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Faculty and Staff

Center for Social Science Scholarship

Christine Mallinson, Director
Public Policy Building 427, 410-455-1082

Christine Mallinson is Director of the Center for Social Science Scholarship, Professor of Language, Literacy, and Culture, and Affiliate Professor of Gender, Women’s + Sexuality Studies at UMBC. An expert on language and educational inequality, her interdisciplinary research comprehensively examines language as a socially and culturally embedded phenomenon and seeks to dismantle notions about cultural and linguistic difference, in ways that empower communities while informing policy. Past associate editor of the journal American Speech, Mallinson currently serves the chair of the Ethics committee of the Linguistic Society of America and a member of its Committee on Ethnic Diversity in Linguistics. She holds a Ph.D. in Sociology & Anthropology and an M.A. in English Linguistics, both from North Carolina State University, and a B.A. in Sociology and German from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Heather R. Wilpone-Welborn, Program Coordinator
Public Policy Building 428, 410-455-1857

Heather R. Wilpone-Welborn received her PhD in American History from the University of Illinois at Chicago in 2018. She received her M.A. in Social Science from the University of Chicago and her B.A. in History from the University of Virginia with high distinction. Her dissertation, “Revenue Revealed: A Race and Class Analysis of Federal Taxation 1861-1877,” examined the American fiscal-state through Congressional debates to uncover how enslaved persons were treated within the tax code, how the nation implemented the first income tax, and how elites used taxation to avoid conscription. Her work builds on the field of the history of capitalism to think through how fiscal systems allow the state to interact with the perceived private operations of the economy. Her article, “Finding Labor History in the History in the Capitalism” was recently published in Labor: Studies in Working-Class History of the Americas (Duke, 2017). She is also a faculty member of the Liberal Arts Core at the Peabody Institute of The Johns Hopkins University where she teaches on the History of Capitalism & the Arts.

Myriam (Alexander-Kearns) Ralston, External Relations Coordinator
Public Policy Building 404, 410-455-8457

Myriam Ralston received her Master in Public Policy from the McCourt School of Public Policy at Georgetown University in 2014. She received her B.A. in Political Science from Barnard College of Columbia University. She got her start in the non-profit world as an AmericorpsVISTA volunteer at a community action agency in Lowell, MA, and continued to work in human services as a case manager before moving to DC for graduate school. During and after graduate school, Myriam worked at the Georgetown Climate Center, and later at the Center for American Progress, in environmental and energy policy. She joined UMBC in 2018 as the External Relations Coordinator for both the Center for Social Science Scholarship and the School of Public Policy. Myriam also teaches yoga part-time, and loves combining yoga and workplace wellness.


Maryland Institute for Policy, Analysis, and Research (MIPAR)

Deborah Geare, Associate Director
Public Policy Building 424, 410-455-1081

Deb Geare began her career at UMBC in 1995.  She has over 24 years of experience with MIPAR, during which time she has developed a comprehensive understanding of pre- and post-award policies and procedures required for research administration. She graduated magna cum laude with honors from UMBC with a degree in Health Administration and Public Policy  She holds several certifications in research administration and is a member of the National Council of University Research Administrators.  From 2006 to 2010, Deb served as a UMBC staff senator and representative on the University System of Maryland Council of University System Staff where she was the Chair of the Board of Regents Staff awards for several years.  In 2007, she received the Presidential Staff Award in recognition for her contributions and dedication to UMBC.

Carolyn Flowers, Business Manager
Public Policy Building 425, 410-455-1084

Carolyn Flowers has worked in the University of Maryland System since the spring of 2011.  Carolyn began her career in research administration at the University of Maryland, College Park, serving as the Business Manager of the Earth System Science Interdisciplinary Center before joining UMBC in February 2019.  Carolyn now serves as MIPAR’s Business Manager, with a concentration on grant accounting and proposal development.  Carolyn received a B.S. degree in Business Education and holds several certifications in research administration.

Elle Trusz, Business Manager
Public Policy Building 429, 410-455-1083

Elle Trusz started working at UMBC in 2010 in the Department of Gender, Women’s + Sexuality Studies. As the Human Resources liaison for MIPAR, Elle manages payroll and hiring and provides post-award support to faculty, staff, and graduate students. Prior to coming to UMBC, Elle worked in the nonprofit sector and continues to volunteer her time in the Baltimore community as well as at UMBC, including serving as the Staff Co-Chair of the UMBC LGBTQ Faculty and Staff Association.  Elle earned a Bachelor’s of Science in Women’s Studies from the Pennsylvania State University and is currently pursuing a Master’s in Community Leadership at UMBC.

Michele Bange, Administrative Assistant
Public Policy Building 426, 410-455-1080

Michele started working at UMBC in 2018 when she joined MIPAR as an Administrative Assistant.  Previously she worked as an Associate at Morgan Stanley and as a Fiscal Licensing/Budget Specialist for the Maryland Insurance Administration, where she worked for over decade. In MIPAR, Michele is responsible for travel coordination and procurement.  She works closely with faculty, assists with post- award transactions, and provides administrative support for the department.  Michele is currently enrolled in the UMBC Heath Administration and Policy Program.

Jesse Mashbaum, Business Specialist

Jesse officially retired from UMBC after serving for 7.5 years as Business Manager for the Mathematics and Statistics Department and 8.5 years as Business Manager in the CAHSS Office of the Dean. Jesse now works on a part-time schedule in MIPAR, primarily helping with grant and department budget reconciliations.