Director of ADVANCE
Phone: (979) 845-4274
Dr. Cynthia Werner is the Director of ADVANCE. In this role, she plays a key role coordinating the activities and research, and setting the future direction of ADVANCE. She reports to the Dean of Faculties and works closely with the Office for Diversity, as well as faculty and administrators across Texas A&M's 16 colleges and schools and two branch campuses. Dr. Werner received her MA and PhD in Anthropology from Indiana University. She joined the faculty at Texas A&M as an assistant professor in 2001, and served as the head of the Department of Anthropology from 2011-2019. She has also been an active member of the Women's and Gender Studies Program at Texas A&M. Dr. Werner’s research is geographically based in the region of Central Asia, an area that includes the former “Muslim republics” of the Soviet Union. She has published research on a variety of topics, including rural household survival strategies, memories of nuclear testing in Kazakhstan, the repatriation of ethnic Kazakhs from Mongolia to Kazakhstan and the unusual marriage practice of bride kidnapping. Given that Soviet and post-Soviet efforts to manage ethnic relations and to change women's lives are themes that cut across all of these areas of inquiry, these research projects have provided her with a unique lens for understanding race, ethnicity, and gender in connection with the experiences of faculty from underrepresented groups on U.S. campuses. Dr. Werner is the recipient of fellowships and grants from the National Research Council, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the National Science Foundation and the National Council for Eurasian and East European Research. She is also the past president of the Central Eurasian Studies Society.