MEET OUR TEAM

Our lab is made up of three separate teams which approach our mission of disinformation research, bot tracking, analysis reports, and public outreach.

FOUNDERS AND DIRECTORS

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THOMAS PLANT

FOUNDER

Tom Plant is received his B.A. in International Relations and Hispanic Studies from the College of William & Mary ’22. His research interests include the role of mis- and disinformation within the rally ‘round the flag effect and emerging technological threats to international security. Tom also serves as a Research Fellow for the Project on International Peace and Security (PIPS) and as an Editorial Assistant for the Department of Hispanic Studies.

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AARAJ VIJ

CO-DIRECTOR

Aaraj Vij is pursuing a B.A. in International Relations and B.S. in Computer Science from the College of William & Mary '23. Drawing on his education, he researches both policy and technical solutions to detect and counteract disinformation campaigns before they proliferate. Aaraj also serves as the Technical Director for the W&M Social Science Research Methods Center.

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MEGAN HOGAN

FOUNDER

Meg founded DisinfoLab during the summer of 2020 following her fellowship with the Project on International Peace and Security, where she published an award-winning white paper on deepfakes as a disinformation tactic. She graduated from the College of William & Mary in YEAR, with a B.A. in International Relations and Economics. In addition to foreign disinformation campaigns, Meg’s research interests include the intersection of technology and policy, post-Soviet politics, and East African stability.

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ALYSSA NEKRITZ

MANAGING EDITOR

Alyssa is Managing Editor and Disinformation Analyst for DisinfoLab. She is a junior pursuing a B.A. in International Relations with a minor in Data Science from the College of William & Mary. Her interests include polling data analysis and tracking foreign media influence in Eastern Europe. Alyssa also works for the National Center for State Courts. She loves DisinfoLab and hopes you do too!

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JEREMY SWACK

CO-DIRECTOR

Jeremy Swack is currently pursuing a B.S. in both Computer Science and Data Science from the College of William and Mary ‘24. Using his background in machine learning and data visualization, he researches data driven methods to analyze and predict the spread of disinformation. His other research interests include deep learning applications, natural language processing, and artificial intelligence. 

 

2021-2022 TEAM MEMBERS

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SOPHIA CHEN

Communications Team

Sophia is a member of the communications team at DisinfoLab and is currently pursuing a B.S. in Computational and Applied Mathematics and Statistics at the College of William and Mary. Her interests include creating social media content that utilizes Canva and other forms of graphic design. Other than this, she is a secretary for Zodiacs, an audition free dance team at W&M.

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SARAH DEVENDORF

Disinformation Analyst

Sarah Devendorf is a Disinformation Analyst for DisinfoLab and is pursuing a B.A. in Government and History at the College of William & Mary. She is graduating with the class of 2025. Her primary area of interest is studying the impact of disinformation on political party polarization. She is also interested in researching how demographics such as race, class, gender, and religion impact ideological preference.

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SHRADHA DINESH

Disinformation Analyst

Shradha Dinesh is a Disinformation Analyst for Disinfo Lab and is pursuing a B.A. in sociology from the College of William & Mary. Her research interests include political radicalization and methods of addressing disinformation in news media. Outside of Disinfo Lab, she is also involved with student publications.

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ARIANA HE

Communications Team

Ariana He is currently pursuing her B.A. in economics and government from the College of William and Mary 25’. She is interested in international economic development, immigration policy, and transitional human rights. Outside the DisInfo lab, she is also an active member of the travel MUN team of International Relations Club. Her interests also include guitar, photography, and mock trial.

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CHEYENNE HWANG

Communications Team

Cheyenne is on the communications team at DisinfoLab and is pursuing a B.S. in computer science and a B.A. in sociology at the College of William & Mary. Her interests include UX/UI design, machine learning, and criminology. She is also a member of W&M dance team, a member of the Chinese Student Organization, and a research assistant for AidData.

