Our Team

Gretchen Peters

Founder & Executive Director, CINTOC

Gretchen’s expertise is in researching and mapping transnational organized crime networks, and pinpointing ways to defeat them. She has worked with U.S. Central Command and U.S. Special Operations Command as well as multiple conservation groups. Gretchen co-chaired an OECD Task Force on flighting wildlife crime, and authored the groundbreaking book, Seeds of Terror, about the Taliban’s role in the Afghan heroin trade.

Gretchen appeared on The Daily Show and in other leading media outlets to discuss the heroin trade. She delivered presentations and training programs about wildlife trafficking, transnational organized crime and the global drug trade to U.S. and multinational entities including: the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime, the U.S. Defense Department, the U.S. State Department, the U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Homeland Security, and she has provided training to the Navy Seals, U.S. federal agents and thousands of U.S. and NATO troops deploying to Afghanistan.

Kathleen Miles

Director of Analysis,CINTOC

Kathleen is a leading authority on transnational organized crime networks in sub-Saharan Africa. She has developed and provided on-the-job training to analysts across the continent, instructing them in complex link and network analysis. Previously, Kathleen consulted to the U.S. intelligence, law enforcement, and military communities. Her work focused on illicit networks, money laundering and financial analytics.

She supported counter threat finance missions in Afghanistan and Pakistan and gathered and analyzed financial data about crime and terror networks in the Levant, Africa, and Central Asia. Kathleen authored comprehensive reports utilizing a variety of research tools to include raw and incomplete data sources, and produced financial reporting from raw financial data and document exploitation.

Katie A. Paul

Anthropologist & Research Analyst

Katie is an anthropologist and research analyst and an affiliated researcher with The Day After Heritage Protection Initiative (TDA-HPI). Her work focuses on the trafficking and destruction of cultural property and its connections to transnational crime and terrorism in the Middle East and North Africa. Katie focuses on the role of social media and new technologies in monitoring and recording trafficking in nations in crisis. Katie believes it’s not enough that only archaeologists work to protect heritage; rather, the world needs ArchaeoActivists: People working across fields and disciplines to combat the trafficking of antiquities by organized criminal networks.

Previously, Katie served as chief of staff and a research fellow at a Washington, DC-based non-profit dedicated to combating cultural racketeering. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Miami University (OH) with a double major in Anthropology and Ancient Greek and earned an M.A. in Anthropology at The George Washington University.

Amr Al Azm

Founder & Board Member, The Day After Project

Amr was educated in the UK, reading Archaeology of Western Asiatics at University College, London (UCL), and graduating with a doctoral degree in 1991. He was the founder and Director of the Scientific and Conservation Laboratories at the General Department of Antiquities and Museums (1999-2004) and taught at the University of Damascus until 2006. From 2006-2009 he was a visiting Professor at Brigham Young University. Currently he is a Professor of Middle East History and Anthropology at Shawnee State University in Ohio.

Amr is a keen follower and commentator on current events in Syria and the Middle East in general and has written articles in numerous journals, and major media outlets including guest editorials for the New York Times, Time Magazine and Foreign Policy. Amr is a founder and board member on The Day After (TDA) project and currently coordinates the Heritage Protection Initiative (HPI) for cultural heritage protection at the TDA. He is also a senior advisor the ASOR Cultural Heritage Initiatives team.

Shawn Graham

Associate Professor & Expert Researcher

Shawn is an assistant professor in the Department of History at Carleton University. He teaches classes on digital history and its methodologies, and ancient history. He received his PhD in Archaeology from the School of Human and Environmental Sciences at the University of Reading in 2002. In the intervening years, he worked professionally as a heritage consultant, a teacher, and entrepreneur. Shawn won the 2019 Archaeological Institute of America Award for Outstanding Work in Digital Archaeology.

Damien Huffer

Osteoarchaeologist & Expert in the Antiquities Trade

Damien is a postdoctoral fellow (2017 – 2019) within the Osteoarchaeological Research Laboratory, Department of Archaeology & Classical Studies, Stockholm University. From 2014 – 2016, he was awarded the Stable Isotope Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Smithsonian’s Museum Conservation Institute/Division of Anthropology.

Damien has been actively involved since 2011 in collaborative research concerning the global and Southeast Asian antiquities trade, and most recently, human remains trafficking. This research forms the core of his current work, and he is passionate about helping to raise public awareness of the existence and complexities of this ongoing threat to humanity’s shared heritage.

Sean Williamson

Executive Director, ATLAS Humanitarian Rescue

Sean Williamson is a classically trained economist from New York University’s Stern School of Business who happens to also be a Green Beret with multiple deployments to South East Asia and Afghanistan.

Leveraging his experience as a Special Forces Weapons Sergeant, Sniper, and an instructor of firearms and tactics, Sean Williamson founded ATLAS Humanitarian Rescue, a 501c3 that sends hand-picked Special Ops Veterans to those around the world who are most in need; particularly victims of human trafficking.

He provides training, consulting, and emergency support to governments, persons, and organizations. Sean’s teams have conducted stand-alone and partner operations all the way from hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico to the sweltering heat of Phnom Penh, the remote Appalachian Mountains to bustling Las Vegas, and everything in between.

His dedication in life is to create a worldwide effort of such highly trained anti-trafficking forces that potential human traffickers will be so afraid of who will come for them in the middle of the night, that they will not even consider enslaving another human for profit.

