Meet the Faculty

Jose Sierra

Associate Teaching Professor, Associate Director - Cybersecurity and Information Assurance Graduate Program


PhD in Computer Science, Carlos III University of Madrid – Spain
MSc in Computer Science, Málaga University – Spain
MSc in Business Administration, Rey Juan Carlos University – Spain
Applied Cyber Security, MIT Professional Education – Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Jose Sierra is an Associate Teaching Professor and Associate Director of Information Assurance and Cybersecurity Program at the College of Computer and Information Science. He earned his PhD at Carlos III University in 2000. Jose’s research areas include Authentication and Access control protocols, mobile payments protection, lightweight cryptographic protocols and IoT security. He has a very active publication record, with an important number of conference proceedings and journal papers. During his academic career, he has had the opportunity to research and work at several universities, such as the British Bradford and Westminster, to well-established US ones like UC Berkeley and MIT.

What are the specifics of your educational background?

My education has been focused on Computer Science: in this field I achieved my MSc degree in 1997, joining after that as a Research Assistant the Pontificia de Comillas University in Madrid. Parallel to that, I began my PhD on Internet Security Protocols at the Carlos III University, until 2000 when I obtained my doctoral thesis with honors.

In 2003, in order to complement my technical background, I took a MSc in Business Administration at the Rey Juan Carlos University, culminating it in 2005.

More recently, for personal interests, I was granted two professional certifications in Cyber Security: Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) and Certified Information Security Manager (CISM)

Research interests

Attribute-based access control
IoT communications protection
Technology innovations in Cyber Threats and Cyber Defenses

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Stephen Amato

Faculty Director of Graduate Regulatory Affairs and Life Sciences, Teaching Professor


Doctor of Philosophy from Boston College (1997)
Master of Business Administration from Boston College
Bachelor of Arts in Biochemical Sciences from Harvard College


Dr. Stephen F. Amato has over 25 years of experience in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device industries. Prior to his position as Faculty Director of Graduate Regulatory Affairs and Life Sciences at Northeastern University, Steve was the Founder and Managing Director of Life Sciences Advisors, LLC, and also a Managing Director for Cardinal Health Regulatory Sciences.  Additionally, as an Executive with GfK Health, Dr. Amato managed and worked on client global regulatory affairs and reimbursement projects in the areas of market access, pricing, and payer coverage, coding and payment strategy.  Prior to GfK Health, as an Executive Director at Anika Therapeutics, Steve managed all aspects of the company's product portfolio including regulatory, reimbursement, market segmentation, targeting, positioning, pricing and promotional strategies.  From 2000 to 2007, he was the Group Director of Knee Repair at Smith & Nephew Endoscopy where he managed a $140M orthopedic product portfolio. Earlier in his career, Steve worked for Visible Genetics, where he was responsible for developing and launching genomic molecular diagnostics products used for subtyping Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) and other infectious disease agents.  \He has also worked with Critical Therapeutics on the development and commercialization of treatments for gram-negative sepsis.

Steve holds an AB in Biochemical Sciences from Harvard University, a Ph.D. in Molecular and Cellular Biology from Boston College’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and an MBA from the Carroll School of Graduate Management at Boston College.  He has also received the U.S. and EU Regulatory Affairs Certification designations and is a Consultant for the Regulatory Affairs Professional Society.

Professional Experience:

Established global regulatory affairs/market access/HEOR professional whose mission is to lead the development of an efficient and globally competitive U.S. healthcare system based on 20+ years’ of life sciences industry and public service experience; Have consistently demonstrated expert-level proficiency in leading teams in diverse global markets to solve complex regulatory affairs/market access/reimbursement/coding/pricing associated challenges in the medical device/specialty pharmaceutical/combination product/companion dx/rare diseases space; Teams managed have consistent success in direct FDA/CMS/Medicaid/private payer/global regulatory body/payer interactions and negotiations, in securing state Medicaid coverage and in leveraging Type A/B/C FDA meetings; Life sciences industry experience includes leading productive team interactions with EU notified bodies, EMA, and direct collaboration with the Brazilian ANVISA, Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW) and Chinese FDA, as well as geographically specific payer assessment bodies (NICE, G-BA, IQWiG, HAS, CEPS) resulting in maximal penetration of healthcare products and services into Ex-US markets; am skilled in building alliances with diverse healthcare market stakeholders, including NGO’s, VC's and angel investors to raise capital, and in leading the evaluation, development & execution of global biomedical product regulatory and market access strategies; Healthcare product and associated services launches I have managed or supported in orthopedics/rare diseases/biologics/women’s health/oncology/infectious disease/molecular dx/biomarker spaces have generated over $7.75B in global revenue in inpatient/outpatient/home healthcare environments.

