The U.S. Institute of Peace’s International Advisory Council (IAC) brings together thought leaders and senior policy experts committed to the Institute’s mission and activities. Members, who are former diplomats, corporate executives, and leaders in the field of conflict resolution, meet regularly to discuss ways to support the Institute’s mission to prevent, mitigate and resolve violent conflicts around the world by engaging directly in conflict zones and providing analysis, education and resources to those working for peace.
Robert J. Abernethy is president of American Standard Development Company and Self Storage Management Company and Managing Director of Metropolitan Investments, LLC.
Abernethy received a B.A. from Johns Hopkins University, a M.B.A. from Harvard Business School, certificates in Real Estate and Construction Management from UCLA and was formerly employed by Hughes Aircraft Company as Controller of its Technology Division.
For well over two decades, Mr. Abernethy served as a director of Public Storage, where he served as Chairman of the Audit Committee and has been a member of the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties since 1988. He is a member of the Self Storage Association’s Hall of Fame and was director of the Self Service Storage Association where he served as Past National Vice President, Secretary & Treasurer and Past Regional President, Vice President, Secretary & Treasurer. He is a member of the Los Angeles Chapter of Lambda Alpha International. He has been licensed as a California General Building Contractor since 1975.
Abernethy is a trustee emeritus of Johns Hopkins University, a trustee of Davidson College and a trustee of Loyola Marymount University. He is a member of the US Department of State Advisory Committee on International Economic Policy, a member of the Advisory Board of the Truman National Security Project and the Aspen Institute Society of Fellows. He is a member of the Harriman Society, Harvard Partners, Human Rights Watch, the UCLA Chancellor’s Cabinet and UCLA Arts Board of Visitors and on the Advisory Council of the School of Advanced International Studies Washington and Bologna. He serves on the executive committee and as Vice Chairman of the Atlantic Council and the Pacific Council on International Policy as well as a member of the chairman’s forum of the Council on Foreign Relations. He is a board member of the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship, the Brookings Institution, RAND Center for Global Risk & Security, the YMCA of Metropolitan Los Angeles, the Music Center of Los Angeles County, the Hollywood Bowl and the Peabody Conservatory.
S. Daniel Abraham is a leading American entrepreneur and dedicated philanthropist, who is the founder and former chairman of Slim-Fast Foods, the most successful diet product in history.
A WWII combat veteran, Mr. Abraham is a generous and thoughtful philanthropist dedicated to a variety of causes, among them improving health care and nutrition, encouraging Middle East peace, and broadening educational opportunities. His gift to the Mayo Clinic served to create the highly innovative Dan Abraham Healthy Living Center, whose opening in 2007 received national media coverage. A passionate advocate and supporter of higher education, Abraham has endowed an S. Daniel Abraham Chair in Middle East Policy Studies at Princeton University, and a Chair in Nutritional Medicine at Harvard University Medical School. He has also funded the Dan Abraham School for Business Administration and Economics at Bar-Ilan University in Israel, the S. Daniel Abraham Israel Program at Yeshiva University, and the S. Daniel Abraham Honors Program at Stern College for Women.
Mr. Abraham has strong ties to Israel, which he expresses through deep personal involvement and commitment. In 1989, Mr. Abraham and the late Utah Congressman Wayne Owens established the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace, which works with leaders and policy makers in the U.S. and Middle East to promote a just and comprehensive resolution to the Arab-Israeli conflict.
In the course of Mr. Abraham’s travels, he became convinced that Israel’s greatest security would come from peace with its neighbors, and this spurred his efforts to support the peace process. He is a close friend of many top leaders in the United States, Israel, and throughout the Middle East, and through those personal channels has worked tirelessly over the past two decades to help bring an end to the Arab-Israeli conflict. Mr. Abraham's tireless work in this arena prompted former President Bill Clinton to say: "When peace finally comes to the Middle East, it will be because of people like Dan Abraham."
Mr. Abraham and his wife Ewa reside in Palm Beach with their two children. He also has four grown daughters, twenty-seven grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren. He holds honorary doctorates from Ben-Gurion University, Bar-Ilan University and Yeshiva University.
Dr. Peter Ackerman is the Managing Director of Rockport Capital Incorporated, a private investment firm. Since its inception in 1990, Rockport has made numerous direct investments in fields as diverse as movie libraries, advertising, chemicals, wax refining, car windshield manufacturing, SMS integration, and internet-based food retailing. From 1978 to 1990, he was Director of International Capital Markets at Drexel Burnham Lambert, where he structured, financed, and invested in hundreds of recapitalizations including the largest and most complex leveraged acquisitions of that period.
Dr. Ackerman holds a Ph.D. from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy where he served 15 years as the Chairman of the Board of Overseers. He serves on the Board of the Council on Foreign Relations. Dr. Ackerman was Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Freedom House. He was also the Chairman of Americans Elect, whose purpose was to invite every registered voter in the United States to participate in a nonpartisan process to nominate candidates for the 2012 Presidential election through an online convention.
Dr. Ackerman is the founding chair of the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict. This mission of the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict is to develop the understanding and encourage the use of civilian-based, non-military strategies that will lead to the establishment and defense of democratic self-rule and human rights.
Dr. Ackerman co-authored Strategic Nonviolent Conflict published in 1994, and A Force More Powerful: a Century of Nonviolent Conflict. The latter volume was a companion book for the Emmy-nominated documentary of the same title which appeared nationally on the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) in September 2000, for which he was the series editor and principal content advisor. Dr. Ackerman was also executive producer of Bringing Down a Dictator, the Peabody award-winning documentary that chronicled the fall of Slobodan Milosevic in Serbia which premiered on PBS in March 2002. Currently, a third documentary Orange Revolution is being aired on PBS. All three films in aggregate have been translated in 13 languages and seen in over 80 countries.
Joanne Leedom-Ackerman is a novelist, short story writer, and journalist whose works of fiction include The Dark Path to the River and No Marble Angels. Joanne is vice president of PEN International and former international secretary of PEN International and former chair of its Writers in Prison Committee. She serves on boards of PEN American Center, PEN Faulkner Foundation and Poets and Writers. She also serves on the boards of the International Crisis Group, Johns Hopkins University and Refugees International and is an emeritus board member of Human Rights Watch and Brown University. A former reporter for The Christian Science Monitor, Joanne continues to publish articles and essays in newspapers, magazines and books. She has taught writing at New York University, City University of New York, Occidental College and in the Writers’ Program at the University of California at Los Angeles extension. She holds M.A. degrees from the Johns Hopkins University and Brown University and graduated from Principia College. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Joanne lives in Washington, DC.
Jacqueline Adams launched a second career as a communications strategist after more than two decades as an Emmy Award winning CBS News correspondent. A natural “connector” and talented interviewer and moderator, she has demonstrated her ability to hear clients’ strategic concerns and find creative solutions, often drawing on her wealth of contacts and experiences.
Through her boutique consulting firm, J Adams: Strategic Communications, LLC, she has provided communications counsel to corporate and non-profit clients, including the Ford Foundation and the global strategy firm, Burson-Marsteller. She played a significant role in the launch of the internet portal, Africa.com and is a major driver of the training program for minority media executives, the Diverse Future Initiative.
During her CBS News career, Ms. Adams covered the groundbreaking campaigns of Jesse Jackson for President and Geraldine Ferraro for Vice President before spending five years as a White House correspondent during the Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush administrations. In the 1990s, she described her beat as “mayhem and the arts.” She covered the trials of mass murderers Jeffrey Dahmer and Colin Ferguson as well as health and business news for the CBS Evening News with Dan Rather. She earned an Emmy Award for her work on the prime time broadcast, 48 Hours. For CBS Sunday Morning, she covered a series of blockbuster French Impressionism exhibits and developed an expertise in 20th century African-American art.
A graduate of Harvard Business School, Ms. Adams deliberately saves time for a number of non-profit activities in the foreign policy, arts and education sectors.
Ms. Adams serves on the Board of Directors of the Harvard Business School Club of New York City. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations as well as the Global Council of the Studio Museum in Harlem and the Advisory Council of the World Affairs Councils of America. In 2012, she helped launch the New-York Historical Society’s African American affiliate group, the Frederick Douglass Council.
For seven years, Ms. Adams served on the Program Committee of the Harvard Club of New York City. During her tenure, she created two major speaker series, Women & Power and The Future of Race Relations in America. In 2016, she helped organize the inaugural Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School symposium, Private Interests, Public Issues.
For 10 years, she co-led the Harvard Business School African-American Alumni Association mentoring program with KIPP Academy 7th graders in the South Bronx and served on the Board of the KIPP Charter Schools in NYC.
Ms. Adams has also served on the boards of Freedom House, the Foreign Policy Association, New York City Global Partners and chaired the Governing Board of the Off-the-Record Lecture Series (OTR), the oldest, largest women’s foreign policy lecture series in the United States. During her nine-year tenure on the OTR Board, speakers included former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, former National Security Advisors Brent Scowcroft, Anthony Lake and Robert McFarlane, former Ambassadors Richard Haass, Martin Indyk, Nicholas Burns, Frank Wisner, historians Doris Kearns Goodwin and Richard Norton Smith as well as award winning journalists Thomas Friedman, Nicholas Kristoff, Fareed Zakaria and Christiane Amanpour.
Ms. Adams was awarded an honorary doctor of humane letters degree from St. John Fisher College in Rochester, New York, on whose board she served for seven years.
In 2016, before an audience of 900 community leaders, she was presented with the Woman of Distinction Spirit Award by the Greater New York Chapter of The Links, Inc.
Nisha Biswal is the president of the U.S.-India Business Council at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
Ms. Biswal served as assistant secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs in the U.S. Department of State (2013-2017) where she formulated U.S. foreign policy and managed relations with Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. In this role, she led economic connectivity and regional security initiatives and the outreach to the newly elected Modi government. She also launched the U.S.-Sri Lanka Partnership Dialogue, and was the architect of the C5+1 diplomatic platform between the U.S. and the five countries of Central Asia to advance shared goals of combating terrorism, promoting sustainable economic growth and addressing environmental challenges.
Previously, Ms. Biswal served as assistant administrator for Asia at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), where she oversaw $1.2 billion in assistance to 22 nations and managed over 1,200 domestic and overseas staff. In addition to several other roles within the USAID, Ms. Biswal has held positions in the U.S. House of Representatives, the INTERACTION-American Council for Voluntary Action, and the American Red Cross.
