CINA Center of Excellence names Jim Jones as its new director

Jim Jones wears a dark shirt and stands in an IT database lab with wires and boxes.
Jim Jones, associate professor in the ECE department
Photo by Ron Aira/Creative Services/George Mason

Jim Jones has been named the new director of George Mason University’s  Criminal Investigations and Network Analysis (CINA) Center. 

Jones, an associate professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department within the Volgenau School of Engineering, succeeds CINA’s founding director Tony Stefanidis, who relocated to the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, earlier this year and remains affiliated with the center. As the new director of CINA, a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Center of Excellence, Jones will work with DHS stakeholders to develop CINA’s strategic vision, outreach program, and research portfolio. 

“CINA’s mission is to be at the forefront of criminal network analysis, forensics, and investigative processes in order to solve the hard problems of today and to forecast and address the problems and challenges of tomorrow,” Jones said in a statement. “We work closely with DHS components to understand current needs and operational environments, turning problems into ideas and fielded solutions.”

“Jim brings a strong background into this leadership role for the CINA Center,” said Deborah Crawford, Mason’s vice president for research, innovation, and economic impact. “The lead university in the CINA consortium, Mason is a top-tier research institution with a strong commitment to advancing research with significant societal impact. Our proximity to Washington, D.C., also allows us to connect our robust research enterprise and student workforce pipeline to a full range of industry professionals, DHS components, and preeminent researchers from government agencies.” 

The CINA Center leverages a core science committee—as well as a nationwide network of partners and colleagues throughout academia, industry, and law enforcement–to assess emerging technologies and potential solutions. Jones has served as a member of CINA’s science committee since the center was established, was a principal investigator of one of the center’s first funded projects, and placed its first CINA scholar interns.  

Jones has served as cybersecurity and digital forensics practitioner, researcher, and educator for more than 25 years in various industry, government, and academic roles. 

“Transnational Criminal Organizations are complex, dynamic, and ever-evolving,” he said. “I look forward to continuing our collective mission, to help DHS successfully address today’s current threats while working to stay ahead of the homeland security challenges of tomorrow.”

For more information on Mason’s CINA Center, please visit the center’s website.