Tim K. Mackey

Director, Global Health Policy Institute

Tim Ken Mackey is the Director of the Global Health Policy Institute, an Associate Professor of Anesthesiology and Global Public Health at UC San Diego School of Medicine, the Director of Healthcare Research and Policy at UC San Diego – Extension, and is the Director for Healthcare Research and Policy at UC San Diego – Extension. He holds a BA in Political Science-International Relations, a Masters Degree in Health Policy & Law and also earned his PhD in Global Public Health from the joint doctoral program at UC San Diego – San Diego State University.

Prof. Mackey’s work has been featured in high-impact journals such as Science, JAMA, Nature Biotechnology, the Lancet, Nature Reviews Clinical Oncology, Clinical Microbiology Reviews, and BMC Medicine. His research and expertise has also been featured in major news outlets such as CNN, NPR, and POLITICO Pro.

His work focuses on an array of multidisciplinary topics in domestic and global public health. He also has extensive professional experience including over 10 years experience in the private sector and acting as a consultant for the World Health Organization, the US Department of State and others.

Dr. Samuel Hardy

Post-Doctoral Research Fellow in Cultural Heritage and Conflicts, Norwegian Institute in Rome, University of Oslo

Cultural property criminologist, specialising in the illicit trade in antiquities, the destruction of cultural property, and the politics and ethics of cultural heritage work in conflict zones and divided societies. Experienced in research in challenging environments – Turkey, Cyprus, Greece, Jordan and Kosovo. Developing expertise in trafficking, political violence and propaganda in the Middle East and North Africa and in Eastern Europe.


Independent Wildlife Trade Investigator

Dan studied anthropology and archaeology at the University of California, Berkeley, and at the University of Aix-Marseille in France, obtaining his Ph.D. in 1981, and has lectured at UC Berkeley, University of Nairobi, University of Paris X and Oxford University, focusing on past and present human ecology and evolution.

Leaving Academia in 1983, Dan worked in land and natural resource management at UNEP, UNDP, UNICEF and the UN Research Institute for Social Development up to 1997, shifting into contemporary wildlife trade research in 1999, beginning with ivory and branching out to rhino horn, pangolin scales, big cat products and live great apes. These investigations led him to the Internet and social media platforms, where Dan has uncovered hundreds of accounts dealing in all manner of illegal wildlife.

In wildlife trade, Dan has been funded by Save the Elephants, Care for the Wild, Aspinall Foundation, TRAFFIC, IUCN, CITES-MIKE, UNEP/GRID, Arcus Foundation, Natural Resources Defense Council, Vulcan Inc., Wildlife Conservation Society, the Open Society and UN Office of Drugs and Crime. Dan has over 170 publications.

Fiona Macleod

Investigative Environmental Journalist, Founder of Oxpeckers

Fiona MacLeod is a seasoned investigative environmental journalist who is pioneering the use of new media tools to expose eco-offences in Southern Africa, and to track offenders around the world.

Macleod won the prestigious SAB EnviroMedia Written Media Award in 2018 for collaborative multimedia journalism projects, and the Print and Online Award in October 2014 for the Oxpeckers Fellowship project. Under her leadership, Oxpeckers was 2019 Merit Award winner in the Asian Environmental Journalism Awards, 2017 SAB Environmental Journalist of the Year, CNN Multichoice African Environment Journalist of the Year in 2016, and 2016 Journalist of the Year at the China Environmental Press Awards.

Prior to founding Oxpeckers, Macleod worked as an award-winning journalist and editor at a range of the region’s top media. She served as environment editor at the Mail & Guardian newspaper for 10 years, and was awarded the coveted Nick Steele Award recognising her contributions to environmental conservation through her pioneering reportage.


Illegal Wildlife Trade Expert, Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF)

Patricia began tackling the issue of illegal cheetah trafficking in November of 2005, when she was working as the Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF)’s assistant director for strategic communications. At the time, little was known about the magnitude of this illegal trade. It was then that, together with CCF’s executive director, Dr Laurie Marker, Patricia organised a group of stakeholders, including the Ethiopian Wildlife Conservation Authority and the United States Embassy for the confiscation of two cheetah cubs held illegally at a restaurant in a remote area of Ethiopia. The confiscation took place with the support of military personnel, which attracted unexpected media attention and numerous reports of illegal cheetah trade or ownership throughout the Horn of Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. It was then that she began collecting data on illegal cheetah trafficking, which she later expanded with her research into cyber-commerce in collaboration with PEGAS (Project to End Great Apes Slavery). This research, which covers numbers, routes, and drivers for demand and supply, has served to bring attention to the much-ignored issue of live animal trade, and was key to support the inclusion of illegal cheetah trade in the CITES (Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species) 16th Conference of the Parties. Since then, Patricia continues to represent CCF before CITES as well as other international organizations including INTERPOL.


Our Partners

Our Supporters

The Bay & Paul Foundations


The Bay and Paul Foundations support organizations that prepare agents of change working to strengthen our social compact and develop authentic solutions to the problems of this pivotal century.

EJF Philanthropies

EJF Philanthropies focuses on supporting conversations that generate new ideas, fostering collaborations among grantees, and building connections among people across networks. Fighting the Illegal Wildlife Trade is one of their areas of grant-making focus.


Contact Us


Do you have a question or want to send us information? Drop us a line!

Keep updated on the latest by joining our mailing list