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Leadership Team

LA&PS Dean

J.J. McMurtry

I’m delighted to welcome our new and returning students to our extraordinary Faculty! In LA&PS, we deliver world-class programs and courses taught by the very best professors, and we enrich the student experience with life-changing international study opportunities and ground-breaking internships. There is so much to discover at York. Here, you can chart your own path forward.

About the Dean

Professor McMurtry is an associate professor in the Department of Social Science and a member of the Faculty’s Business & Society (BUSO) program. Professor McMurtry holds MA and PhD degrees in social and political thought from York University. His research and teaching interests focus on the theory and practice of alternative social, political and economic forms. His publications include 23 solo and co-authored articles and book chapters, and he is editor of the books Living Economics: Canadian Perspectives on the Social Economy, Co-operatives and Community Economic Development and Co-operatives in a Global Economy. In addition, he was English language editor of the Canadian Journal of Non-Profit and Social Economy Research. This spring, Professor McMurtry received the Merit Award of the Canadian Association for Studies in Co-operation (CASC). The award is presented to individuals who have demonstrated significant contributions to teaching and research on co-operatives, both in Canada and internationally.

Invite the Dean

Would you like the dean to attend an event you are hosting? Dean McMurtry loves to engage with all members of the LA&PS community. Let us know the details and he will confirm attendance if he is available.

Dean’s Circle of Student Scholars

The highest-achieving students in the Faculty of LA&PS are given the opportunity to become more engaged in the York community and develop leadership skills as part of the Dean’s Circle of Student Scholars. You’re automatically invited to the Dean’s Circle if you are a high school student who with an average of 90% or higher or a current student enrolled in 12 credits or more and maintaining at least an overall 8.0 GPA.

Read more about the Dean's Circle of Student Scholars

Associate Deans

Maggie Quirt profile photo

Maggie Quirt
Associate Dean, Programs

Professor Quirt is a former chair of the LA&PS Academic Policy and Planning Committee (APPC), and the LA&PS Committee on Curriculum, Curricular Policy, and Standards (CCPS), and is a member of the Indigenous Council Curriculum Development Subcommittee. She also served as Undergraduate Program Director in the Department of Equity Studies from 2020-21. In addition to her service to the University, she was a member of the Mayor's Advisory Committee on Race Relations for the City of Markham from 2010-2016, and currently serves on the Harmony and Peacebuilding Advisory Group, a committee of York Region residents. Her research explores political apologies, commemoration, and reparations in settler state Canada.

Lily Cho
Associate Dean, Global & Community Engagement

Lily Cho brings to her portfolio a commitment to finding ways to connect LA&PS with communities locally and globally. As a first-generation scholar with a research and teaching interest in diaspora and culture, she understands the power of culture to bring together communities across a range of different experiences and histories. She is also an associate professor in the Department of English where teaches courses on the short story, Canadian literature, and postcolonial theory. Her research has led to books on Chinese restaurants and the relationship between human rights and creative expression. Her new book, Mass Capture: Chinese Head Tax and the Making of Non-Citizens, examines the connections between race, surveillance, and citizenship. It is also McGill-Queen’s University Press’ first Open Access volume. As associate dean, she supports students, faculty, and community members on initiatives that benefit both the community and the university.

Anita Lam
Associate Dean, Teaching & Learning

Professor Lam is an associate professor of Criminology in the Department of Social Science. Her research lies at the intersection of crime, media, and culture. Over numerous book chapters and peer-reviewed scholarly articles, she has examined various representations of crime, including courtroom sketches, graphic novels, gangster films and Canadian crime television. She is the author of Making Crime Television (2014), an ethnographic work that investigates the aforementioned subjects. Her recent research studies the ways in which crime scenes are entangled with scenes of climate change in the age of the Anthropocene.

profile photo of Michelle Johnson

Michele Johnson
Associate Dean, Students

Professor Johnson holds a BA. Hons, M.Phil. (U.W.I.), M.A and Ph.D. in History from Johns Hopkins University and has taught in the Department of History at York University since July 2002. Prior to teaching at York, Professor Johnson taught at the University of West Indies (Mona) from 1994 – 2002. She has served the York community in a variety of capacities, including as the coordinator of the Latin American and Caribbean Studies Programme, as York’s affirmative action officer, and as the director of the Harriet Tubman Institute for Research on Africa and its Diasporas (2013-2018). Her research interests and publications reflect Jamaican cultural history, and the histories of gender relations, race/racialization, labour, domestic slavery, and domestic service in Jamaica and Canada.

Ravi de Costa
Associate Dean, Research & Graduate Studies

Professor de Costa emigrated to Canada from Australia in 2002 to take up a Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Institute on Globalization and the Human Condition at McMaster University. Prior to joining York in 2007, he also taught at Trent University in the Department of Political Studies. He is an active member of the York community, as Chair of the President’s Sustainability Council, and acting director of Las Nubes Project. His work has focused on the institutional and cultural contexts of Indigenous-settler relations in Australia and Canada, with publications on treaty-making processes, and on truth and reconciliation. He has held three Social Science and Humanities Research Council Standard (SSHRC) grants to examine the work of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada.

David Mutimer
Associate Dean, Faculty Affairs

Professor Mutimer holds a BA. Hons, M.A and Ph.D. in Political Science, is a professor of International Politics, and was most recently Chair of the Department of Politics at York University. His research considers issues of contemporary international security through critical social theory, and investigates the reproduction of international politics in popular culture. Much of that work has focused on weapons proliferation as a reconfigured security concern in the post-Cold War era, and has tried to open possibilities for alternative means of thinking about the security problems related to arms more generally. More recently, he has turned his attention to the politics of militarization in Canadian society as a cause and consequence of the wars we have joined in the past twenty years.