Faculty and Staff


Gary S. Sasse
Founding Director

Gary Sasse has served as the Director of the Hassenfeld Institute since its founding in 2010. Previously, he served as Executive Director of the Rhode Island Public Expenditure council and Director of the Rhode Island Departments of Administration and Revenue.


Melissa Prosky, Ph.D.
Assistant Director of Policy

Since joining the Institute in 2015, Melissa has developed an extensive library of real-life case studies based on local events. Melissa’s work, including the research for a documentary on the 1991 banking crisis, is regularly integrated into Institute programming.

Melissa holds a Master of Public Affairs and Politics from Rutgers University and a Ph.D. in Politics from Brandeis University.


Justin R. Sullivan, MPA
Assistant Director of Programs

Since joining the Institute in 2019, Justin has expanded Institute programming, including introducing digital events. Justin’s work also includes developing policy reports and strengthening the Institute’s communications and outreach efforts.

A lifelong Rhode islander, Justin holds a Master of Public Affairs from Brown University.



Allison G. Butler

Ph.D., Professor, Psychology

Lori A. Coakley

Ph.D., Professor, Management

Michael A. Roberto

D.B.A., Professor, Management

Elzotbek Rustambekov

Ph.D., Associate Professor, Management

James Segovis

Ph.D., Associate Professor, Management

Edinaldo Tebaldi

Ph.D., Professor, Economics