Ms. Biswal is a current board member for the Institute for Sustainable Communities, a non-profit organization which works with local governments, residents and the private sector to support climate resilient and sustainable growth in the United States and Asia. She has also served on the board of the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition.
She earned a BA from the University of Virginia, and speaks Spanish, Hindi, and Gujarati.
Ms. Biswal is based in Washington, DC.
Rafic Bizri currently serves as president and CEO of Hariri Interests and related commercial real estate companies in the United States and as president and CEO of the Hariri Foundation-USA which has sponsored over 3,000 students from Lebanon in the United States and Canada. He has served as Financial Officer for Saudi Oger, one of the largest construction and development companies in Saudi Arabia, Controller and Owner Representative for a real estate development in Clayton Missouri, Controller and Investor Representative for Mediterranean Investors Group USA, President and Sole Director of Hariri Holdings, Director of Telscape International, Inc., and Controller For Holiday Inn, Charlotte. Mr. Bizri holds a Bachelor of Accounting and Finance from Virginia Commonwealth University.
Christopher “Chris” Carney is currently a member of the nine-person Military Compensation and Retirement Modernization Commission, and was a Member of the United States Congress from 2007-2011. The first Democrat elected in Pennsylvania’s 10th District in 48 years, Chris was a member of the Homeland Security Committee and he was appointed the Chairman of the Management, Investigations, and Oversight Subcommittee as a freshman legislator. In that capacity he reviewed DHS operations, plans, and its future direction. In particular, Chris had a direct role in guiding and developing DHS’ first QHSR (Quadrennial Homeland Security Review), and provided oversight on DHS’ $45B budget.
Moreover, as the second-ranking member of the Subcommittee on Intelligence, Information Sharing, and Terrorism Risk Assessment Chris had the opportunity to work with DHS and NCTC to develop policies pertaining to international as well as domestic terrorism. Chris was instrumental in helping DHS create and sustain Regional Fusion Centers to help state and local law enforcement officials have a more active role in homeland security. These fusion centers are a “push-pull” system of integrated intelligence sharing that keep the local officials apprised of national-level threats, and keep national decision makers aware of local and regional threats.
Closely related to his work on the Homeland Security Committee was his work as a member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. Chris served on the Subcommittee on Economic Development, Public Buildings, and Emergency Management, as well as the Subcommittee on Highways and Transit, and the Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials.
Prior to running for Congress, Chris was assigned to the Pentagon during OEF/OIF as a strategic analyst of the global terrorist threat. Having worked directly with the most senior decision-makers of the Bush administration, Chris provided Red Cell alternative analysis of the threat posed to the United States by al-Qaida, its network, and its affiliated groups. Chris ran DoD’s Policy Counterterrorism Evaluation Group (PCTEG), was part of the Abu Musab Zarqawi working group at the White House, and was the “Special Projects” intelligence officer for two tours during Operation Southern Watch working closely with the J2 and with members of the British Army and Air Force on low-visibility, high-impact intelligence sorties.
Commissioned as an Ensign in the United States Navy Reserve in 1995, Chris has served as an intelligence officer for over 15 years. Retiring at the rank of Commander, Chris ended his military career as a combat Mission Operation Commander (MOC) for the MQ-1 Predator, the MQ-9 Reaper, and RQ-4 Global Hawk ISR platforms.
Chris is a Founding Partner of Stone City Solutions, a strategic business development consulting firm focusing on health care, education, and alternative energy technologies.
Prior to his terms in Congress, Chris was an Associate Professor of Political Science specializing in security, terrorism, and international relations at Penn State University, where he wrote, published, and presented dozens of academic papers pertaining to international political economy and power relationships. Chris’ doctoral dissertation, which was titled International Patron-Client Relationships, used statistical analyses to explore the impact emerging powers have on global security arrangements and the global economy.
Chris earned his BSS in U.S. Diplomatic History and Environmental Science from Cornell College, a Master’s degree from the University of Wyoming in International Studies, and his Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Chris lives in Dimock, Pennsylvania with his wife Jennifer where they try to keep tabs on their five children.
Michael Chertoff is the executive chairman and co-founder of The Chertoff Group, a global advisory firm that provides business strategy, risk management, and mergers and acquisition (M&A) advisory services to clients seeking to secure and grow their enterprises. From 2005 to 2009, Mr. Chertoff served as secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, where he led the federal government’s efforts to protect our nation from a wide range of security threats, including blocking would-be terrorists from crossing our borders or implementing their plans if they were already in the country. Earlier in his career, Mr. Chertoff served as a federal judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit and head of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Criminal Division.
Chester A. Crocker is the James R. Schlesinger professor of strategic studies at Georgetown University’s Walsh School of Foreign Service and serves on the board of its Institute for the Study of Diplomacy. Dr. Crocker’s teaching and research focus on international security, conflict management and mediation.
From 1981 to 1989, Dr. Crocker served as assistant secretary of state for African Affairs. He developed the strategy and led the diplomacy that produced the treaties signed by Angola, Cuba, and South Africa in New York in December 1988. These agreements resulted in Namibia’s independence (March 1990) and the withdrawal of foreign forces from Namibia and Angola. President Ronald Reagan granted him the President’s Citizens Medal, the country’s second highest civilian award.
Dr. Crocker chaired the board of the United States Institute of Peace (1992-2004) and continued to serve as a director through 2011 of this independent, nonpartisan institution created and funded by Congress to strengthen knowledge and practice in international conflict. He serves on the board of the Good Governance Group Ltd, an independent strategic advisory firm. He is a
founding member of the Global Leadership Foundation, a leading international NGO that advises leaders facing governance and conflict challenges; and also serves on the board of the Ngena Foundation, and the international advisory board of International Affairs (London). He is a non resident distinguished fellow at the Centre for International Governance Innovation in Canada.
Dr. Crocker consults as advisor on strategy and negotiation to a number of U.S. and European firms.
Dr. Crocker’s previous professional experience includes service as news editor of Africa Report magazine (1968-69) and staff officer at the National Security Council (1970-72) where he worked on Middle East, Indian Ocean, and African issues. He first joined Georgetown University as director of its Master of Science in Foreign Service program, serving concurrently as associate professor of international relations (1972-80). He served as director of African studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (1976-80).
Dr. Crocker lectures and writes on international politics, U.S. foreign policy, conflict management and security issues, and African affairs. He appears on media and as a dinner or keynote speaker in the U.S., Europe and Africa.
Born in New York City in 1941, Dr. Crocker received his B.A. degree from Ohio State University (1963), graduating Phi Beta Kappa, with distinction in history. He received his M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, The International Institute of Strategic Studies, the International Studies Association, and the American Academy of Diplomacy.
Richard Danzig is vice chair of the board of trustees of RAND Corporation, a member of the Defense Policy Board, The President’s Intelligence Advisory Board, and the Homeland Security Secretary’s Advisory Council, a Trustee of Reed College, a director of the Center for a New American Security and a director of Saffron Hill Ventures (a European investment firm). In recent time he has been a director of National Semiconductor Corporation (NY Stock Exchange) and Human Genome Sciences Corporation (NASDAQ). He has also served as the chairman of the board of The Center for a New American Security and Chairman of the board of the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments.
Dr. Danzig served as the 71st secretary of the Navy from November 1998 to January 2001. He was the under secretary of the Navy between 1993 and 1997. From the spring of 2007 through the Presidential election of 2008, Dr. Danzig was a senior advisor to Senator Obama on national security issues.
Dr. Danzig is a member of the Aspen Strategy Group and a senior advisor at the Center for New American Security, the Center for Naval Analyses, and the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington DC. His primary activity is as a consultant to the Departments of Defense and Homeland Security on national security issues.
Dr. Danzig was born in New York City in 1944. He received a B.A. degree from Reed College, a J.D. degree from Yale Law School, and Bachelor of Philosophy and Doctor of Philosophy degrees from Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes Scholar. Upon his graduation from Yale, Dr. Danzig served as a law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Byron White.
Between 1972 and 1977, Dr. Danzig was an assistant and then Associate Professor of Law at Stanford University, a Prize Fellow of the Harvard Society of Fellows, and a Rockefeller Foundation Fellow. During this period, he wrote a book on contract law and articles on constitutional history, contracts, criminal procedure, and law and literature.
From 1977 to 1981, Dr. Danzig served in the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense, first as a deputy assistant secretary and then as the principal deputy assistant secretary of defense for Manpower, Reserve Affairs and Logistics. In these roles, he contributed particularly to the development of the Department’s ability to mobilize manpower and materiel for deployment abroad. In 1981, he was awarded the Defense Distinguished Public Service Award. He received that same honor—the highest Department of Defense civilian award—twice more in 1997 and 2001 for his work with the Navy and Marine Corps.
Between 1981 and 1993, Dr. Danzig was a partner in the law firm of Latham and Watkins. Resident in Washington, his unusually broad legal practice encompassed white-collar crime defense work, civil litigation, and corporate work, including heading the firm’s Japan practice. During this time he co-authored a book on National Service, taught contracts at Georgetown Law School, and was a Director of the National Semiconductor Corporation, a Trustee of Reed College, and litigation director and then vice chair of the International Human Rights Group. In 1991, he was awarded that organization’s Tony Friedrich Memorial Award as pro-bono human rights lawyer of the year.
Dr. Danzig and his wife, Andrea, reside in Washington, DC where Mrs. Danzig has an active practice as a psychotherapist. They have two adult children, David and Lisa. Mr. Danzig’s recent publications include “Driving in the Dark: Ten Propositions About Prediction” and as co-author of “Aum Shinrikyo: Insights into How Terrorists Develop Biological and Chemical Weapons,” both published in 2011 by The Center for a New American Security.
Debbie has lived in the Washington DC area for the past three decades, having grown up in Ontario, Canada.
She worked as a computer engineer in NASA's communication division at Goddard Space Flight Center until she retired in 1999 to oversee the construction of a home. She and her husband Frank Islam have since built another new home in Potomac, MD. Debbie has been involved in the Potomac Area Newcomers Group since 2002. Debbie is the vice president of the Frank Islam and Debbie Driesman Foundation.
