Get to know Anthony Talbott

Tony TalbottBefore Anthony Talbott, lecturer in the Department of Political Science, began teaching at the University of Dayton, he served in the Army National Guard and the Navy for 13 years. While he was in the military, Talbott earned his BA in history and government. He decided to leave the Navy to continue his education. After working on his PhD at Arizona State University and completing a Fulbright fellowship in the Philippines, Talbott returned home to Ohio. He worked in Ohio as a part-time faculty member at many colleges. Talbott wanted to teach full-time at a college, and the University of Dayton offered him that opportunity in 2008.

The University of Dayton was the perfect environment for him to develop his awareness of human trafficking. Talbott got involved with the issue of human trafficking while he was abroad in the military. He remembers the first time he encountered human trafficking when he was stationed in the Philippines.

There was a main strip outside of the base, full of bars and prostitutes. This was normal. There was one bar called "Sweet 16." The oldest girls working at the bar were only 16, Talbott recalls from his time in the Philippines. "I knew it was wrong."

Once Talbott began working at UD, he wanted to bring attention to the issue of human trafficking. He started getting organizations together and getting students involved with the cause. On campus, Talbott serves as the faculty advisor for the New Abolitionist Movement, a student organization that raises awareness for and tries to stop human trafficking. Talbott also teaches a course on human trafficking, which is one of the country's first undergraduate courses on this topic. In the community, Talbott serves in a leadership position in the organization Abolition Ohio. This nonprofit works to end human trafficking in the Dayton area. With the efforts from these organizations, Talbott, his students and colleagues helped to get the first law prohibiting human trafficking passed in the state of Ohio.

Talbott is passionate about the topics he teaches, and that passion carries over into the classroom. He tries to instill that passion into his students. He wants to show them they should not just be passive observers, but they should try to make the change they want to see in the world. Talbott especially likes teaching first-year students as they do not yet have a full awareness of the world.

"I like to see how they learn about the unfairness and lack of justice in the world. Then, I can help them to see what they can do," Talbott explains. "I am truly blessed to have a job like this."

Talbott wants to continue to bring awareness to human trafficking and developing Abolition Ohio. He also wants to be able to connect his research, service and teaching more than he currently is. Lastly, he wants there to be an end to human trafficking.

"We have a chance to end modern-day slavery, if we act now," Talbott claims.