Upcoming Speakers

David Stoll

Monday, September 23, 2019

Topic: Migration from Guatemala to the US

David Stoll has worked with indigenous communities in Guatemala since the 1980s.  In his most recent book, El Norte or Bust! How Migration Fever and Microcredit Produced a Financial Crash in a Latin American Town (Rowman & Littlefield, 2012), he describes how migration actually impoverishes many rural Guatemalans because they take on unmanageable debt to finance the trip north.  He has written about Central American migration for The Wall Street Journal, Miami Herald and The American Interest.  His earlier books include Is Latin America Turning Protestant? (University of California Press, 1991), Between Two Armies in the Ixil Towns of Guatemala (Columbia University Press, 1993), and Rigoberta Menchú and the Story of All Poor Guatemalans (Westview Press, 2007).  Stoll received his bachelor’s degree in anthropology from the University of Michigan and his PhD from Stanford University. For the past 22 years, he has taught at Middlebury College in Vermont.

Courtney C. Radsch

Monday, October 14, 2019

Topic: Enemies of the People: the Shifting Frontlines of Journalism

Courtney C. Radsch, PhD, is advocacy director at the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ).  She serves as chief spokesperson on global press freedom issues for the organization and oversees CPJ’s engagement with the United Nations, the Internet Governance Forum, and other multilateral institutions as well as CPJ’s campaigns on behalf of journalists killed and imprisoned for their work.  As a veteran journalist, researcher, and free expression advocate, she frequently writes and speaks about the intersection of media, technology, and human rights.  Her book Cyberactivism and Citizen Journalism in Egypt: Digital Dissidence and Political Change was published in 2016.

Prior to joining CPJ, Radsch worked for UNESCO, edited the flagship publication “World Trends in Freedom of Expression and Media Development,” and managed the Global Freedom of Expression Campaign at Freedom House.  She has worked as a journalist in the United States and Middle East with Al-Arabiya, the Daily Star, and The New York Times.  Radsch holds a PhD in international relations from American University.  She speaks Arabic, French, and Spanish.

Ambassador Douglas A. Silliman

Monday, November 4, 2019

Topic: Iraq after ISIS: Caught between the United States and Iran

Ambassador Douglas A. Silliman is president of the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington. He retired from the Foreign Service in April 2019 after 35 years.  He served as U.S. ambassador to Iraq from 2016-19 and U.S. ambassador to Kuwait from 2014-16.  From 2013-14, he served as a senior advisor in the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs in the U.S. Department of State, working on Iraq issues and the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit.

Silliman was deputy chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in Iraq from 2012-13, minister counselor for political affairs in Baghdad from 2011-12, and deputy chief of mission in Ankara, Turkey from 2008-11. His other State Department positions include:  director of the Department of State’s Office of Southern European Affairs, political counselor at the U.S. Embassy in Jordan, and the regional officer for the Middle East in the Office of the Coordinator for Counterterrorism.

In 2018, Silliman received the Presidential Distinguished Service Award from President Donald J. Trump. He has received numerous awards from the Department of State, including the Secretary’s Award for Public Outreach in 2007 and senior performance awards.  Silliman received the Sinclaire Language Award in 1993 and the W. Averell Harriman Award for outstanding junior officer in 1988 from the American Foreign Service Association.

In addition to his position as president of AGSIW, Silliman serves on the board of advisors of the Bilateral US-Arab Chamber of Commerce, which helps American businesses expand their international business and trade ties, especially in the Middle East and Gulf region.

Silliman received a Bachelor of Arts in political science, summa cum laude, from Baylor University in Texas, where he was also a member of Phi Beta Kappa. He earned a Master of Arts in international relations from the George Washington University. He speaks Arabic and French.