Debbie serves on the Board of Directors of the National Symphony Orchestra, the Honorary Board of the Halcyon Foundation, the Board of Trustees of the Montgomery County Public Schools Educational Foundation, the Board of Trustees of the Shakespeare Theater Company, The Board of Directors of Washington Performing Arts, the Board of Montgomery Community Media, and the National Council of White House History. She and Frank are members of the Kennedy Center International Committee on the Arts, the Abraham Lincoln National Council at Ford’s Theater, the Wilson Center National Cabinet, the Madison Council at the Library of Congress, and the International Advisory Committee at the U.S. Institute of Peace.
Raymond DuBois is a senior adviser at CSIS, where he focuses on international security policy and defense management reform. He served as acting under secretary of the Army from February 2005 to February 2006. From October 2002 to May 2005, he was director of administration and management, responsible for all manpower, real estate, and organizational planning for the Office of the Secretary of Defense. Concurrently he was the director of Washington Headquarters Services, where as “mayor of the Pentagon,” he directly managed 2,500 employees and a $1.3-billion budget, the 800-person Pentagon Force Protection Agency, and the $5.5-billion Pentagon Renovation Program. From April 2001 through November 2004, DuBois served as the deputy under secretary of defense for installations and environment, during which time he managed the “Base Realignment and Closure” Program and established policy for the $660-billion worldwide inventory of installations, ranges, housing, utilities, and environmental programs.
Mr. DuBois was president of Potomac Strategies International LLC from 1995 to 2000, providing strategic management, marketing, and financial support to companies in the aerospace, electronics, telecommunications, and telemedicine industries. From 1990 to 1995, he worked for the Digital Equipment Corporation as director of strategic plans and policies of the Aerospace, Defense Electronics, and Government Group. He was also worldwide marketing director for the Defense Industries Group. From 1987 to 1990, he was the director of government affairs for the National Education Corporation and concurrently a managing director of its largest subsidiary, Applied Learning International, a leading computer-based training company. He served in the U.S. Army from 1967 to 1969, including nearly 13 months in Vietnam as a combat intelligence operations sergeant, where he received the Army Commendation Medal. He is the recipient of the Department of Defense Medal for Distinguished Public Service, the Army Civilian Distinguished Public Service Award (twice), the Navy Distinguished Public Service Award, the Air Force Decoration for Exceptional Civilian Service, and the Army Commander’s Award for Public Service. Mr. DuBois currently serves as a member of the International Advisory Council of the U.S. Institute of Peace. He also serves on the Advisory Board of the National Defense Business Institute at the University of Tennessee. Previously, he served as a member of the Defense Health Board and its NCR BRAC Health Systems Advisory Committee from 2006 to 2009. He also served as a member of the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Commission on Stabilizing Fragile States. Mr. DuBois received a B.A. degree from Princeton University.
A prominent policy strategist with a wealth of experience in the White House and on Capitol Hill, Jim is a premier analyst of legislative issues with a tight grasp on the intersection of politics and policy. He works closely with clients in government relations and international sectors, including major defense firms, smaller research consortia, and foreign policy advocates.
Jim has more than 30 years of experience working with the U.S. House Appropriations Committee, including serving as clerk and staff director for 10 years. During that time, he supervised a 125-person professional staff in discharging the Committee's responsibility to produce 13 annual appropriations bills. He also served as the principal committee liaison to leadership and assisted leadership staff in planning the House of Representatives agenda. Prior to his work with the U.S. House Appropriations Committee, Jim served as the Deputy Assistant for Legislative Affairs for Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, as the Principal Deputy Assistant for the U.S. Department of State, and as a budget consultant to the Secretary of the Navy.
In addition to his extensive public service, Jim worked extensively in the private sector, serving as the director of government relations for Philip Morris International and for the Power Systems Division of United Technologies Corp.
He is a senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and holds the distinguished public service award from the U.S. Navy.
Michèle Flournoy is co-founder and chief executive officer of the Center for a New American Security (CNAS).
She served as the under secretary of defense for policy from February 2009 to February 2012. She was the principal adviser to the secretary of defense in the formulation of national security and defense policy, oversight of military plans and operations, and in National Security Council deliberations. She led the development of DoD’s 2012 Strategic Guidance and represented the Department in dozens of foreign engagements, in the media and before Congress.
Prior to confirmation, Ms. Flournoy co-led President Obama’s transition team at DoD.
In January 2007, Ms. Flournoy co-founded CNAS, a non-partisan think tank dedicated to developing strong, pragmatic and principled national security policies. She served as CNAS’ president until 2009.
Previously, she was senior advisor at the Center for Strategic and International Studies for several years and, prior to that, a distinguished research professor at the Institute for National Strategic Studies at the National Defense University (NDU).
In the mid-1990s, she served as principal deputy assistant secretary of defense for strategy and threat reduction and deputy assistant secretary of defense for strategy. She has received several awards from the secretary of defense and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Ms. Flournoy was a member of President Obama’s Intelligence Advisory Board and CIA Director John Brennan’s External Advisory Board, and is currently a member of the Defense Policy Board, the Council on Foreign Relations, and the Aspen Strategy Group, and a senior fellow at Harvard’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. She also serves on the boards of The Mitre Corporation, CSRA, Amida Technology Solutions, The Mission Continues, Spirit of America, and CARE, and is a senior advisor at the Boston Consulting Group.
Ms. Flournoy earned a bachelor's degree in social studies from Harvard University and a master's degree in international relations from Balliol College, Oxford University, where she was a Newton-Tatum scholar.
Mr. Ford became LMI’s president in January 2009 and retired in June 2017. Under his leadership, LMI expanded its regional presence and broadened its capabilities into emerging federal and international markets, receiving multiple “small business partner” and “best place to work” awards along the way.
Before leaving government to lead LMI, Mr. Ford served as the under secretary of the Army from 2007 to 2009. Prior to that, he served as assistant secretary of the Army for Financial Management and Comptroller from 2006 to 2007 and principal deputy assistant secretary of the Army for Financial Management and Comptroller from 2005 to 2006. From 2002 through 2004, he was deputy assistant secretary for Health Budgets & Financial Policy in the Department of Defense.
He was president and CEO of a medical manufacturing company from 1997 to 2000 and was the chief operating officer and chief financial officer at Georgetown University Medical Center from 1991 to 1997. During the 1980’s, he managed the health care consulting practice for Coopers & Lybrand and has extensive experience in the governance of health care organizations.
Mr. Ford holds a BA in history from Duke University and an MA in education from the University of Delaware and has completed additional professional training at the University of Pennsylvania. His wife is a retired government attorney and their three children all currently serve in the active duty military.
Laurie S. Fulton served as U.S. Ambassador to Denmark from July 2009 to February 2013. She recently retired as a partner in the law firm Williams & Connolly LLP in Washington, D.C., where she practiced law for more than two decades and was recognized as one of “Washington’s Top Lawyers” by Washingtonian Magazine in 2004.
As Ambassador, she managed U.S. relations with Denmark, Greenland and the Faroe Islands in areas related to national security, counter-terrorism, arctic policy, piracy and international law enforcement, among others. She co-founded Green Partnerships for Growth, a bi-lateral, public-private initiative to develop U.S.–Danish business opportunities in green technology sectors. Ambassador Fulton organized and co-hosted the 2010 Conference on the Role of Women in Global Security for the U.S. and Nordic-Baltic countries, identifying best practices to assist women in becoming productive citizens in countries emerging from conflict, specifically Afghanistan, Liberia and Uganda. She was recognized for leadership and advocacy for inclusion and tolerance. Ambassador Fulton was awarded the Grand Cross of the Danish Royal Order of Dannebrog by Her Majesty Queen Margrethe II.
Ms. Fulton serves on the corporate board of Y.E.S., Your Electronic Supplier A/S. Ms. Fulton is Chair of the Honorary Advisory Board of the American-Danish Business Council. Ms. Fulton serves on the boards of non-profit organizations, including the Board of Directors of the Atlantic Council, Board of Directors of Stimson Center, Board of Trustees of the Meridian International Center, and Board of Trustees of Youth for Understanding. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Council of American Ambassadors, and the American Society of International Law. She served on the Board of Directors of the United States Institute of Peace from January 2004 to October 2008 and co-chaired the USIP International Advisory Council from 2008-2010.
Laurie Fulton earned a B.A. magna cum laude from the University of Nebraska at Omaha, which recently awarded her a Citation for Alumnus Achievement. Ms. Fulton earned a J.D. magna cum laude from Georgetown University Law School (GULC) and was awarded the Order of the Coif. She has been honored with an outstanding Alumnae Award from GULC and an honorary Doctorate in Public Service from South Dakota State University.
Dan Glickman is Vice President of the Aspen Institute and Executive Director of the Aspen Institute Congressional Program which is a non-partisan public policy education and civility building program for members of the United States Congress.
Mr. Glickman served as the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture from March 1995 until January 2001. Under his leadership, the department administered farm and conservation programs; modernized food safety regulations; forged international trade agreements to expand U.S. markets; and improved its commitment to fairness and equality in civil rights.
Before his appointment as Secretary of Agriculture, Mr. Glickman served for 18 years in the U.S. House of Representatives representing the 4th Congressional District of Kansas. During that time, he was a member of the House Agriculture Committee, including six years as chairman of the subcommittee with jurisdiction over federal farm policy issues. He was an active member of the House Judiciary Committee; chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence; and was a leading congressional expert on general aviation policy.
Mr. Glickman is also a Senior Fellow at the Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington, D.C. The BPC was formed in 2007 by former Senate Majority Leaders Howard Baker, Tom Daschle, Bob Dole and George Mitchell to develop and promote compromise and civility in government.
Mr. Glickman served as Chairman of the Motion Picture Association of America, Inc. (MPAA) from 2004 until 2010.
Prior to joining the MPAA, he was the Director of the Institute of Politics at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government (2002-2004).
Before his election to Congress in 1976, Mr. Glickman served as president of the Wichita, Kansas School Board; was a partner in the law firm of Sargent, Klenda and Glickman; and worked as a trial attorney at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. He received his Bachelor of Arts in history from the University of Michigan and his J.D. from The George Washington University. He is a member of the Kansas and District of Columbia bar associations..
Mr. Glickman is also on the board of directors of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange; Communities in Schools; chairman of the Food Research and Action Center, a domestic anti-hunger organization; member of the National 4-H Council; and the Center for U.S. Global Engagement, where he is Chair of the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition. He co-chairs an initiative of eight foundations, administered by the Meridian Institute, to look at long-term implications of food and agricultural policy. He chairs an initiative at the Institute of Medicine on accelerating progress on childhood obesity. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences; Council on American Politics at The Graduate School of Political Management at The George Washington University; World Food Program-USA. He is the co-chair of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs' global agricultural development initiative. He is also on the International Advisory Board of APCO Associates.
