Faculty Spotlight: Andrew Natsios

Andrew Natsios

Andrew Natsios, Director of the Scowcroft Institute of International Affairs and Executive Professor, brings a wealth of experience in public service to his teaching. During his long and distinguished career, Natsios has been a state legislator, military officer, NGO vice president, civil servant, diplomat, professor, and leader of one of the largest and most controversial public works projects. His extensive government, nonprofit, and diplomatic experience ensures that Natsios is an instructor who can connect with Bush School students regardless of their background or their career interests. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University and a master of public administration degree from the John F. Kennedy School at Harvard University.

Natsios came to the Bush School after teaching at Georgetown University for the past six and a half years. A native of Holliston, Massachusetts, he began his public service career in the Massachusetts state legislature and served as the chairman of the Republican Party there from 1980-1987. Natsios was involved with George H.W. Bush’s presidential campaigns and joined President Bush’s administration in 1988 as head of the Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance at USAID, the federal agency responsible for administering humanitarian and long-term development assistance to developing countries. Natsios later served as the administrator of USAID for nearly five years under President George W. Bush. Following this appointment, Natsios was asked to serve in another capacity for the Bush administration as US Envoy to Sudan.

For the next eighteen months, Natsios served not only as the envoy to Sudan, but kept his job as a professor at Georgetown and would go back and forth between the university and the State Department. International diplomacy and other related jobs are only part of a long and impressive resume that demonstrates his leadership and management abilities. Natsios has also served as vice president of World Vision, the largest faith-based NGO in the world and oversaw the controversial “Big Dig” construction project in Boston from 2000-2001. In 1995, he retired as a lieutenant colonel in the United States Army after leading a unit that helped with reconstruction efforts in Kuwait following the country’s liberation in the Gulf War.

Natsios joined the faculty of the Master’s Program in International Affairs at the urging of Dean Andrew Card. Card is a longtime friend with whom he worked while serving in the Massachusetts House of Representatives and as co-chairman of George H.W. Bush’s campaigns in the state in 1980 and 1988. The two have shared political victories and defeats, and have remained fast friends for forty years.

Natsios’ research and writing focuses on foreign assistance, humanitarian aid, famines, and political instability. He is the author of three books: U.S. Foreign Policy and the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (1997); The Great North Korean Famine (2001); and his latest book, Sudan, South Sudan and Darfur: What Everyone Needs to Know, published in 2012 by Oxford University Press. He has contributed to thirteen other books.

One of the most popular courses, Natsios teaches Famines, Wars and Humanitarian Assistance and hopes to give courses on development theory and foreign aid in the spring, depending on student and faculty demand. He structures his courses to provide practical skills built on an analytical and theoretical foundation and wants his students to be prepared to manage in the public sector, particularly in an international aid or foreign policy institution.

“The best courses in a terminal degree program like this should prepare you for a career – and hopefully a career in public service,” Natsios said.

Along with his wife, Elizabeth, Natsios has been enjoying life in Texas and focuses on its similarities to Maryland rather than its differences. He has three grown children and likes cooking and fishing at his summer home in Maine and is active in the St. Silouan Antiochian Orthodox Church. Natsios also serves on various nonprofit boards, including as the co-chairman of the Committee on Human Rights in North Korea.

Since moving to the area, Natsios and his wife have developed an interest in historical preservation efforts in Bryan and have continued their love of symphony music. Natsios enjoys being able to focus on writing and research and is impressed with the quality of students at the Bush School.