms. Alther earned an M.A. in Sustainable International Development from the Heller School at Brandeis University, a postgraduate certificate from the East-West Center, and a B.A. in Latin American Studies from Texas A&M University.

Jim Anderson

Jim Anderson is a International Peace & Social Justice Activist. He is deeply engaged in intersectional organizing across issue areas. Jim is the President of Peace Action New York State and is State Vice President of Citizen Action of New York. He is a founding member and organizer of the National Black United Front which led the formation of the Third World and Progressive People’s Coalition which helped organize the June 12th 1982 Disarmament Rally in New York City at the U.N.. Jim served as a organizer & leader for the Peace Contingents of both the 2014 NYC and 2017 D.C. Climate Marches.

Mariana Fernandez

Mariana Fernandez

Mariana Fernandez was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She obtained an M.A. in Art History at the Universidad de Buenos Aires. Before joining the staff of the Rosa Luxemburg Stifgung in New York, she served as Human Rights & Press Officer for the Argentine Embassy in  Tel Aviv, Israel. At RLS her primary responsibilities relate to indigenous, feminist and Latin American social movements.

Gary R. Goldstein

Gary R. Goldstein is a theoretical physicist, specializing in high energy particle physics and nuclear physics. As a researcher, teacher and a long time member of Tufts Physics and Astronomy Department, he taught all levels of Physics course along with courses for non-scientists including Physics for Humanists, The Nuclear Age: History and Physics (with Prof. M. Sherwin – History), Physics of Music and Color. He is a political activist on nuclear issues, social equity, anti- war, and environmentalism. He spent several years working in the MIT Program for Science, Technology and International Security and at University of Oxford Department of Theoretical Physics. He was also a Science Education researcher affiliated with the Tufts Education department and TERC, Cambridge, working with K-12 students and teachers in public schools. He is a member of the board of the Massachusetts Peace Action Fund for Education. Over many years he has been giving talks for a general audience about the dangers of nuclear weapons and war.

Paul Joseph

Paul Joseph was recently the Distinguished Chair for the United States-India Education Foundation (Fulbright program) and based at Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi. He is a political sociologist with a Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley (1975). His research specialty is the politics surrounding foreign and defense policy, and especially the impact of public opinion and peace movements on policy outcomes. His books include a decision-making study on the Vietnam War, the debate over nuclear policy, and the security implications of the end of the Cold War. In Are Americans Becoming More Peaceful? he explores the influence of new public sensitivities toward the costs of war on the Bush administration’s management of Operation Iraqi Freedom. He has investigated “human terrain teams,” the social scientists who were embedded in combat brigades in Iraq and Afghanistan, and served as General Editor of the Encyclopedia of War: Social Science Perspectives (Sage Publishers). He has also published articles, review essays, and encyclopedia entries on race and class in the United States, on Maori-Pakeha (European) relations in New Zealand, the memory politics surrounding Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and the influence of peace movements on government policies. He was for many years the director of the Peace and Justice Studies Program at Tufts University, and served two terms as president of the national Peace Studies Association. He has lectured in more than a dozen countries, served as guest curator for a Tufts Art Gallery exhibition based on the materials provided by peace museums in Japan, and experimented with video conferencing technology to develop co-curriculum with the Naval Academy and West Point. His teaching interests include war and peace, globalization, and political sociology, and he was recognized by Tufts University with both the Lillian Liebner Award for Teaching and Guidance and the Seymour Smiches Award for Distinguished Teaching and Advising.

Ray Matsumiya

Ray Matsumiya, a Boston, Massachusetts native, specializes in unofficial diplomacy and cross-cultural exchange programs with a focus on the Middle East/North Africa (MENA) region. During his tenure as the Executive Director at the University of the Middle East Project, Ray has supervised 46 institutes related to conflict resolution and peace education over the past twenty years. These institutes have included over 2500 educators, civil society leaders and others who have gone on to impact hundreds of thousands of young people. Ray has been a invited speaker at TEDx, the Massachusetts State House, the Dayton International Peace Museum, the US embassy of Tunis and numerous universities such as the Sloan School of Management at MIT and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. Ray received his Master’s degree from the Fletcher School at Tufts University and his BA from Wesleyan University. He is a certified mediator under M.G.L. ch.233 § 23C. Ray is fluent in English and proficient in Japanese and Levant Arabic.

Terry Kay Rockefeller

Terry Kay Rockefeller is a documentary film producer who had the great honor of working on Eyes on the Prize, a history of the civil rights and black power movements, and the NOVA science series, among other productions for public television. Terry’s sister, Laura Rockefeller, was killed in the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center. Since 2002, Terry has worked with September 11th Families for Peaceful Tomorrows to honor her sister’s life and try to insure that other families throughout the world do not experience the violent deaths of their innocent relatives. Following the US-led invasion of Iraq, Peaceful Tomorrows began seeking ways to remain supportive of the Iraqi people, and today Terry works with the Iraqi Civil Society Solidarity Initiative, a collaboration between Iraqi and international NGOs to support human rights, democracy, and anti-corruption activists in Iraq. Peaceful Tomorrows is one of the NGOs observing the military tribunals that have been convened at Guantanamo to try those accused of the 9/11 attacks; Peaceful Tomorrows members are deeply concerned that more than 18 years after 9/11, trials have not begun. Terry currently serves on the board of directors of Amnesty International–USA, and as the National Co-convener of United for Peace and Justice, a coalition of U.S. peace, nonviolence and social justice organizations. Terry speaks regularly about the need for non-violent responses to terrorism and pro-active efforts to address the root causes of hatred and violence.

