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Maxwell School Professor Christina Merchant Dies
Christina Sickles Merchant, a professor of practice in the Department of Public Administration and International Affairs in the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, passed away on Aug. 5. Since 2007, Merchant taught a wide variety of classes on conflict resolution, labor relations and human resource management, while also serving as a faculty associate in the Program for the Advancement of Research on Conflict and Collaboration.
In addition to teaching and providing clinical opportunities for her graduate-level students, Merchant also consulted with a broad base of labor and management clients and served as a per diem mediator of labor disputes in Central New York for the New York State Public Employment Relations Board.
Before joining the Maxwell School, Merchant had a significant career as an expert on labor-management issues: as a consultant; as director of labor-management cooperation at the Federal Labor Relations Authority in Washington, D.C.; and as commissioner of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service in Philadelphia. She also co-authored the award-winning book “Designing Conflict Management Systems: A Guide to Creating Productive and Healthy Organizations” (Jossey-Bass, 1995) and was active in a number of professional organizations.
Merchant earned a B.S. in industrial labor relations at Cornell University and an M.S. in human resource management and organization development from the American University.
A memorial service to honor and remember Merchant’s life will be held this fall.