 

Paul Mayewski

Monday, December 16, 2019

Topic: Topic: Maine and Arctic Climate Change

Dr. Paul Andrew Mayewski is Director of the Climate Change Institute and Distinguished Professor in the School of Earth and Climate Sciences, School of Marine Sciences, School of Policy and International Affairs, the Business School, and the Center for Ocean and Coastal Law (Law School) at the University of Maine. He has led more than 55 expeditions to some of the remotest polar and high altitude reaches of the planet (eg., Antarctica, Greenland, Himalayas, Tibet, Andes, sub-Antarctic Islands); has more than 430 scientific publications; received numerous honors including: the first internationally awarded Medal for Excellence in Antarctic Research, the Explorers Club Lowell Thomas Medal, honorary PhD from Stockholm University, honorary fellow in the American Polar Society, and fellow in the American Geophysical Union, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Explorers Club; developed and led major international and national climate change research programs in Antarctica, Greenland, Asia and New England; worked with outreach entities such as the American Museum of Natural History and Boston Museum of Science; released two popular books; and has appeared hundreds of times in the media including multiple CBS 60 Minutes broadcasts, several NOVA films, NPR pieces and the 2014 Emmy Award winner “Years of Living Dangerously”.

Shuja Nawaz

Monday, March 9, 2020

Topic: Pakistan

Shuja Nawaz is a political and strategic analyst.  He is a Distinguished Fellow, South Asia Center at the Atlantic Council In Washington DC.  Mr. Nawaz writes for leading newspapers and The Huffington Post, and speaks on current topics before civic groups, at think tanks, and on radio and television.   He has worked on projects with RAND, the United States Institute of Peace, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the Atlantic Council, and other leading think tanks on projects dealing with Pakistan and the Middle East.  In January 2009 he was made the first Director of the South Asia Center at The Atlantic Council of the United States.

Mr. Nawaz was educated at Gordon College, Rawalpindi, where he obtained a BA in Economics and English literature, and at the Graduate School of Journalism of Columbia University in New York, where he was a Cabot Fellow and won the Henry Taylor International Correspondent Award.  He was a newscaster and news and current affairs producer for Pakistan Television from 1967 to 1972 and covered the western front of the 1971 war between Pakistan and India as well as President Zulfikar Ali Bhutto’s visit to China January-February 1972.

Mr. Nawaz has worked for the New York Times, the World Health Organization, and has headed three separate divisions at the International Monetary Fund (IMF).  He was also a director at the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna from 1999 to 2001, while on leave from the IMF.  Mr. Nawaz was the managing editor and then Editor of Finance & Development, the multilingual quarterly of the IMF and the World Bank. He served on the editorial advisory board of the World Bank Research Observer.

Mr. Nawaz’s latest book, The Battle for Pakistan:  The Bitter US Friendship and a Tough Neighbourhood, will be published under the Vintage imprint and release in August 2019.  He also is the author of Crossed Swords: Pakistan, its Army, and the Wars Within (Oxford University Press 2nd edition 2017).  He is the principal author of FATA: A Most Dangerous Place (CSIS, Washington DC January 2009), Pakistan in the Danger Zone: A Tenuous US-Pakistan Relationship (Atlantic Council 2010), Learning by Doing: The Pakistan Army’s Experience with Counterinsurgency (Atlantic Council 2011), and with Mohan Guruswamy and with a Foreword by former Secretary of State George Shultz, India-Pakistan: The Opportunity Cost of Conflict (Atlantic Council 2014).  His book of verse in English Journeys was published originally by Oxford University Press and re-issued by Fort Hill in 2017. His second book of verse The Inner World (Archway 2017) is also available on the web.

Upcoming Speakers

  • Monday, September 23, 2019
    David Stoll
    Topic: Migration from Guatemala to the US
  • Monday, October 14, 2019
    Courtney C. Radsch
    Topic: Enemies of the People: the Shifting Frontlines of Journalism
  • Monday, November 4, 2019
    Ambassador Douglas A. Silliman
    Topic: Iraq after ISIS: Caught between the United States and Iran
  • Monday, December 16, 2019
    Paul Mayewski
    Topic: Topic: Maine and Arctic Climate Change
  • Monday, March 9, 2020
    Shuja Nawaz
    Topic: Pakistan

Past Speakers