Melanie Cohen Greenberg is president and CEO of the Alliance for Peacebuilding. Before joining the AfP, she was the president and founder of the Cypress Fund for Peace and Security, a foundation making grants in the areas of peacebuilding and nuclear nonproliferation. From 2003 to 2004, she was a visiting scholar at the Johns Hopkins School for Advanced International Studies, focusing on issues of justice in post-conflict peacebuilding. From 2000 to 2002, Melanie was director of the Conflict Resolution Program at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. She previously served as associate director of the Stanford Center for International Security and Cooperation and deputy director of the Stanford Center on International Conflict and Negotiation.
In her work on international conflict resolution, Melanie has helped design and facilitate public peace processes in the Middle East, Northern Ireland, and the Caucasus. She has taught advanced courses in international conflict resolution, multi-party conflict resolution, and negotiation at Stanford Law School and Georgetown University Law Center and is currently an adjunct faculty member at the Elliott School of George Washington University. She was lead editor and chapter author of the volume Words over War: Mediation and Arbitration to Prevent Deadly Conflict (Rowman & Littlefield, 2000).
Melanie is a frequent writer, lecturer, teacher, and trainer in a broad range of areas related to international law, international security, and peacebuilding. In her training, she has led courses for Congressional staff, scientists at the National Institutes of Health, international lawyers, business executives, and graduate students from around the world. Recently, she helped facilitate government discussions on international legal protections for minorities in Tanzania and developed a set of training materials for government groups working on reconciliation in Kenya (both with the Public International Law and Policy Group).
Before beginning her work in international peacebuilding, Melanie practiced as a bankruptcy lawyer at Weil, Gotshal & Manges in Houston. She is on the board of the Institute of World Affairs. She served as board chair of Women in International Security and the Alliance for Peacebuilding and has sat on the boards of Dispute Resolution Magazine, Partners for Democratic Change, and the Lawyers Alliance for World Security. Melanie holds an AB from Harvard and a JD from Stanford Law School. She lives in Washington, DC with her husband and two teenagers.
Katie Hall is chief executive officer and co-chief investment officer of Hall Capital Partners LLC, which she founded in 1994. She is a member of the firm's Executive Committee and Investment Review Committee. Previously, Ms. Hall was a general partner of Laurel Arbitrage Partners, a risk arbitrage investment partnership that she founded in 1989. Prior to that, she was a general partner of HFS Management Partners (predecessor to Farallon Capital Partners), HFS Partners I, and Hellman & Friedman. Ms. Hall began her career at Morgan Stanley where she worked in both the risk arbitrage and mergers and acquisitions departments.
Currently, Ms. Hall is the chair of the Board of Trustees of Princeton University. She also serves on the Board of Trustees of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and is a member of the Federal Reserve Banks's 12th District Economic Advisory Council. Additionally, she is a member of the Investment Committee of the Smithsonian Institution, and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), and serves on the Board of Directors of NextGen Climate Action, NextGen Climate America, and The San Jose Earthquakes, a professional major league soccer team.
Previously, she served as the chair of the Board of Directors of the Princeton University Investment Company (PRINCO) from 2008 to 2011 and as a director from 1998 to 2011. She also served on the boards of Juma Ventures, Larkin Street Youth Center, Mills College, San Francisco Ballet Association, San Francisco Day School, St. Ignatius College Preparatory, Stanford Management Company, Thacher School, and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, as well as the board and investment committee of the UCSF Foundation. Additionally, she was a director of the American Century Mountain View Funds from 2002 to 2007.
Ms. Hall graduated cum laude from Princeton University with an A.B. in Economics and earned an M.B.A. from Stanford Graduate School of Business.
Frank F. Islam is an entrepreneur, philanthropist, civic leader and writer. Frank has a special commitment to civic, educational and artistic causes. In all of his endeavors, he strives to create opportunities that are sustainable and uplifting for humanity -- guided by the virtues of hard work, focus, quality, innovation and kindness.
Frank currently heads the FI Investment Group, a private investment holding company that he established in 2007 after he sold his information technology firm, the QSS Group. Frank founded the QSS Group in 1994 and built it from 1 employee to more than 2,000 employees.
Frank devotes the majority of time currently to a wide variety of civic and philanthropic activities. He serves and has served on numerous boards and advisory councils including the Board of Trustees of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts (2013 to 2019), Board of Directors of the Strathmore Center for the Arts (2008 to 2012), and the Kennedy Center International Committee on the Arts (2013 to present).
Mr. Islam serves as a member of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) National Advisory Board. He served as a member of the Advisory committee of the Export-Import Bank of the United States. Mr. Islam serves as a member of the Department of Commerce Industry Trade Advisory Committee (ITAC). Mr. Islam serves as a member of the Maryland Governor’s International Advisory Council and on National Democratic Institute (NDI) Chairman’s Council. He also serves as a member of the advisory board of the University of Maryland Smith School of Business. Mr. Islam serves as a member of American University in the Emirates (AUE) of board of trustees and as a member of the George Mason University School of Management Dean’s Council.
Over the past several years, Frank has established a reputation as a writer and thought leader. He has authored two books: Working the Pivot Points: To Make America Work Again (2013); and, Renewing the American Dream: A Citizen’s Guide for Restoring Our Competitive Advantage (2010). He is presently writing a third book with the working title: Education: Creating and Connecting All the Dots.
Frank blogs regularly for The Huffington Post and also writes occasional columns and articles for publications such as the International Business Times and the Economic Times of India. He hosts his own TV show “Washington Current Review” on MHz Networks and is called upon to speak frequently in a variety of business, education and non-profit venues.
Frank was an active participant in the information technology, aerospace engineering services, and systems integration business for more than twenty-five years. During his professional career, he garnered multiple industry awards for leadership, entrepreneurship and excellence. He was recognized by the Ernst and Young as Maryland Entrepreneur of the Year and the US Small Business Administration selected him as the Small Business Person of the Year of the Washington DC Metropolitan Area in 2001.
Frank received his Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Computer Science from the University of Colorado.
Alphonso Jackson is chief executive of A.R. Jackson Advisors, LLC. Jackson has decades of experience in housing and community development. His expertise includes development of affordable and market rate housing, handling complex urban development issues and housing finance. He also is a member of the International Advisory Board for First Data Corporation. The responsibility of the Board is to help expand the company’s growth in new and existing markets and to help First Data’s Clients grow their business. Jackson serves on the International Advisory Council of the United States Institute of Peace.
Jackson first joined First Data in January 2015 as their senior advisor. Based out of the Washington, DC office, Jackson’s primary focus was to strengthen First Data’s relationships with government entities, public policy initiatives, and maximizing business opportunities in the sector. His extensive government experience and public service background were critical to those efforts. In addition, Jackson helped expand and support First Data’s many diversity efforts.
In 2012, he served as vice chairman of Consumer & Community Banking at JP Morgan Chase in New York City. Prior to his role at JP Morgan Chase, he served as the distinguished university professor and director of the Center for Public Policy and Leadership at Hampton University in Hampton, Virginia.
Alphonso Jackson was appointed the 13th secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in March 2004. Nominated by President George W. Bush, he was unanimously confirmed by the United States Senate due to his strong background in housing and community development and expertise in finance and management.
Prior to his appointment as secretary, Jackson served as the Deputy Secretary of HUD, managing the daily operations of the $36 billion agency. Before his government service, Jackson was president and COO of American Electric Power, a $13 billion utility company in Texas. Prior to his tenure at AEP, he was president and CEO of the Housing Authority of the City of Dallas, which ranked among the best-managed large-city housing agencies during his tenure.
Jackson holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science and a Master’s in education administration from Truman State University. He also received a Juris Doctor degree from Washington University School of Law in St. Louis, Missouri.
Farooq Kathwari has served as the chairman, president and CEO of Ethan Allen Interiors Inc. since 1988. Mr. Kathwari serves in numerous capacities at several nonprofit organizations, including as chairman emeritus of Refugees International (RI); a member of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR); a member of Board of Overseers of the International Rescue Committee (IRC); a member of the advisory board of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS); director emeritus and former chairman and president of the American Home Furnishings Alliance (AHFA), and a director and former chairman of the National Retail Federation (NRF). He also serves on the boards of Western Connecticut State University Foundation and Arts Westchester. He founded and chairs the Kashmir Study Group. He served as a member of President Obama’s Advisory Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders from 2010 to 2014.
He has received several recognitions, including being inducted into the American Furniture Hall of Fame; the Outstanding American by Choice award from the U.S. government; the Eleanor Roosevelt Val-Kill Medal; the National Human Relations Award from the American Jewish Committee; the National Retail Federation gold medal; the International First Freedom Award from the Council for America’s First Freedom; Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award; the Anti-Defamation League’s Humanitarian Award, and the Entrepreneurial Excellence Award from the National Association of Asian MBAs. He was also recognized by Worth magazine as one of 50 Best CEOs in the United States.
He received a BA in English Literature and Political Science from Kashmir University, Srinagar, Kashmir and an MBA in International Marketing from New York University. New York, NY. He has also received three honorary doctorate degrees.
Tom Korologos is a strategic advisor at DLA Piper, one of the nation’s largest and most prestigious law firms. He served as United States ambassador to the Kingdom of Belgium from 2004 to 2007. In 2003 Ambassador Korologos was senior counselor to Ambassador L. Paul Bremer, Administrator, Office of Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) in Baghdad and in the Defense Department, Washington, D.C. He was also responsible for all CPA Congressional affairs including a key role in the passage of the President’s Iraq reconstruction supplemental budget request. Prior to going to Baghdad, from 1975 to 2003, Ambassador Korologos served as chairman of the executive committee and was co-founder of Timmons and Company, a Washington consulting firm. He served in the Nixon and Ford Administrations as deputy assistant to the President for Legislative Affairs (Senate). He also served nine years under Senator Wallace F. Bennett (R-UT). In 1980-1981 Ambassador Korologos served as director of Congressional Relations for President Ronald Reagan's transition and served both the Reagan and Bush Administrations as a volunteer assisting in various Senate confirmations. He also was director of Congressional Relations for the National Bipartisan (Kissinger) Commission on Central America. Ambassador Korologos has traveled extensively overseas as a member and chairman of the Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy, and from 1995 to 2002 as a member of the Broadcasting Board of Governors, which has jurisdiction over all non-military US Government radio and TV broadcasting overseas. Earlier in his career, Ambassador Korologos was a journalist with The New York Herald Tribune, The Long Island Press, The Salt Lake Tribune and the Associated Press. Ambassador Korologos has attended every Republican National Convention since 1972, serving several times as Director of Official Proceedings. He was a senior advisor to Senator Dole during his 1996 Presidential bid. In 2001, he served in the Bush-Cheney transition and managed the confirmation of Donald Rumsfeld as secretary of defense as well as other nominees appointed by President Bush. Ambassador Korologos earned his B.A. at the University of Utah and his M.S. at Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, where he received the Grantland Rice Fellowship and a Pulitzer Fellowship. He was born in 1933 in Salt Lake City, Utah and is married to Ann McLaughlin Korologos, former Secretary of Labor.
