George Pesta is the Director of the Center for Criminology and Public Policy Research. At the Center, he manages funded research projects, supervises GRAs and collaborates with faculty on project deliverables, research reports, and presentations. He has extensive experience in conducting program evaluations and field research, including designing and administering surveys, reviewing administrative documentation, and conducting qualitative observations. He has primarily worked in the field of juvenile justice and correctional education for the past 18 years. His publications have been focused on the effectiveness and outcomes of juvenile justice programs.

George Pesta also serves as the Veterans’ Liaison for the College of Criminology and Criminal Justice, the Faculty Advisor for the Student Leadership Council, and the Faculty Liaison for the College Development Council.

Research Interests

Correctional Education | Juvenile Justice | Delinquency & Education


PhD. 2012, Florida State University, Education Leadership & Policy Studies

M.A. 1996, DePaul University, English Composition

B.A. 1992, Florida State University, English Literature


Project Director, “Building and Enhancing Criminal Justice Researcher-Practitioner Partnerships,” a three year $495,329 project with the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice and funded by the U.S. Department of Justice, National Institute of Justice, January 1, 2014.

Recent Publications

Blomberg, T. and Pesta, G. . 2014. “Delinquency and Education” The Encyclopedia of Juvenile Justice.

George B. Pesta, Trinetia Respress, Aline K. Major, Christine Arazan, Terry Coxe. 2013. “A Model and Test of Policy Making as Process” Evaluation Review.

Thomas G. Blomberg, Janine Blomberg, Gordon P. Waldo, George Pesta, Jon Bellows. 2006. “National Collaboration on No Child Left Behind in Juvenile Justice Education” Corrections Today.

George Pesta, Trinetia Respress, Aline K. Major, Christine Arazan and Terry Coxe. 2002. “Evaluation Research and Quality Assurance” Evaluation Review.

Selected Publications

Oakley, Cathy, George Pesta, Sabri Ciftci, and Thomas Blomberg. “A Model and Test of Policymaking as Process.” Journal of Politics and Law. 6.4 (2013):1-12.

Blomberg, Thomas G., Jeanine Blomberg, Gordon Waldo, George Pesta and Jon Bellows. “Juvenile Justice Education, No Child Left Behind, and the National Collaboration Project” Corrections Today. 68.2 (2006): 143-146.

Pesta, George B., Trinetia Respress, Aline K. Major, Christine Arazan, and Terry Coxe. “Evaluation Research and Quality Assurance,” Evaluation Review, 26.3 (2002): 281-271.

Pesta, George B. and Deborah R. Stahly. “Transition and Juvenile Justice Education,” Data-Driven Juvenile Justice Education, National Juvenile Detention Association, Richmond Kentucky, 2001, pp. 121-132.