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BRENNEN MICHEAL

Disinformation Analyst

Brennen Micheal is a sophomore currently pursuing a B.A. in Government with a minor in Psychology. His research interests include the role of disinformation in international security and development. Brennen also serves as an intern for the Project on International Peace and Security (PIPS) and is involved with Moot Court and Innocence Club.

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CONRAD NING

Technical Disinformation Analyst

Conrad Ning is currently pursuing a B.S. in Data Science from the College of William and Mary '22. His interests include the study of machine learning and 5G technology. He is also a member of Taiwanese American Student Association and Club Volleyball. He is one of the Technical Analysts in DisInfo Lab.

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PRITIKA RAVI

Disinformation Analyst

Pritika Ravi is currently pursuing her B.A. in Government from the College of William and Mary. Her academic interests include feminist political theory, Indian politics, and racial liberation and she is involved with the sexual assault prevention organization Someone You Know (SYK) and with the Digital Inclusion in Governance (DIG) Lab.

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SAYYED RAZMJO

Technical Disinformation Analyst

Sayyed is a rising senior pursuing a double major in Government and Computer Science at the College of William and Mary. He has worked with many start-ups and research organizations during the past few years and loves to discover the connections between technologies and politics.

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CHAS RINNE

Technical Disinformation Analyst

Chas Rinne is currently pursuing a B.S. in Computer Science with a minor in Music from the College of William & Mary 23’. His interests include the study of algorithms and machine learning, as well as singing with the W&M Cleftomaniacs. He is a member of the Technical Analyst team in DisinfoLab.

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SKYLER SEETS

Technical Disinformation Analyst

Skyler is a current sophomore at the College of William & Mary majoring in Data Science and Public Policy. Outside of DisinfoLab, Skyler is a member of the Student Organization for Medical Outreach and Sustainability (SOMOS), Vox, and on the Pep Band executive board. She is interested in using quantitative and qualitative skills to study human behavior, with a specific interest in how media, religion, and linguistics affect political decision making.

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MADELINE SMITH

Disinformation Analyst

Madeline is a Disinformation Analyst for DisinfoLab. She is a senior at William & Mary pursuing a B.A. in Government and minoring in Biology. She is interested in examining disinformation pertaining to climate change and combating widespread climate denial in the United States.

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SAMANTHA STRAUSS

Disinformation Analyst

Samantha is currently pursuing her B.A. in Government and History from the College of William and Mary ‘23. Her interests include racial justice and American polarization. She is also a member of Young Democrats and serves as a James Blair Historical Review Peer Editor.

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SELENE SWANSON

Disinformation Analyst

Selene is a Disinformation Analyst for DisinfoLab. She is a senior at William & Mary majoring in Government and minoring in Management and Organizational Leadership. Her research interests include political polarization and electoral reform.

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MARY WATERMAN

Disinformation Analyst

Mary Waterman is a Disinformation Analyst for DisinfoLab. She is currently a sophomore at the College of William and Mary pursuing her B.A. in Government. Her academic interests include the weaponization of disinformation and the  psychological processes of radicalization. She is also involved in the club rowing team, 7g Sketch Comedy, Intervarsity and the Birding Club.

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SARAH WOZNIAK

Disinformation Analyst

Sarah is a Disinformation Analyst for DisinfoLab and is pursuing a B.A. in International Relations and Economics at the College of William & Mary. Her interests include international trade and development. She is also a Research Assistant for AidData, an Associate Editor for The Monitor. 

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YILE XU

Technical Disinformation Analyst

Yile Xu is a technical Analyst for DisinfoLab. She is a sophomore at the College of William & Mary pursuing B.S. in Computer Science and Data Science on the data application track. Her research interest is using data mining techniques to analyze critical issues in current society.

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SEAN ZHOU

Technical Disinformation Analyst

Sean is a senior at the college who joined the Technology Team in the Disinformation Lab in Spring 2022. He is currently pursuing a B.S. in Applied Statistics at the College of William & Mary. He is passionate about the spread of disinfo between China and the U.S.

 

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