David Lane is president of The Annenberg Foundation Trust at Sunnylands, a post he has held since September 2016. Over the course of his career, he has been a leader in both non-profit and governmental sectors, including serving as U.S. representative to the United Nations Agencies in Rome from May 2012 until August 2016.
From 2007 until 2011, Ambassador Lane served as president and chief executive officer of the ONE Campaign, a global advocacy organization focused on extreme poverty, especially issues of global health, economic development, and effective governance. Before that, from 2001 until 2007, he founded and managed the East Coast office of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. As director of foundation advocacy, he shaped and executed the Gates Foundation’s strategy and approach to advocacy in areas such as global health, poverty alleviation, and education reform.
Ambassador Lane served in the Obama administration as assistant to the president and counselor to the White House chief of staff prior to his service in Rome. As the U.S. Representative, he promoted policy reforms in the areas of food security, agricultural development, poverty alleviation, development finance, and rule of law promotion.
In the 1990s, Ambassador Lane held several appointments in the Clinton administration, including executive director of the White House National Economic Council and chief of staff to the U.S. Secretary of Commerce.
Ambassador Lane is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and serves as chairman of the board of directors for the Stimson Center, a nonpartisan policy research center working to solve the world’s greatest threats to security and prosperity.
A native of Florida, Ambassador Lane earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Virginia in Political and Social Thought and a Master of Public Affairs from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University.
Marc Leland has served on the board of directors of the Institute of Peace and today plays a leadership role as chairman of the Institute’s International Advisory Council. As co-chairpersons of the design committee of the USIP building project, Marc and Jacqueline Leland played an important role in the selection of the architect and the approval of the initial design. Leland has served in the U.S. government as general counsel of the Peace Corps and Action, as a representative of the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency to the force reduction talks in Vienna and as deputy undersecretary of the U.S. Treasury Office of International Affairs. He has served as U.S. representative to the Paris Club, chairman of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. and co-chairs of the U.S.-Saudi and U.S.-China joint economic commissions. He was also a director of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation and the Inter-American Foundation. In the private sector, Leland has served as senior advisor to the Getty Trusts, and as director of many corporations including Avon, Zurich Financial Services, Global Asset Management, Kemper Investment Management, Caterair, Grove Atlantic Monthly Press, Noble Drilling, Strategic Investment Management and SG Warburg. He is co-chair of the German Marshall Fund, and is a member of Advisory Board of John Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer.
Dr. Aaron Lobel, a media entrepreneur and international affairs expert, is the founder and president of America Abroad Media (AAM), an international media organization based in Washington DC. AAM's mission is to empower and support local voices that convey universal values through creative content and media programming.
AAM reaches large scale audiences through innovative partnerships with leading media outlets in the United States and around the world, especially the Middle East. Under Dr. Lobel’s leadership, AAM has partnered with some of the world's leading broadcasters, journalists, directors, producers and writers to create original programming, including town halls connecting audiences across borders for dialogue, entertainment and drama series, and documentaries on key international issues.
In 2016, AAM launched a major initiative, Hollywood and the Middle East: Empowering Indigenous Voices and Storytellers, bringing top Hollywood talent to the Middle East to build the capacity of local storytellers to create compelling, original Arabic drama and entertainment content. Hollywood partners for this initiative include award-winning director Jack Bender (Game of Thrones, Lost, the Sopranos), writer and director David Zucker (Airplane!, Naked Gun series), and comedy writer and producer Greg Daniels (Saturday Night Live, The Office, King of the Hill) among others.
In the United States, AAM's award-winning radio program, America Abroad, is distributed by Public Radio International (PRI) and is one of America's only ongoing series devoted to critical global issues and US foreign policy.
Dr. Lobel also established AAM’s Awards Dinner, The Power of Film, an annual event which brings together the policymaking and diplomatic community in Washington with media leaders and the creative community from around the world. Past honorees have included director Kathryn Bigelow (Zero Dark Thirty and The Hurt Locker), director Paul Greengrass (United 93 and Captain Phillips), actor/director Ben Affleck (Argo), Homeland, TurkiAldakhil (CEO, Al Arabiya), Noura Al Kaabi (CEO, twofour54 Abu Dhabi), and Nasser Al Qasabi (Saudi comedian and actor).
Dr. Lobel received his Ph.D. in International Affairs from Harvard University's Department of Government, where he was awarded Harvard's top teaching award, the Joseph Levenson Prize. He has been a fellow at The Brookings Institution, the John M. Olin Institute for Strategic Studies at Harvard University, the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government, and Harvard University's Institute of Politics, where he led a study group and was Editor of the book Presidential Judgment: Foreign Policy Decision Making in the White House. Dr. Lobel also serves on the Advisory Board for the Edward R. Murrow Center for a Digital World at The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.
A native of Toronto, Dr. Lobel lives in Washington, D.C. with his wife Esin and two sons Noah and Sami.
Rafat (Ray) Mahmood moved from Pakistan to Alexandria, Virginia, in the early 1970s. With little money, he saved $5,000 to invest in a gas station in Alexandria. His hard work turned the business venture into a success, and he seized the opportunity to earn his real estate license and establish Mahmood Investment Corporation. Today he is president and CEO of the corporation. Mr. Mahmood rapidly expanded his enterprises into a broad array of developments. His projects have revitalized numerous locations, generating economic activity and creating jobs through his developments in the residential, hotel, and commercial sectors of the real estate industry. Mr. Rafat and his wife, Shaista, have made it their mission to bring people together to meet the challenges of U.S.-Pakistan relations. Mr. Rafat’s dedication to this important diplomatic work and his ability to unite people of many backgrounds have made him an indispensable presence in efforts to strengthen ties between America and South Asia. His official title, ambassador-at-large for Pakistan to the United States, with the status of minister, was given to him by Pakistani president Asif Ali Zardari, husband of the late Pakistani leader Benazir Bhutto. Ray and Shaista Mahmood have turned their home into a hub of political discussion and hospitality. They have hosted numerous fundraisers for Pakistan-based organizations and international organizations that help the underprivileged.
Pat Mitchell’s diverse background in media includes work as a journalist, network correspondent, producer and executive. Throughout her career she has focused on the power of media and storytelling as an agent of social change; specifically, to celebrate and raise awareness of the work, ideas and aspirations of women and girls. She was the first woman to launch, produce and host her own nationally syndicated Emmy winning talk program “Woman to Woman.” As an independent producer she has documented women’s history as well as women on the frontlines of war, poverty and peacemaking. As President and Executive Producer in charge of original productions for Ted Turner’s cable networks, her documentaries and specials received thirty-seven Emmy Awards, five Peabody Awards, and two Academy Award nominations. Pat Mitchell became the first woman president and CEO of PBS, and served as president and CEO of the Paley Center for Media where she led the institution through an exciting rebranding effort and strengthened its public and industry programs and optimizing the convening power of a global constituency of media and technology leaders to explore the impact and influence of media. Among the new initiatives she launched at Paley, a series called Women@Paley which includes co-producing and co-hosting TEDWomen in partnership with the TED organization and producing/hosting SHE'S MAKING MEDIA, a series of interviews with outstanding women in media, arts and entertainment, broadcast on PBS. Mitchell is a founding member of VDAY, a global movement to end violence against women, a board member of Acumen Fund and a corporate director of AOL. She has been honored numerous times for her achievements, including the Women's Media Center Lifetime Achievement Award, given every year in her name.
John Norton Moore is the Walter L. Brown Professor of Law at the University of Virginia School of Law. He also directs the University’s Center for National Security Law and the Center for Oceans Law & Policy and was the Director of the Graduate Law Program at Virginia for more than twenty years. Viewed by many as the founder of the field of national security law, Professor Moore chaired the prestigious American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Law and National Security for four terms. He is the author or editor of over 45 books and over 180 scholarly articles. He served for two decades on the editorial board of the American Journal of International Law and is currently an honorary editor of the Journal, in addition to serving on the editorial board of the Journal of National Security Law & Policy. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the American Law Institute (Life Member), the American Society of International Law, the Order of the Coif, Phi Beta Kappa, and numerous other professional and honorary organizations. In addition to his scholarly career, Professor Moore has a distinguished record of public service. Among seven Presidential appointments, he has served two terms as the Senate-confirmed chairman of the Board of Directors of the United States Institute of Peace and, as the first chairman, set up the organization. He also served as the counselor on International Law to the Department of State, and as ambassador and deputy special representative of the President to the Law of the Sea Conference, chairman of the NSC Interagency Task Force on the Law of the Sea, and as a member of the United States’ legal team before the International Court of Justice in the Gulf of Maine and Nicaragua cases. Professor Moore served as a member of the Director of Central Intelligence’s Historical Review Board from 1998-2002. In the recent past, he has served as a consultant to both the President’s Intelligence Oversight Board and the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency. He has also been a member of the National Advisory Committee on Oceans and Atmosphere, the United States Delegation to the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe, and the Presidential Delegation of the United States to observe the elections in El Salvador. In 1990, he served, with the Associate Attorney-General of the United States, as the Co-Chairman of the United States-USSR talks on the Rule of Law. He also served as the legal advisor to the Kuwait Representative to the United Nations Iraq-Kuwait Boundary Demarcation Commission. Currently he is also a consultant to the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) Society.
