Dr. Rastegar "is founder and has been the CEO of Relief International since the inception of the agency in 1990. He has a Doctorate of Philosophy in Comparative and International Education from UCLA and has served on the faculty of UCLA's Graduate School of Education, Sociology and Political Science departments. His research and program intervention interests include the impact of displacement on political marginalization and radicalism, minority-majority relations, Islamist political movements, and organizational learning behavior. His academic work includes study of the ideology and organization of the Afghan mujahedin organizations. Since founding RI, he has designed and overseen innovative approaches in transitional programming from relief to development and from centralized to market economies including integrated multi-sectoral approaches in active conflict areas such as Afghanistan, Albania, Azerbaijan, Burundi, Georgia, Kosovo and Tajikistan." 
"Farshad Rastegar is founder and CEO of Relief International (RI). Dr. Rastegar obtained his MA and PhD at UCLA. He has also been a lecturer at UCLA’s Graduate School of Education, Sociology and Political Science departments. Following his dissertation research on the political socialization of Afghan refugees, Dr. Rastegar founded RI in 1990 with a focus on assisting refugees and disaster victims through innovative empowerment strategies utilizing integrated, community development, multi-sectoral approaches." 
Resources and articles
- Conference 2005, April 23 - 24, University of Maryland, College Park, Iranian Alliances Across Borders , accessed July 14, 2007.