Dr. Anne B. Cross is a professor in the School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice at Metropolitan State University. She has served as supervisor of the Criminal Justice Practicum program, which places students in internships at state, federal, and local agencies. She is the developer and editor of several social media projects including Justice Reads, a virtual book club for criminal justice students and professionals. She has served as an advisory board member for the gender and women's studies programs at Metro State and developed the foundational course for the gender studies major, GNDR--201. Prior to coming to Metropolitan State University, Cross directed the Women’s Studies program at the University of Wisconsin--Stout.
Professor Cross’s research has been published in Qualitative Sociology, Social Policy and Administration and the International Journal of Pluralism and Economics Education. Since 2012, she has focused on applied research directed at social change. She has served as a research consultant and board member for the Center for Homicide Research and WATCH, a Minnesota court monitoring organization. Her most recent project, conducted with Dr. Eckberg, brings West African immigrants in Hennepin County into the courts as community observers and peer educators and also assists them in providing the court system with feedback. Professor Cross has taught previously at Yale University, the University of Connecticut, the University of St. Thomas, and the University of Wisconsin-¬‐Stout. She graduated summa cum laude from the University of Minnesota and earned an M.A. and Ph.D. from Yale University.
Dr. James Densley is Assistant Professor in the School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice at Metropolitan State University. He earned his D.Phil. and M.Sc. in Sociology from the University of Oxford (St. Antony’s College), M.S. in Teaching from Pace University, and B.A. in Sociology with American Studies from the University of Northampton. Densley teaches Applied Criminology, Capstone, and Gangs in the undergraduate program, and Causation and Prevention of Crime in the graduate program. His research interests include street gangs, criminal networks, violence, and theoretical criminology.
According to the British Journal of Criminology, Densley’s first book, How Gangs Work: An Ethnography of Youth Violence (Palgrave Macmillan, 2013), based on “critical ethnography and first-class fieldwork”, “points the way to how gang research should be done in the future.” For this work, Densley received the National Gang Crime Research Center’s highest award for “Superior Accomplishments in Gang Research.” Densley’s recent publications appear in Crime & Delinquency, Criminology & Criminal Justice, European Journal of Criminology, Global Crime, Group Processes & Intergroup Relations,Homicide Studies, Journal of Criminal Justice Education, and Social Problems. He is also ad hoc contributor to MinnPost, a local nonprofit news organization.
Dr. Deborah Eckberg is an Associate Professor at Metropolitan State University, School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice and is the current Director of the Master of Science in Criminal Justice program. Her teaching interests include research methods, victimology, and the criminal court system. Prior to becoming a full-time faculty member, Dr. Eckberg worked as the Principal Research Associate for the Fourth Judicial District (Hennepin County, MN) court. While her work background and expertise focus on the court system, Dr. Eckberg is interested in all aspects of the criminal justice system.
Dr. Eckberg's research interests cover a wide range of topics related to the court system (e.g., multiple DWI court, prosecutorial discretion in charging juvenile offenders, courtroom monitoring), as well as issues related to the intersection of culture and mental illness among criminal offenders. She contributed to the development of an online curriculum on mental health issues for Minnesota jails and law enforcement. She earned her B.A. degree from Dartmouth College, and earned both her M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Minnesota.
Dr. Susan Hilal is an Associate Professor in the School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice. During the 2012-2013 school year, she was on a sabbatical leave where she taught and did research at the University of Macau (Macau, China). She teaches primarily the senior capstone project and criminological theory. Her areas of research interest include police education, juvenile justice issues, and volunteerism.
She has published a variety of articles in both trade and peer-reviewed journals, most recently in the Journal of Criminal Justice Education, Homicide Studies, and FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin. While at Metropolitan State University she has also served as coordinator of the Master of Science in Criminal Justice Program and Law Enforcement Certificate Program. Prior to working at Metropolitan State University she was an Assistant Professor and coordinator of the Criminal Justice Bachelor of Science Degree Completion Program at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville. She earned her Ph.D. in Sociology from South Dakota State University, a M.S. in Criminal Justice from St. Cloud State University, and a B.A. in Criminal Justice from the University of St. Thomas.
Dr. Jillian Peterson is Assistant Professor in the School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice at Metropolitan State University. She teaches Applied Criminology, Capstone, and Literature in Criminal Justice. Her research interests include offenders with mental illness, school shootings, crime prevention, prison reentry programming, and the death penalty. Peterson’s research has appeared in numerous peer-reviewed journals such as Law and Human Behavior, Psychiatric Services, and Psychological Assessment. She regularly provides training in the area of forensic psychology to practitioners in the criminal justice field in the Twin Cities.
Peterson completed a Master’s Degree and Ph.D. in Psychology and Social Behavior at the University of California, Irvine, where she specialized in psychology and law. She also has a B.A. in Sociology from Grinnell College. Prior to working at Metropolitan State University, Peterson worked as an investigator in death penalty cases in New York City and Chicago, a research coordinator at the University of Minnesota, and a trial consultant. She taught previously at Normandale Community College, St. Catherine University, and Macalaster College.
Dr. Nadarajan (Raj) Sethuraju is Assistant Professor in the School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice at Metropolitan State University. He teaches Research Methods, Diversity Matters in Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice, Victimology, Citizenship and Comparative Criminal Justice to undergraduates, and Community Engagement and Civic Leadership in the graduate program.
Raj’s research interests include race relations, drug courts, restorative justice, and diversion programs. His most recent article is called “The Consequences of Teaching Critical Sociology on Course Evaluations: Multiple Perspectives on the Nature of Black and Latino/a Intergroup Relations and Speaking Truth to Power” (published in The Spirit of Service: Exploring Faith, Service, and Social Justice in Higher Education). He has also appeared on a local radio show on KMOJ. He earned his Ph.D. in Sociology at Texas Woman’s University and both his M.A. in Counseling and B.A. in Sociology at the University of Monroe, LA.
Dr. Jennifer Wingren is an Associate Professor in the School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice at Metropolitan State University. Her main teaching interests include writing and research methodology, corrections, and women and crime. Her research interests include domestic violence, fear of crime, and citizenship/volunteerism.
Dr. Wingren received her B.A. in Sociology from Bemidji State University. She received both her M.A. and Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Prior to working at Metropolitan State University she was an Assistant Professor at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater in Sociology/Criminal Justice.