PSA Staff

Andrew K. Semmel
Executive Director

Andrew Semmel is the Executive Director of Partnership for a Secure America. In 2008, Dr. Semmel started AKS Consulting, representing international clients in Washington, D.C. He joined the Department of State in Spring 2003 as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Nuclear Nonproliferation in the Department’s Bureau of Nonproliferation and continued in that role in the newly formed Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation. His primary responsibilities included the development and execution of policies and initiatives to stem the spread of nuclear weapons, associated technologies and know-how, including export controls. He represented the Department in inter-agency meetings, bilateral and multilateral international fora, conferences and negotiations on nuclear nonproliferation issues.

From September 2001 to January 2003, he served as the Executive Director of the U.S.-China Security Review Commission, a bipartisan government Commission of twelve private citizens appointed by the Congressional leadership. He was responsible for the Commission's public hearings, research, briefings, foreign travel, and the preparation of an annual report of findings and recommendations to the Congress on the security implications of economic and financial relations between the U.S. and China.

He served on the personal staff of Senator Richard G. Lugar from 1987 to 2001, where he was the Senator’s senior Legislative Assistant for Foreign Policy. He assisted Senator Lugar on political/economic/security issues in all regions of the world. Beyond current foreign policy/national security matters, he paid special attention to international exchange programs, trade, democracy promotion, sanctions policy, human rights, international organizations, and others.

He has authored or co-authored publications on diverse foreign policy and national security issues. He has served as President of the Comparative Foreign Policy Section of the International Studies Association and the Governing Board of International Studies Association.

He received his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan and has been a Tenured Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Cincinnati. He has also been an Adjunct Visiting Professor in the Master of Science in Foreign Service Program (MSFS) at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. In 1981, he took a position with the Department of Defense as a Foreign Affairs Specialist in the Defense Security Assistance Agency (DSAA). He served as Chief of the Analysis Division of DSAA until he moved to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in February 1985, where he had primary responsibility for the U.S. security assistance legislation, arms sales, and related foreign policy and national security issues.

He has traveled to nearly forty countries, has been an official observer to national elections in a dozen countries, and has spoken and lectured to various domestic and foreign audiences.

In 1995, he received the Ohio University College of Arts and Sciences Significant Achievement Award, and in 1996 he received the Moravian College Comenius Alumni Award for outstanding achievement. He was inducted into the Pennsylvania Athletic Hall of Fame and the Moravian College Athletic Hall of Fame. He enjoys jogging, fishing, hiking, gardening, most sports, film, reading and cooking. He is married and has an adult son.


Nathan Sermonis
Deputy Executive Director

Nathan Sermonis is the Deputy Executive Director with Partnership for a Secure America. He manages PSA programming priorities and plays a key role in organizational development. Nathan comes to PSA with a diverse background in policy and politics. Prior to working at PSA, he served as a policy adviser in the U.S. House of Representatives, Congressional campaign aide, and political writer. Nathan has a particular interest in global energy markets, trade, conflict resolution, and climate. He holds a B.S. from Cornell University.


Rosie Julin
Congressional Programs Associate

Rosie Julin comes to PSA with hands-on, international education and time on Capitol Hill. She considers herself a global student, with extensive experience resolving cultural differences and communicating across language barriers. Rosie was a full time French student for two and a half years in Tours, France where she studied sociology and international relations. She has traveled extensively and is bilingual in English and French. She organizes congressional policy briefings, assists with the Congressional Partnership Program (CPP), and has created PSA’s new collegiate scholar program.


Audrey Williams
Program Associate

Audrey Williams is a Program Associate at Partnership for a Secure America. She provides support to the PSA/USIP Congressional Briefing Series and to an international working group study on International Atomic Energy Agency missions on nuclear security and technical cooperation. Prior to joining PSA, Audrey was a Herbert Scoville Jr. Peace Fellow at the Stimson Center, where she researched the nexus between security and development. Her particular interests include nuclear nonproliferation and security, counterterrorism policy, and international security and development cooperation. She has studied abroad in Istanbul, Turkey, and Fez, Morocco. She holds a B.A. from the University of Iowa and speaks French and Turkish.


Jenifer Mackby
Senior Adviser

Jenifer Mackby is a Senior Adviser at the Partnership for a Secure America. She is an adjunct fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, where she works on the Asian and European Trilateral Nuclear Dialogues, U.S.-U.K. Nuclear Cooperation, Strengthening the Global Partnership project, a Russian-European project on bioterrorism, among others.

Previously, she served as senior political affairs officer for the negotiations on the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT), the Group of Scientific Experts, Transparency in Armaments and the Biological Weapons Convention review process in Geneva, and then as secretary of the Working Group on Verification at the CTBT Organization Preparatory Commission in Vienna. She also worked in the United Nations on nuclear, biological, conventional, and outer space issues.

She has co-authored a number of books, including, Detect and Deter: Can Countries Verify the Nuclear Test Ban?, Global Biosecurity: Towards a New Governance Paradigm, The Nuclear Tipping Point: Why States Reconsider their Nuclear Choices. She has also written articles for the New York Times, Newsweek, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, publications of the National Defense University and the European Union Joint Research Center. Ms. Mackby has served as rapporteur for several international conferences, and has spoken at conferences in Europe, Asia, South America and the US. She has lectured at universities and speaks fluent French and Spanish.


Ken Cummings
Senior Adviser

Ken Cummings is a senior adviser to a leadership member of the U.S. House of Representatives. In his volunteer role with PSA Ken advises on matters relating to education programs, assists in coordinating input on all issues from the alumni of PSA's Congressional Partnership Program and provides senior-level advice and guidance on a wide array of PSA’s activities. Prior to his current position, he was director of international affairs for the Maryland Secretary of State. He has been a researcher and translator at the Woodrow Wilson Center and the Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies and he is a veteran. He is a graduate of the University of Maryland, American University, the Culinary Institute of America and is the author of articles on organizational management and of a forthcoming book on American politics.


Lauren Barnhart
Foreign Affairs Intern

Lauren Barnhart is a fall intern at PSA. She graduated from Syracuse University with a B.A. in International Relations and Russian Language. While at Syracuse, Lauren studied abroad in both Saint Petersburg, Russia and Madrid, Spain. She is currently pursuing an M.A. at American University in US Foreign Policy and National Security. As an intern, Lauren assists with the Congressional Partnership Program and the Harvard Negotiation Program as well as conducting research on legislative issues.


Bart Carfagno
Foreign Affairs Intern

Bart Carfagno is a fall intern at PSA and an M.A. candidate at George Washington’s Elliott School of International Affairs. Bart’s area of interest is East Asia, focusing on China’s military, government, and nuclear capacity. He graduated summa cum laude with a BA in International Studies from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, and has lived two years total in four cities in China and Taiwan: Shanghai, Beijing, Mianyang, and Pingdong. This time was mostly dedicated to language and cultural study. After finishing his masters he plans to pursue a career with the federal government as a China area analyst dealing with China’s naval buildup and nuclear capacity and strategy.