Maya is the director of the Matsunaga Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution at the University of Hawaii at Manoa where, in addition to leading outreach and development initiatives and running the internship program, she also teaches Leadership for Social Change, History of Peace Movements, Peace Education, and Conflict Management for Educators. She was awarded a masters degree in Secondary Education from NYU's College of Education and a PhD in Multicultural Education from the University of Hawaii. For many years, she worked at the University of Hawaii's College of Education where she taught Multicultural Education, Social Studies Methods, and Peace Education at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. Maya has published a number of book contributions as well as a picture book entitled Ladder to the Moon and is currently under contract to write a Young Adult novel entitled Yellowwood. Maya sits on many voluntary boards and is the co-founder of the nonprofit Ceeds of Peace, which creates peacebuilding action plan workshops for educators, families and community leaders.
Andre is a private investor. He serves as the Executive Chairman of C5 Partners, a specialist technology investment company. He also serves as the Deputy Chairman of the Advisory Council of Cranemere Inc, a permanent capital industrial investment company.
He founded and served as the Group CEO of the Good Governance Group (G3) (2004-2014), a consulting firm that advises global companies and international law firms on foreign direct investment, compliance and cybersecurity.
He serves as a trustee of the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation, a charity focused on wildlife conservation. Andre is also a Council Member of the African Union Foundation, a charitable organisation emerging from the African Union which works to mobilise domestic resources for Africa’s development. Andre is Founder and Chairman of the Leadership Technology Centre, a charitable organisation which aims to facilitate the provision of technologies and services to community and charity leaders.
Andre is an Advocate of the Supreme Court of South Africa.
With wide-ranging experience working on national security issues in the White House, the State Department, and the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, Stephen Rademaker helps clients navigate international policy, sanctions, and CFIUS challenges.
Among his accomplishments in public service, Mr. Rademaker had lead responsibility, as a U.S. House staffer, for drafting the legislation that created the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Serving as an assistant secretary of state from 2002 through 2006, he headed at various times three bureaus of the State Department, including the Bureau of Arms Control and the Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation. He directed the Proliferation Security Initiative, as well as nonproliferation policy toward Iran and North Korea, and led strategic dialogues with Russia, China, India, and Pakistan. He also headed U.S. delegations to numerous international conferences, including the 2005 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Nonproliferation of Nuclear Weapons.
Mr. Rademaker concluded his government career on Capitol Hill in 2007, serving as senior counsel and policy director for National Security Affairs for then-Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-TN). In this role, he helped manage all aspects of the legislative process relating to foreign policy, defense, intelligence and national security. He earlier served as chief counsel for the House Select Committee on Homeland Security of the U.S. House of Representatives and as deputy staff director and chief counsel of the House Committee on International Relations.
During President George H. W. Bush’s administration, Mr. Rademaker served as general counsel of the Peace Corps, associate counsel to the President in the Office of White House Counsel, and as deputy legal adviser to the National Security Council. After leaving government in 2007, he continued to serve as the U.S. representative on the United Nations Secretary-General’s Advisory Board on Disarmament Matters, and he was subsequently appointed by House Republican Leader John Boehner (R-OH) to the U.S. Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism.
Mr. Charles S. Robb serves as chairman of the Board of Trustees of The MITRE Corporation. He first joined the board in 2001, was elected vice chairman in 2006, and became chairman in 2014. Previously, he served as Virginia's 64th Governor (1982 to 1986), following a term as Lieutenant Governor (1978 to 1982). He later served as a United States Senator (1989 to 2001), before joining the faculty of George Mason University (GMU) as a Distinguished Professor of Law and Public Policy. While in the Senate, he became the first member ever to serve simultaneously on all three national security committees (Intelligence, Armed Services, and Foreign Relations). He also served on the Finance, Commerce, and Budget Committees. Before becoming a member of Congress, Mr. Robb chaired the Southern Governors' Association, the Democratic Governors' Association, the Education Commission of the States, the Democratic Leadership Council, Jobs for America's Graduates, the National Conference of Lieutenant Governors, and the Virginia Forum on Education. He also served as president of the Council of State Governments. During the 1960s, he served on active duty with the U.S. Marine Corps, retiring from the Marine Corps Reserve in 1991. He began as the Class Honor Graduate from Marine Officers Basic School in 1961 and ended up as head of the principal recruiting program for Marine officers in 1970. In between, he served in both the 1st and 2nd Marine Divisions, and his assignments included duty as a military social aide at the White House and command of an infantry company in combat in Vietnam. He received his law degree from the University of Virginia (U.Va.) in 1973, clerked for Judge John D. Butzner, Jr., on the U.S. Court of Appeals, and practiced law with Williams and Connolly prior to his election to state office. Between his state and federal service, he was a partner at Hunton and Williams. Since leaving the Senate in 2001, he has served as chairman of the Board of Visitors at the United States Naval Academy; co-chairman (with Sr. Judge Laurence Silberman of the U.S. Court of Appeals) of the President's Commission on Intelligence Capabilities of the United States Regarding Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD); and co-chairman (with former Virginia Governor Linwood Holton) of a major landowner's alliance formed to help finance the extension of Metrorail to Tysons Corner and Dulles Airport. He has also been a member of the President's Intelligence Advisory Board; the Secretary of State's International Security Advisory Board (chairman, WMD-Terrorism Task Force); the FBI Director's Advisory Board; the Iraq Study Group; the Critical Incident Analysis Group; and the Afghanistan Study Group. He was a Fellow at the Institute of Politics at Harvard University and at the Marshall Wythe School of Law at William & Mary. He also served on the Council on Foreign Relations Independent Task Force on Pakistan and Afghanistan and the boards of the Space Foundation; the Thomas Jefferson Program in Public Policy; and the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations. He is currently a co-chairman of the Aspen Institute/Rockefeller Commission to Reform the Presidential Appointments Process and a member of the Center for Infrastructure Protection Advisory Board; the Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress Advisory Board; the Robertson Foundation Advisory Board; the Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy Advisory Board at U.Va.; and the Homeland Security Policy Institute Advisory Board at George Washington University. He also serves on the boards of the Bipartisan Policy Center (co-chairman of the Iranian Nuclear Development Task Force); the Concord Coalition; the Pew/Peterson Foundation's Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget; the Research Strategies Network; the National Museum for Americans in Wartime; Strategic Partnerships LLP; GMU's Critical Infrastructure Protection Program; and works on occasional advisory projects with the Center for Strategic and International Studies. In 2010, he was appointed as an independent director on the board of the Invacare Corporation. He is married to Lynda Johnson Robb. They have three daughters and three grandchildren.
Michael M Roberts is the head of Global Corporate Banking and Lending within Citi’s Corporate & Investment Banking. In this role, Mr. Roberts focuses on several areas such as further developing Citi’s leading Corporate Bank, which provides the highest quality cross border corporate banking solutions to the world’s multinational corporations through Citi’s unrivalled global network. He is also responsible for the end-to-end management of Citi’s corporate loan portfolio.
Mr. Roberts also assumed the role of chief lending officer for Citibank, N.A., and is responsible for all loan-related activities for Citibank globally, which includes the ICG, the Private Bank and the Consumer Bank.
Prior to his present position, he was the deputy head and COO of Citi’s Global Corporate Bank, a position he held from April 2007 to December 2008.
Previously, Mr. Roberts was a managing director and head of Global Financial Institutions, a position held between April 2007 and January 2003, and head of Global Automotive and Industrials (2002), within Citibank’s Global Relationship Bank. Prior to these assignments, Mr. Roberts was chairman and chief executive oficer of Citibank Canada, the leading foreign bank operating in Canada from 1998 until 2002.
He also served in various positions with the bank in France, Belgium and Turkey.
Mr. Roberts received a BA in Economics from the University of Texas and an MA in International Affairs (Banking and Finance) at Columbia University’s School of International Affairs.
He is also a member of the Board of Directors of British American Business; The Regional Plan Association; The School of International & Public Affairs (SIPA), Columbia University; and The Swedish-American Chamber of Commerce.
Mr. Roberts is married and has two daughters, and lives in New York.
Antonio J. Soave is the former secretary of commerce for the State of Kansas. The governor officially appointed him as secretary on November 4, 2015, and he served in that capacity until July of 2017. During his tenure at the Kansas Department of Commerce, Mr. Soave was credited with having created the “Jump Start Kansas Entrepreneurs” grant program for start-up companies across the state, the “Made in Kansas, Heart of America” manufacturing initiative that culminated in the Global Manufacturing Summit on the campus of Pittsburg State University on April 6, 2017, and the “Outer Space Initiatives” project to attract global satellite production companies to Kansas. He also negotiated myriad trade, business and economic deals for the State of Kansas locally, nationally and globally.
Mr. Soave is the former chairman, president and CEO of CGA, Inc. in Overland Park, Kansas. CGA is a boutique international business transactions firm that had offices in Europe, Latin America and the Middle East. In his capacity as chairman and CEO of CGA, he assisted numerous businesses to expand their operations abroad, establish Greenfields, engage in joint ventures, structure strategic alliances, and conduct business activities on a global scale. He did so in a number of business sectors including, but not limited to, the following: infrastructure, rail, construction, oil & gas, automotive, agriculture, biotech, healthcare and heavy manufacturing. He is also active in business restructuring and Merger & Acquisition consulting, as well as the provision of extensive market research and business intelligence reports. Apart from the United States, Canada and Mexico, he has worked extensively in Europe, South America and parts of the Middle East (principally the Gulf Cooperation Council (“GCC”) countries).
He has also been involved with the arts and with sports – from helping to produce film projects with a positive and uplifting message to venturing with Disney’s Wide World of Sports for a series of soccer camps from 1999 to 2003.
Mr. Soave is married to Ann Benage Soave, a native of Fort Scott, Kansas. Together, Ann and Antonio have four children: Francesco, Maria Bernadette, Gianpaolo and Anna Maria. Mr. Soave has a B.A. in International Studies from The American University in Washington, D.C. where he was a distinguished Sigma Iota Rho scholar for demonstrated excellence in foreign affairs, a Juris Doctor from the Detroit College of Law at Michigan State University where he received the Rakow Scholarship from the Federal Bar Association for creating the Journal of International Law & Practice, and a LLM (Masters of Law) in International Law from the University of San Diego where he was on a university merit scholarship. He is a former high school All-American athlete in the sport of soccer.
Charles Duryea Smith IV has worked for universities, non-profits, the federal government, and the United States Institute of Peace.
With Senator Spark M. Matsunaga, chairman of the presidential Commission on Proposals for the National Academy of Peace and Conflict Resolution, he wrote the final report, which included the US Institute of Peace Act. Hired by the USIP board as general counsel, he helped develop the original programs, created the endowment, and established the rule of law initiative. He wrote the introduction to the Institute’s ground-breaking 3-volume publication, Transitional Justice.
