Message from the Director
Welcome to LACC!
Much has happened at LACC since I wrote in this space nearly five years ago as I arrived to assume the position of director. For one thing, thanks to a US$2.5 million transformational gift from the Green Family Foundation, we are now known as the Kimberly Green Latin American and Caribbean Center. In the last five years we have pressed forward to implement the mission, priorities and goals set out in the strategic plan titled “Reimagine LACC”. Space does not permit a comprehensive description of the programs and research projects that led to accomplishing key priorities, specifically deepening links between academia and policy, broadening our academic programming and furthering the expansion of our interdisciplinary research agenda.
We remain committed to supporting faculty and students and to leveraging FIU’s significant intellectual resources to engage the complex, interdisciplinary theoretical and policy challenges of today. LACC’s intellectual resources continue to increase; our more than 250 faculty members make it one of the largest concentrations of specialized scholars among all academic centers working in and on the region. We continue to draw upon this depth and breadth of scholars and students to enhance our scholarly and policy research and outreach programming on public health, governance and security, environment and poverty and inequality.
LACC continues to deepen its ties with local and national communities, hosting a number of workshops, conferences, and outreach activities that bring together the private sector, government and academic institutions —including K-12 schools and state colleges— for discussions and training opportunities that enhance the knowledge and capabilities of these groups to engage issues and opportunities in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Through its platform of integrated teaching, research and outreach activities, LACC offers its students in the Bachelors of Arts in Latin American and Caribbean Studies (BALACS, offered since 2016) and in the Masters of Arts in Latin American and Caribbean Studies (MALACS,1997) a selection of rigorous programs tailored to prepare them for a wide-range of careers in government, business, the non-profit sector, the environmental sciences, research institutions, development agencies, academia and the culture and arts communities. We currently offer the BALACS degree on-line. Additionally, LACC offers several certificates, including Haitian Studies, one of the few in the country.
Add to this, a privileged location that provides students with the unique opportunity to study and work in the U.S.’ most vibrant, diverse and dynamic “gateway” city to Latin American and Caribbean nations.
I am delighted to invite you to look at our Center’s web page for information on our programs of study and the activities and resources that FIU provides in Latin American and Caribbean studies. We look forward to hearing from you and are ready to answer any questions you might have.
Frank O. Mora is Director of the Kimberly Green Latin American and Caribbean Center (LACC) and Professor of Politics and International Relations at Florida International University (FIU), Miami, FL. Prior to arriving at FIU, Dr. Mora served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for the Western Hemisphere from 2009-2013. He has held several teaching positions, including Professor of National Security Strategy and Latin American Studies at the National War College, National Defense University (2004-2009) and Associate Professor and Chair in the Department of International Studies, Rhodes College (2000-2004).
During the last twenty years Dr. Mora worked as a consultant to the Library of Congress, the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS), the National Democratic Institute, U.S. State Department, the Organization of American States, and U.S. Southern Command. He has spoken at numerous conferences in the United States, Latin America and Europe. His opinion pieces and other commentaries have appeared in US and Latin American media outlets.
Dr. Mora is the author or editor of four books, including Latin American and Caribbean Foreign Policy (Rowman and Littlefield, 2003), Paraguay and the United States: Distant Allies (University of Georgia Press, 2008) and Neighborly Adversaries: U.S. Latin American Relations (Rowman and Littlefield, 2015); and over thirty academic and policy articles, book chapters and monographs on hemispheric security, U.S.-Latin American relations, civil-military relations, Cuban politics and military and Latin American political economy and integration.
Dr. Mora graduated with a B.A. in International Affairs from The George Washington University in 1986. He received his M.A. in Inter-American Studies and a Ph.D. in International Affairs from the University of Miami. He also completed studies at universities in Peru and Costa Rica. He is a recipient of the Office of the Secretary of Defense Medal for Exceptional Public Service, Department of Defense (2012).