Jerald P. Ross

Jerry Ross serves as Treasurer of the Campaign for Peace, Disarmament and Common Security, is an active member of the Massachusetts Peace Action Nuclear Disarmament Working Group and is the Peace and Disarmament Lead for the First Parish Bedford Unitarian Universalist Peace and Justice Committee. He has also worked on nuclear disarmament issues with the Unitarian Universalist Office of the United Nations and serves as his congregation’s UN Envoy. You can find various articles by him on the UUA International Blog. Jerry holds a Masters degree in Human Service Administration and graduate training in Public Health. Retired from a career as Executive Director of a community mental health center and private practice in organizational consulting, Jerry now devotes considerable energy to the goal of nuclear disarmament. He began his personal peace advocacy efforts as a conscientious objector during the Viet Nam War.

Paul Shannon

Paul Shannon was born in Boston in 1947 and has lived all his life in the greater Boston area. For the past 47 years he has been an activist, writer and speaker in various peace, union, prison reform, human rights, and social justice movements particularly the United Farm workers union drives, the Vietnam anti-war and solidarity movements, the movement to end apartheid in South Africa, the 1980’s Central America and Cambodia solidarity movements, the Haiti solidarity movement and the Afghanistan and Iraq anti-war movements. He is a recently retired staff person for the American Friends Service Committee in Cambridge where he worked for over 4 decades. He continues his 42 year career as an adjunct college instructor and is coordinator of the Raytheon anti-war campaign focused on ending the U.S.-Saudi alliance.

Mark Solomon

Mark Solomon is a retired Professor of History at Simmons University. He is past national co-chair of the United States Peace Council and past member of the Presidential Committee of the World Peace Council. He is also past national co-chair of the Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism. He currently serves a s a member of the Peace and Economic Security Committee of the American Friends Service Committee as well as a board member of the Campaign for Peace, Disarmament and Common Security.

Elaine Scarry

Elaine Scarry teaches at Harvard University where she is the Cabot Professor of Aesthetics. Her recent book – Thermonuclear Monarchy – shows that nuclear weapons and democratic governance are mutually exclusive. We have ready at hand the constitutional tools for dismantling the country’s nuclear architecture, and have an urgent obligation to carry out this work. Elaine was elected to the American Philosophical Society and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Her awards include honorary degrees from Northwestern University in the United States and Uppsala University in Sweden, as well as the Truman Capote Award for literary criticism, and most recently, the Zabel Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters for a “progressive and original” writer. In 2005, Prospect Magazine and Foreign Policy named her one of the top 100 leading intellectuals. She authored The Body in Pain as well as On Beauty and Being Just.

Emily Rubino

Emily Rubino is Director of Policy and Outreach of Peace Action New York State. Emily has been involved with Peace Action New York state in various capacities. She is co-chair of the World Conference Youth Assembly planning committee, a Ploughshares Women’s Initiative spring 2019 grantee, and an International Peace Bureau Council Member. She was a 2018 Japan Peace March International Youth Relay Marcher, and an attendee of the 2018 and 2019 World Conference Against A&H Bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki as a guest of the Japan Women’s Peace Fund (Shinfujin). Emily is dedicated to intersectional activism that recognizes the connections between domestic social justice struggles and international human rights struggles, and looks forward to continuing to advocate for a less oppressive world order. She is a Fordham graduate with a BA in International Humanitarian Affairs and Sociology.

Michael VanElZakker

Michael VanElzakker is a neuroscientist at Massachusetts General Hospital/ Harvard Medical School, and an Instructor at Tufts University. His research is focused on long-term neurological consequences of viral illness and long-term psychiatric consequences of trauma and war. He is particularly focused on the long-term consequences of US policy on the people of the nations it invades and hegemonizes, and in the prospects for health and welfare if public resources can be shifted away from empire and arms dealer profits. He is active in Massachusetts Peace Action, with particular interest in Yemen, nuclear weapons, Korea, and Iran.

Rev. Karlene Griffiths Sekou

Rev. Karlene Griffiths Sekou is an international public theologian, preacher and speaker as well as a community organizer, and international human rights advocate. She is active in the Black Lives Matter Movement as a core leader for BLM Boston, a founding chapter of Black Lives Matter Grassroots where she is the Director for International Relationships and Organizing for the Black Lives Matter Global Network. Karlene has worked across borders and movements alongside Indigenous, Palestinian, Dalit, Immigration, Anti-war and Nuclear abolition liberation struggles in the U.S. and abroad. Karlene was a presenter at the 2017 Ambedkar International Conference in Hyderabad, India; a 2018 delegate to the World Conference Against the A and H Bombs in Hiroshima, and a speaker for the 2020 International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) Conference in Paris, France.