Member of RAPS, ISPOR, UPCEA, ACHE, DIA, MassMedic, MassBio, Boston Chamber of Commerce, Airplane Owners & Pilots Association (AOPA)

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Chris Bolick

Assistant Academic Specialist - College of Professional Studies

Christopher Bolick is an Assistant Teaching Professor in the Master of Science in Project Management program. He has extensive experience in project management and business process improvement, and has previously worked with a Fortune 40 company in engineering and construction, real estate operations, strategic sourcing, facilities maintenance, and design and continuous improvement. He brings his extensive expertise in managing strategic initiatives and cross-functional teams to Northeastern where, since 2013, he has served as a graduate faculty member and academic consultant.

Mr. Bolick is the master teacher for the “Experiential Learning Projects for Professionals,” Communication Skills for Project Managers,” and “Project Scheduling and Cost Planning” courses, while overseeing the implementation of the Project Management Competency-Based Experiential Learning program. He has taught a range of courses at the graduate level, including "Project Foundations" and "Project Capstone," in addition to those listed previously. He has presented at the Project Management Institute's (PMI) 2018 Technology and Talent Symposium and has a chapter forthcoming in a new textbook on project management in his areas of research including the intersection of artificial intelligence, data analytics, and digital transformation as its related to project management practices.

He holds a Master of Project Management from Western Carolina University, and the following certifications; Project Management Professional PMP ©, Business Process Management, and Lean Six Sigma. Mr. Bolick is pursuing an EdD in Organizational Leadership Studies at Northeastern.

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Guevara Noubir

Professor and Executive Director - Cybersecurity Programs

Guevara Noubir holds a PhD in Computer Science from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL) (1996). His research covers both theoretical and practical aspects of privacy, security, and robustness in networked systems. Prior to joining Northeastern University, he was a senior researcher at CSEM SA (1997-2000) where he led the design and development of the data protocol-stack of the third generation Universal Mobile Telecommunication System (UMTS) and its world first 3G prototype. His research led to a wide range of mechanisms and algorithms for scalable, secure, private, and robust wireless and mobile communications. He led the winning team of the 2013 DARPA Spectrum Cooperative Challenge against 90 academic and industry teams. He is a recipient of the National Science Foundation CAREER Award (2005), the ACM Conference on Security and Privacy in Wireless and Mobile Networks (WiSec) best paper award in 2011 and runner-up best paper in 2013. His research was featured in the NSF CISE/CNS Highlights in 2009 and 2012. Professor Noubir has held visiting research positions at Eurecom, MIT, and UNL.

Professor Noubir has served as program co-chair of many conferences in his areas of expertise, including the ACM Conference on Security and Privacy in Wireless and Mobile Networks, IEEE Conference on Communications and Network Security, and IEEE WoWMoM. He also co-chaired two NSF Workshops on bio-computation and communications. He serves on the editorial board of the IEEE Transaction on Mobile Computing, the Elsevier Journal on Computer Networks, and the ACM Transactions on Information and System Security.

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Connie Emerson

Assistant Teaching Professor - College of Professional Studies

Constance Emerson is an Assistant Academic Specialist in the Master of Science in Project Management program and the Master of Science in Program and Project Portfolio Management. Her research interests are program and project portfolio management, project office implementation, and the recovery of troubled projects. Ms. Emerson is a certified Project Management Professional and a member of the Project Management Institute. She is currently pursuing her EdD in Organizational Leadership at Northeastern and is currently writing her thesis on Portfolio Management in Higher Education.

Ms. Emerson has more than 40 years of experience in managing projects, including her role as Principal at ProjectMAPS, a consultancy focused on enabling organizations to optimize their delivery of projects. She has worked with companies from the insurance, healthcare, retail, publishing, construction, technology, semi-conductor and engineering fields, including Liberty Mutual, Nationwide, Allegro Systems, Measured Progress and L.L. Bean. Ms. Emerson also worked over a span of 20 years to build and teach the project management curriculum at Educational Services International in Arlington, VA.

