Meet Our Executive Director


Executive Director

Executive DirectorBahman Baktiari is the Executive Director of the Baskerville Institute in Salt Lake City, Utah. The Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, nongovernmental organization devoted to supporting and strengthening the bonds of friendships between Iranian and American peoples. As an American institute named after the Presbyterian Howard C. Baskerville, who sacrificed his life fighting for Iranian democracy and liberty during the Constitutional Revolution 1906-1911, the founders of the institute are committed to continuing the legacy and memory of Baskerville who has been called the “American Lafayette of Iran.” Our guiding principle comes from Baskerville’s own words:

“I cannot remain and watch indifferently the suffering of [Iranian] people fighting for their rights, I am an American citizen and am proud of it, but I am also a human being and cannot help feeling deep sympathy with people of this city [Tabriz].”

Prior to this position, he has held various academic, administrative positions at University of Utah, University of Maine, American University in Cairo (AUC), and American University in Washington, DC. He received his PhD from University of Virginia in International Law and Government. Dr. Baktiari’s most recent publications include:

“40 years after the Iran hostage crisis, enduring bonds of friendship remain,” “How Can Iran and the United States Normalize Their Relationship After 36 Years of Mutual Satanization?,” “Sports Diplomacy With Iran: Breaking Barriers, Bridging Differences,” “Can the U.S. and Iran Become Trustworthy Rivals?,” and “Rouhani’s Nuclear Gridlock: Assessing the Domestic Challenges to President Hassan Rouhani’s Nuclear Deal with the West.”

He has published extensively in the area of Iranian culture and politics including Parliamentary Politics in Revolutionary Iran: Institutionalization of Factional Politics, “Seeking International Legitimacy: Understanding the Dynamics of Nuclear Nationalism in Iran” (Nuclear Politics in Iran), “Iran: Shari`a Politics and the Transformation of Islamic Law” (Shari’a Politics, Islamic Law, and Society in the Modern World), and “Revolutionary Iran and Egypt: Exporting Inspirations and Anxiety” (Iran and the Surrounding World).