He was a staff member of two additional presidential commissions: the Hesburgh commission on immigration and refugee policy and the commission on Japanese-American internment. He was a Peace Corps volunteer and, much later, the Peace Corps inspector general. As IG, he managed a professional staff of auditors, program evaluators, and investigators; submitted over 300 reports to the director and semi-annual reports to Congress; and testified on agency issues.
His publications include The Hundred Percent Challenge: Building a National Institute of Peace; Ratification of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (with John Norton Moore, used in Senate ratification); Right to Counsel in Criminal Cases: The Mandate of Argersinger v. Hamlin (with Sheldon Krantz); Employer Sanctions and Other Labor Market Restrictions on Alien Employment (with Juan Mendez); and Information Management … for Migration Systems, Data Standards, and Process Improvement (editor, National Academy of Public Administration’s report to the Department of Defense).
He is a graduate of Phillips Academy (Andover), has degrees from Oberlin College, BA, Washington University, MA (English literature), and Boston University law school, JD, and did graduate work at Harvard law school.
Anne Solomon’s professional work focused on international science and technology policy. She began her career at the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in Washington, DC as director of the Committee on Scholarly Communication with the People’s Republic of China during the early years of renewed U.S.-China ties.
Subsequently, on leave from the NAS, she served in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy in the Carter administration, developing the first U.S.-China science and technology agreement. During the mid-1990s, she served at the Department of State as deputy assistant secretary for science, technology, and health.
Anne also has held senior positions at the Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress, the Center for Strategic and International Studies and the Carnegie Institution of Science.
In addition to her Stetson University undergraduate degree in comparative literature, Anne holds a Masters of Public Administration from Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government and studied Mandarin Chinese at the Yale-in-China Center in Hong Kong, SAR.
Anne is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations and the United States Institute of Peace International Advisory Council. She currently is writing on the importance of risk taking and resilience in one’s professional and personal life.
Gillian Sorensen is a 2014 fellow in Harvard University's Advanced Leadership Initiative. Prior to that, she had a long career with the United Nations. From 1997-2003 she was assistant secretary-general for External Relations on appointment by Secretary-General Kofi Annan, responsible for outreach to NGOs and academic, religious and political leaders and others committed to peace, justice, development and human rights. From 1993-1996 she was special advisor for Public Policy to Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali where she led the planning of the UN's 50th anniversary and coordinated the UN50 Summit. She is an experienced public speaker and often represented the UN in this country and abroad addressing audiences as diverse as Rotary International, the Air Force Academy, university students and faculty, and leaders of civil society. Ms. Sorensen served the United Nations Foundation from 2003-2023 as national advocate/senior advisor delivering more than 800 presentations to audiences both expert and new to UN matters. The Foundation was launched by CNN founder Ted Turner to assist, support and partner with the UN and others in the promotion and protection of peace. She earlier served as New York City Commissioner for the United Nations and Consular Corps on appointment by Mayor Edward I Koch where she led the city's liaison office with the world's largest diplomatic corps. Responsibilities included matters related to diplomatic security and immunity, housing and education and other business and cultural contacts between the host city and over 30,000 diplomats. Known for her skills as a consensus builder and negotiator, she was described by the New York Times as the "Diplomat's Diplomat." Gillian Sorensen is a graduate of Smith College and studied at the Sorbonne. In 2002 she was a fellow at Harvard's Kennedy School Institute of Politics. She serves on the Board of the International Rescue Committee and the University of Southern California Center on Public Diplomacy and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Women's Foreign Policy Group and the Women's Forum. She has been honored for her work by the U.N. Ambassadors; the New York Consular Corps; Rotary International; the United Nations Association; the International Chamber of Commerce; the New York Bar Association and Roots of Peace, an honor presented at the US State Department. In addition to her public service, she has been active in politics and was a delegate to three national Presidential conventions. She is the widow of the late Theodore C. Sorensen, attorney, writer and Special Counsel to President John F. Kennedy.
Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel, a writer, activist, and television interviewer and producer, is known for her involvement in the fields of art, design, architecture and public policy. She has held public positions in the US, including director of the Department of Cultural Affairs in New York City, on the board of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, on the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts, and as a Commissioner of the American Battle Monuments Commission. Diamonstein-Spielvogel was a White House Assistant, and help create the White House Fellows and the Presidential Scholars Program. She was the first Director of Cultural Affairs in New York City, and was the longest serving Landmarks Commissioner, serving under four New York City Mayors. She has also served as a Member of the NYC Cultural Affairs Commission, where she was Chair/Founder of the Mayor's Awards of Arts and Culture, and was a Commissioner on the NYC Art Commission (now the Public Design Commission). She is currently the Chair of the Historic Landmarks Preservation Center and the NYC Landmarks50 Alliance, and the Vice Chair of the N.Y. State Council on the Arts. In September 2013, she was elected a Democratic National Committeewoman from New York State for a four-year term. Diamonstein-Spielvogel was appointed by President Ronald Reagan to the Board of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, where she served as Chair of the subcommittee that commissioned all of the original art created for the museum. In 1992, she was appointed to the United States Commission of Fine Arts by President Bill Clinton, and was the first woman Vice Chair of the CFA. Since 1995, Diamonstein-Spielvogel has been the Chair of the Historic Landmarks Preservation Center (HLPC), creating a Cultural Medallion program documenting notable occurrences, distinguished individuals and other important aspects of New York City’s cultural, economic, political and social history. Among other programs, the HLPC initiated, created, designed and financed all of the terra cotta street signs in each of New York City's Historic Districts. In 2012, she became the Chair of NYC Landmarks50, a group collaborating to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the New York City Landmarks Law. She was a founding board member of the High Line, a disused elevated rail line, which has been transformed into a mile-long public park. President Barack Obama named her a Commissioner of the American Battle Monuments Commission, which has responsibilities related to the design, construction, and maintenance of military memorials throughout the world. In 2010, Diamonstein-Spielvogel was appointed a director of the Trust for the National Mall in Washington D.C. In July 2013, she was named to lead the American delegation in Busan, Korea and was the keynote speaker at the ceremony commemorating the 60th anniversary of the armistice of the Korean War, attended by leaders and veterans of 21 participant nations. Diamonstein-Spielvogel served as an interviewer/producer for seven television series about the arts, architecture, design, crafts, and public policy for the Arts & Entertainment Network, and other programs for national networks including CBS and NBC. Nearly two hundred of her television interviews are now available on iTunes U and YouTube, digitized by the Diamonstein-Spielvogel Video Archive at Duke University. Diamonstein-Spielvogel has also been a contributing author to publications including The New York Times, Vogue, Ladies Home Journal, Harper's Bazaar, the Partisan Review, Art News, and many others.
Catherine Ann Stevens advises clients across a variety of issues and topics, including government-related concerns, oil and gas, natural resources, healthcare, transportation, aviation, corporate, museum administration and patrimony disputes, charitable foundations and medical research institutions.
Catherine joined Mayer Brown in 2001. Previously, she served as executive director of the Terra Foundation for the Arts (1996–2000), with executive responsibility for art museums in Chicago, Illinois and Giverny, France. Catherine also served as general counsel for the National Endowment for the Arts, Washington, DC (1992–1993) and for Occidental International Corporation (1989–1991). Earlier, she held the position of Alaska counsel for a joint venture petrochemical project (1979–1980). From 1975 to 1979, she was a partner with an Alaskan law firm, with a practice in oil and gas and aviation law. Catherine also held government positions, including district attorney for the Fourth Judicial District, State of Alaska (1974–1975); assistant attorney general for the State of Alaska’s Civil Division, Juvenile Court and Consumer Protection (1972–1974); and assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of California, Criminal Division (1970–1972). From 1965 to 1966, Catherine worked in the Office of United States Senator Ernest Gruening in Washington, DC.
Jake Sullivan is a senior fellow in Carnegie’s Geoeconomics and Strategy Program and a Martin R. Flug Visiting lecturer in law at Yale Law School.
Sullivan served in the Obama administration as national security adviser to Vice President Joe Biden and director of policy planning at the U.S. Department of State, as well as deputy chief of staff to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. He was the senior policy adviser on Secretary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and previously served as deputy policy director on Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential primary campaign and as a member of the debate preparation team for Barack Obama’s general election campaign.
Sullivan has also been a senior policy adviser and chief counsel to Senator Amy Klobuchar from his home state of Minnesota, worked as an associate for Faegre & Benson LLP, and taught at the University of St. Thomas Law School. He clerked for Judge Stephen Breyer of the Supreme Court of the United States and Judge Guido Calabresi of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
Sullivan holds undergraduate and law degrees from Yale and a master’s degree from Oxford.
Richard C. “Rip” Sullivan, Jr. is a shareholder at the law firm of Bean, Kinney & Korman, practicing in the area of commercial litigation. He has represented clients in Virginia and federal courts for nearly thirty years.
Rip represents a wide variety of clients including banks, construction and real estate firms, technology companies, government contractors and nonprofits.
In addition to his law practice, Rip is a member of the Virginia House of Delegates representing the 48th District. He is also active in numerous community, civic and professional organizations. Prior to becoming a lawyer, Rip led the national organization which successfully lobbied Congress and the White House to create the U.S. Institute of Peace.
He lives in McLean, Virginia with his wife Beth. They have four grown children.
M. Mary Green Swig is president and CEO of Mary Green Enterprises, a trendsetter in the design and manufacture of men’s and women’s silk apparel. She has earned many prestigious design and fashion awards, including such honors as her recent selection as one of the Leading Women Entrepreneurs of the World. In 1985 she extended her collections to include a men's line, known as Mansilk. She has been the recipient of several industry awards for design excellence. Mrs. Swig has traveled extensively, specializing in Asia, and is regarded as an expert on trade in China. She co-authored the bestselling book, How to Be an Importer and Pay for Your World Travel. Mrs. Swig serves on the board of The Stephen Stills Foundation and the Solar Electric Light Fund, and is a past member of the board of the American Oceans Campaign. She is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley.