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Themis A. Papageorge

Associate Clinical Professor and Director - Cybersecurity and Information Assurance Employer Relations

Professor Themis Papageorge became the director of Cybersecurity and Information Assurance Employer Relations in 2017. Professor Papageorge is responsible for developing co-op opportunities for program students, managing employer outreach on student performance and expectations, submitting grant proposals and developing collaborative IA/Cybersecurity programs with industrial partners, and teaching IA and Cyber Security courses. From 2009-2017 Professor Papageorge served for 8 years as the director of the Master of Science in Information Assurance and Cyber Security Program responsible for overseeing the program curriculum and introducing the online version worldwide. The MS in Information Assurance and Cyber Security program, now offered both on-campus and online at Northeastern University, is available to an increased number of domestic and international students. He teaches the foundations of information assurance and the security risk management and assessment courses. Professor Papageorge’s twenty-five years of corporate experience in technology, planning and process, and system redesign included a decade of executive management positions with information assurance and cybersecurity companies. He was vice president of services at Guardium, a leader in real-time database security, auditing, and monitoring. Prior to that, he was vice president of services at Courion, a leader in identity access management, authentication, and security. Professor Papageorge has also held management positions at Digital Equipment Corporation. He received his PhD in risk management and engineering economics from the MIT Sloan School of Management, an MS in naval architecture and marine engineering from MIT, and a BS in naval architecture and marine engineering from National Technical University of Athens, Greece.

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Thomas M. Koperniak

Lecturer, Master of Science in Regulatory Affairs

Thomas M. Koperniak, PhD, RAC, is an Associate Director of Regulatory Affairs at Concert Pharmaceuticals, with over 10 years of pharmaceutical industry experience spanning early and late stage development across multiple therapeutic areas. He has led preparation of a broad portfolio of global regulatory submissions and designed effective regulatory strategies taking current and emerging global regulatory requirements into account. In addition to his experience supporting start-up and execution of global clinical trials through establishment and maintenance of INDs and CTAs, he has leveraged his knowledge of clinical, manufacturing, labeling, and advertising regulation to deliver new product filings and lifecycle registrations to health authorities in the United States, Canada, and European Union.

Before joining Concert Pharmaceuticals, Tom was a Global Regulatory Lead at GE Healthcare, where he supported clinical development and lifecycle management for investigational and marketed pharmaceutical diagnostics. Prior to joining GE Healthcare, he worked at FORUM Pharmaceuticals for 6 years in various Research and Regulatory Affairs roles to advance the development of compounds under investigation for treating CNS diseases.

Tom is an Assistant Teaching Professor in the Master of Science in Regulatory Affairs program, where he has developed and instructed courses in pharmaceutical regulation, regulatory writing, and product manufacturing for 7 years. He is the Founder of the ALERT Program (Advancing Lifelong Excellence in Regulatory Trades- an educational platform offering lectures on key issues facing healthcare and other regulated industries, as well as career development support services) and created the ATTRACT Initiative (Advocating for Transitions To a Regulatory Affairs Career Track- an outreach project raising awareness of the Regulatory Affairs profession primarily among undergraduate students). In 2018 he received the Excellence in Teaching Award from the Northeastern University College of Professional Studies.

In addition to his experience teaching at Northeastern University, Tom has developed and instructed online courses in drug development, pharmaceutical regulation, and regulatory strategy for the University of California San Diego and George Washington University.

Tom completed his undergraduate studies in Chemistry at Williams College, and received a Doctorate in Pharmacology from Northeastern University. He has maintained RAC certification since 2011.

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Dr. Carlos Mex Perera

Lecturer, Master of Science in Cybersecurity

Dr. Carlos Mex Perera has over 18 years of experience in the field of Computer and Communications Security. He holds a B.Sc. degree in Electronics and Communications Engineering and an M.Sc. Degree in Telecommunications. He obtained a Ph.D. degree in Cryptography from the University of Bradford, United Kingdom (2002). He was an assistant professor with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Tech of Monterrey, and an associate professor with ITAM (Mexico City).

Besides, he has worked in the industry, leading a software/hardware team for developing IoT solutions. He has designed hardware, firmware and software components for industrial products. His experience covers the development and implementation of routing protocols, medium access control protocols and cryptographic mechanisms for embedded systems.

His research interests encompass computer and communications security, cryptography, self-configuration, self-healing networks, and IoT. He has published several papers related to cryptography, side-channel attacks, computer post-mortem analysis, wireless network resilience, and all-optical network security.
Currently, he is a Lecturer in the Information Assurance and Cybersecurity program.

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Adel Zadeh

Associate Teaching Professor, Master of Science in Project Management

Adel is an Associate Teaching Professor in the Master of Science in Project Management program at Northeastern University and is the director of academia with the PMI Toronto chapter. He is a Professional Program/Project Manager with over 10 years of industrial and academic experience managing and consulting many complex public/private projects including planning, estimating, engineering, procurement, and implementation.

As a professor and program director, he has developed, taught, and run a number of PM programs in GTA. Adel's professional work, research interest, and teaching focus on organizational transformation change leadership, AI in Project Management, disciplined agile as well as sustainability initiatives in green building construction, and how sustainability trends impact the building and construction industry.

Adel holds a Ph.D. in Engineering from Cambridge University, U.K, is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP), and accredited LEED BD+C (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design - Building Design and Construction).

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