Justin Kiersky

Southeast Asia Program Director

BA, Ethnography & International Studies, Goddard College, 2002

Justin has spent the majority of his adult life studying, traveling and working abroad. He juggled the responsibility of being a student-athlete while traveling to conduct independent research projects in Latin America, London and Utah’s canyonlands. After spending more than half his time in university abroad, he researched his senior study contrasting male adolescent development and indigenous rites of passage while living with in the Bribri village of Yorkin in Amistad National Park, Costa Rica/Panama.

Upon graduating, Justin travelled overland across much of southeast and south Asia to study peace and conflict resolution and sustainable development with Sarvodaya Shramadana in during the latter part of the Sri Lankan civil war. During those first travels in Asia, he became fascinated by the meteoric economic advancements as well as the socio-political and developmental challenges facing nations in the region.

After basing himself in China’s Yunnan province in 2004, Justin co-founded and served as editorial director for Yunnan Magazine, Horizons, and Mekong Travel—bilingual arts, culture and travel magazines focused on Yunnan and the Greater Mekong Subregion. He worked as a China field producer for VICE Media, documenting topics ranging from Lesser Red Pandas to the emerging Beijing underground music scene, as well as a consultant on Yunnan-related documentary films concerned with illegal poaching and logging practices in the ancestral lands of ethnic Lisu and Tibetan minorities. He has also worked on a variety of arts and media projects related to ethnic diaspora, cultural preservation, conflict and AIDS/HIV transmission along the Burma Road, and throughout the China’s southwestern borderlands.

When not in the office, Justin can (perhaps) be found skiing in the mountains of Colorado, working on photo-journalism projects or preparing for another odyssey.