Steven L. Swig, Esq., is cofounder and president emeritus of Presidio World College, a business school offering an MBA program in sustainable management. He serves as chairman of the board of both the Swig Company, a multifaceted real estate firm, and Mary Green Enterprises, a men's furnishings and women's lingerie design and manufacturing company. Mr. Swig serves on wide range of boards, including those of the American Conservatory Theater, the American Himalayan Foundation, the American Jewish Committee, the Solar Electric Light Fund, the Americans for Cures Foundation (promoting advocacy for stem cell research), the Stephen Stills Foundation, the American Associates of Ben Gurion University, and the Tech Museum of Innovation. Mr. Swig is a graduate of the University of Oregon and the University of Santa Clara School of Law. Formerly with the law office of Joseph Alioto, he was partner and managing director of Titchell, Maltzman & Mark; executive vice-president of Swig, Weiler & Dinner Development Co.; and of counsel with Howard, Rice, Nemerovski, Canady, Falk & Rabkin.
Dr. Amy A. Titus is a managing director in consulting at Deloitte. She is responsible for delivering talent management, learning and leadership, and change solutions to her clients. She brings considerable industry depth, thought leadership and international insights to Deloitte’s Clients, given her thirty years of global experience. She was instrumental in establishing Deloitte University and introducing transformative practices. Before joining Deloitte, she held executive roles in BearingPoint and Citigroup spanning the full range of global human resource functions. Prior to that, she was president of a management consulting firm with offices in Washington, DC, Geneva, Switzerland and Cairo, Egypt. She holds a doctorate in Adult Education from Teachers College, Columbia University.
Stephen Joel Trachtenberg is president emeritus and University Professor of Public Service at The George Washington University. He served as GW’s 15th president for nearly two decades, from 1988 to 2007. Trachtenberg came to GW from the University of Hartford, where he had been president for 11 years. He also held positions as vice president and dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Boston University, and served as the special assistant to the U.S. Education Commissioner, Department of Health, Education and Welfare. He is a partner of Korn/Ferry International. Trachtenberg is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, Phi Beta Kappa, the Bankinter Foundation in Madrid and the Ditchley Foundation in England. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a fellow of the American Bar Foundation and a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration. Trachtenberg has published six books: Presidencies Derailed: Why University Leaders Fail And How to Prevent It published by Johns Hopkins University Press; BMOC: A University President Speaks Out on Higher Education published by Simon and Schuster’s Touchstone Press; Write Me A Letter: The Wit and Wisdom of Stephen Joel Trachtenberg; Reflections on Higher Education; Thinking Out Loud: A Decade of Thoughts on Higher Education; and Speaking His Mind: Five Years of Commentary on Higher Education. He is co-editor of two books: The Art of Hiring in America's Colleges & Universities and Letters to the Next President, published by The Korn/Ferry Institute. Trachtenberg has served on numerous boards such as the DC Chamber of Commerce, the Board of Trade and the Federal City Council. He was a member of the Board of the Loctite Corporation, MNC and Riggs Banks. Trachtenberg chaired the Rhodes Scholarships Selection Committee for Maryland, North Carolina and the District of Columbia. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Columbia University, Juris Doctor from Yale University, and Master of Public Administration degree from Harvard University. In addition, he holds 20 honorary doctoral degrees, including a Doctor of Laws from his alma mater, Columbia University. Trachtenberg and his wife, Francine Zorn Trachtenberg, have two sons and four grandchildren.
Wayne H. Valis is the founder and president of Valis Associates, an independent public policy consulting and advocacy company, working with trade and professional associations, corporations, public interest groups, the White House, Executive Branch agencies, and Members of Congress to create and manage coalition efforts on the environment, expanded international trade, and regulatory process streamlining.
Mr. Valis has an unsurpassed knowledge of the inner workings of the White House and U.S. Executive Branch. Prior to founding Valis Associates in 1983, Valis personally served three U.S. Presidents: Nixon, Ford, and Reagan. From 1981-83, he served as Special Assistant to President Reagan for liaison with business, working on the Economic Recovery Program. In addition, he assisted then-Vice President George Bush on regulatory reform issues.
From 1973-74, Valis was Staff Assistant to President Nixon, working first on the Domestic Policy Council and later with the Watergate defense team. From 1974-77, he was Director of Planning and Research, Office of Public Liaison, for President Ford.
Prior to 1972, Valis was the editor of The Intercollegiate Review, a scholarly journal published by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI) in Wilmington, Delaware. In 1984, he was elected to ISI’s Board of Trustees, and served as Vice Chairman of the Board and Chairman of its Finance Committee.
Additionally, Valis has written numerous articles and reviews as well as two books, The Future under President Reagan and The Lincoln Magna Carta: an Icon of Freedom for the Twenty First Century.
Ms. Verstandig is currently the executive vice president at the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace whose primary objective focuses on ending the Arab-Israeli Conflict. Previously, Ms. Verstandig served as a senior advisor to the Public Programs Department at the Aspen Institute which included the Abu Dhabi Ideas Lab, a high-level international convening in the UAE of the next generation of leadership. She also served as chair, Aspen Institute Middle East Programs where Ms. Verstandig provided leadership, strategic vision and management for all aspects of the Middle East Programs and the Partners for a New Beginning, a public-private partnership.
Previously, Verstandig served as deputy assistant secretary of Near Eastern Affairs at the U.S. Department of State and served as member of the U.S. negotiation team tasked to reach a comprehensive agreement to end the Arab-Israeli conflict.
She is a longstanding member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Ms. Verstandig has provided leadership and experience in healthcare governance as chair of the Children’s National Medical Center Foundation Board, as well as the Board of Trustees of Children’s National Medical Center. She also serves on the Board of Trustees of the Center for Global Development and the University of Denver’s Korbel School of International Studies.
Ms. Verstandig is a graduate of Boston University and holds an Honorary Doctor of Laws from Seton Hill College.
Ms. Verstandig is married to Hon. Lee L Verstandig, and they have a son Grant, Founder and CEO of Rally Health.
Christine Vick serves as managing director for North Oak LLC. Her client experience includes a variety of industries ranging from agriculture to biotechnology and consumer products. She specializes in developing and implementing domestic and foreign government affairs strategies, assessing international political and economic risk, and facilitating commercial partnerships in emerging markets.
Ms. Vick has a strong personal interest in the People's Republic of China where she has traveled extensively since her first visit with former secretary of state Henry Kissinger in 1974. She has assisted a number of multinational corporations in achieving their business interests in China, as well as other countries and regions throughout the world. In addition, she closely follows trends in the U.S. Congress and in U.S. foreign policy, along with evolving political and economic undercurrents in foreign countries, to determine their impact on commercial activities in key global markets.
Ms. Vick's involvement in foreign affairs dates to 1971 when she began her service at the U.S. Department of State, commencing her work with Dr. Kissinger in 1973. In 1977, she accompanied Dr. Kissinger to the private sector and culminated her association with him as vice president of Kissinger Associates, headquartered in New York. Her work bridging the public and private sectors in the international arena continued upon her return to Washington, D.C. where she joined the law firm of Powell, Goldstein, Frazer & Murphy as senior policy advisor. Ms. Vick was a founding partner of the international consulting firm Andreae, Vick and Associates which merged with The Cohen Group in 2003. Ms. Vick served as senior advisor at The Cohen Group through October 2017.
Ms. Vick has served in a number of pro bono and congressionally appointed positions supporting study broad initiatives. She is a trustee emeritus of Gettysburg College. Currently, Ms. Vick serves as vice chair of the UNC Global Leadership Council at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, her alma mater, as a member of the International Advisory Council of the United States Institute of Peace, and as a member of the Advisory Board of the Jackson Hole Center for Global Affairs.
Robinson West is the managingdDirector of The Boston Consulting Group, Center for Energy Impact. He also serves as a senior advisor and non-resident affiliate for the Center for Strategic & International Studies, an independent bi-partisan research institute specializing in foreign policy and defense issues and international economies. The former chairman and founder of PFC Energy (1984-2013), West has advised chief executives of leading national and international oil and gas companies on corporate strategy, portfolio management, acquisitions, divestitures and investor relations.
Before founding PFC Energy in 1984, Mr. West served in the Reagan administration as assistant secretary of the Interior for Policy, Budget and Administration (1981-1983), with responsibility for U.S. offshore oil policy. His duties included preparation of the department's $6-billion budget and general administrative oversight of its 75,000 employees. He conceived and implemented the five-year Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) leasing schedule and managed the $14-billion per year OCS policy, the largest non-financial auction in the world at that time. Between 1977 and 1980, Mr. West was a first vice president of Blyth, Eastman, Dillon & Co., Inc., an investment banking firm. Prior to that, he served in the Ford administration as deputy assistant secretary of Defense for International Economic Affairs (1976-1977) and on the White House staff (1974-1976). In 1976, he received the Secretary of Defense Medal for Outstanding Civilian Service.
Mr. West has served on many government boards and commissions in several administrations. In 2003 and again in 2008, he was nominated by the President to be a director of the U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP) and was confirmed by the Senate. He served as chairman of the Board from 2004 until 2014 and is now chairman emeritus. He has served as vice chairman of the Secretary of Energy Advisory Board, as a trustee of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline Liability Fund, and as a member of the Chief of Naval Operations Executive Panel, the Industry Policy Advisory Committee on Multilateral Trade Negotiations and the National Advisory Committee on Handicapped Children. Currently, he is cochairman of the German Marshall Fund of the United States, as well as president of the Wyeth Foundation for American Art. Mr. West recently joined the Board of Directors of Repsol S.A., a global energy company based in Madrid. He is also a member of the National Petroleum Council and the Council on Foreign Relations. In addition, he is president of the Wyeth Foundation for American Art.
Mr. West received a B.A. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a J.D. from Temple University, and was admitted to the Pennsylvania Bar.
Nancy Zirkin is the executive vice president for the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, the nation’s oldest, largest and most diverse civil and human rights coalition, consisting of nearly 200 national organizations. While Zirkin officially joined the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights in 2002, she has been a part of its various lobby efforts, including task forces on education reform, hate crimes, affirmative action and judicial nominations, since the 1990s. During the mid-1970s, Zirkin worked at several public interest organizations, including Common Cause and the Women's Equity Action League, but gained significant experience at the American Association of University Women (AAUW) where she became director of public policy and government relations. She distinguished herself there by rising to chief lobbyist and managing the coordination of the Equal Rights Amendment, Women's Vote Project and Civil Rights Act of 1991. Under Zirkin's leadership, along with Wade Henderson, president of LCCR, and Karen McGill Lawson, president of LCCREF, LCCR has grown to nearly four times its originally 10-person size, creating the infrastructure necessary to support the organization's growing institutional needs.