• Tuesday, May 15, 2018 10:03 AM | Anonymous

    May 14, 2018

    WACA Weekly

    This Week: Join Cover to Cover with Michael McFaul; Spring Leadership and Board Meetings; Final Call to Vote for National Board Slate; International Relations Council Hosts Ambassador of the Czech Republic; Work at WorldBoston; Council Highlights

    TOMORROW: Michael McFaul on Cover to Cover

    When Michael McFaul was asked to leave his perch at Stanford and join an unlikely presidential campaign in 2008, he had no idea that he would find himself at the beating heart of one of today’s most contentious and consequential international relationships. As President Obama’s adviser on Russian affairs, McFaul helped craft the U.S. policy known as “reset” that fostered unprecedented collaboration between the two countries. Then, as U.S. Ambassador to Russia (2012-2014), he had a front-row seat when this fleeting, hopeful moment crumbled with Vladimir Putin’s return to the presidency.

    From Cold War to Hot Peace is a riveting inside account that combines history and memoir to tell the full story of U.S.-Russia relations from the fall of the Soviet Union to the new rise of the hostile, paranoid Russian president.

    Join the May Cover to Cover conference call to discuss McFaul's new book, From Cold War to Hot Peace: An American Ambassador in Putin's Russia, on Tuesday, May 15 from 2:00-2:30 PM ET.

    Register today

    Stratfor's Reva Goujon to Speak at Leadership Meeting Dinner: Where U.S. Trade Policy and Grand Strategy Intersect

    Reva Goujon, Vice President of Global Analysis at Stratfor, will keynote a special dinner at San Antonio's Club Giraud on Friday, May 18 from 6:00-9:00 pm, following the leadership workshop sessions.

    The meetings will open with an installment of WAC San Antonio's Distinguished Speaker Series, "San Antonio’s First 300 Years: From Spanish Colony to Modern City," on Thursday, May 17 at 5:30 pm.

    The WACA Board meets Saturday, May 19 from 9:00 am - 12:00 pm.

    See May 17-18 Agenda

    Reva Goujon

    VP of Global Analysis

    Stratfor

    Council Leaders: Please Vote by May 18


    New WACA National Board terms will commence July 1 (a term is three years).

    According to the bylaws, one authorized representative of each member organization may vote YEA or NAY on the nominees for the WACA National Board. See bios.

    Please respond by email vote to Chelsea Beaulieu at cbeaulieu@worldaffairscouncils.org no later than close of business on Friday, May 18.

    With the start of our new fiscal year on July 1, 2018, WACA National Board Committees will be recomposed. The Nominating Committee will announce an official call for nominations to the board in early September. Please begin now to consider the strongest Supporting (corporate and institutional) and Council candidates for the WACA National Board, with terms to start in July 2019. 

    CANDIDATES ELECTION (JULY 2018-JUNE 2021 TERM):

    BOARD CANDIDATES (Supporting Member Nominees):

    Carlos Alvarez, CEO, The Gambrinus Company (TX)

    Alex Lari, CEO, The Claremont Group (NY) 

    BOARD CANDIDATES (Council Rep Nominees):

    Joan Lemoine, immediate past Executive Director, WAC Hilton Head

    Derrick Olsen, President, WorldOregon

    Incumbent Supporting Member Nominee (second 3-year term):

    Forough Hosseini, Senior Vice President, Information Systems, ICI Homes, Inc. (FL) 

    Incumbent Council Rep Nominees (second 3-year term):

    Craig Snyder, President and CEO, WAC Philadelphia 

    Xiao Yin Zhao, Executive Director, WAC Kentucky and Southern Indiana

    International Relations Council (Kansas City) to Host H.E. Kmoníček

    International Relations Council hosts H.E. Hynek Kmoníček, Ambassador of the Czech Republic to the U.S., and Ladislava Begeç Consul General of Slovakia in New York, Wednesday, May 14, for "100th Anniversary of the Pittsburgh Agreement."

    The Pittsburgh Agreement established Czechoslovakia as an independent nation after WWI in the wake of the dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

    See more

    WorldBoston Is Hiring!

    WorldBoston is hiring a manager of operations and global education programs!

    Apply today!

    Request for Proposals: Meridian International Center U.S. Exchange Alumni Network and Capacity Building Program

    Meridian International Center is seeking proposal partners for the FY2018 U.S. Exchange Alumni Network and Capacity Building Program. This program seeks to expand engagement with American citizen alumni by offering professional development seminars and accompanying career events in different regions of the U.S., focusing on professional networks, capacity building, and job-skills training.

    Selected partner organizations will be responsible for the following:

    ·     In collaboration with Meridian, design one- to two-day professional development seminars and career opportunities for approximately 40-200 U.S. citizen alumni of USG-funded exchange programs;

    ·     Identify speakers, trainers, and local business contacts to participate in the professional development seminars and follow-on activities;

    ·     Assist Meridian to execute a communications strategy in order to drive event recruitment and media coverage.

    Deadline for applications: Friday, May 18.

    More information



  • Wednesday, May 09, 2018 1:49 PM | Anonymous

    May 9, 2018

    Weekly World News Update

    U.S. Leaves Iran Deal; Haspel CIA Controversy; U.S.-North Korea Relations; Armenia's New PM; Malaysia Votes; Global Health

    Quote of the Week

    "The Iranian nuclear deal is defective at its core."

    -- U.S. President Donald Trump, in a speech Tuesday announcing the U.S. withdrawal from the deal.

    "We will begin again with the enrichment of uranium at an industrial level without limits."

    -- Iran's President Hassan Rouhani, in a speech in reply to the U.S. decision.

    "Walking away from the JCPOA turns our back on America’s closest allies, and an agreement that our country’s leading diplomats, scientists, and intelligence professionals negotiated. In a democracy, there will always be changes in policies and priorities from one Administration to the next. But the consistent flouting of agreements that our country is a party to risks eroding America’s credibility, and puts us at odds with the world’s major powers."

    -- President Barack Obama, in a statement released in response to the Trump Administration's move.

    U.S. Drops the Iran Nuclear Deal

    "Trump Withdraws U.S. from the Iran Nuclear Deal. What You Need to Know" Jon Greenberg; John Kruzel; Amy Sherman -- PolitiFact, May 8, 2018

    "Trump Dumps Iran Deal - Hallelujah!" Andrew C. McCarthy -- National Review, May 8, 2018

    "Trump Destroys the Iran Deal - and a Lot More" Robin Wright -- The New Yorker, May 8, 2018

    "Europeans Scramble to Save Iran Nuclear Deal, but Face New Concerns Over U.S. Sanctions" James McAuley -- The Washington Post, May 9, 2018

    "The Challenge of Reinstating Sanctions Against Iran" Peter Harrell -- Foreign Affairs, May 4, 2018

    Controversy Over Haspel for CIA

    "Bipartisan Group of 115 Retired and Former Career Ambassadors Warn Senate that Confirming Haspel Would Undercut the Work of Diplomats Around the World" Editorial Board -- Human Rights First, May 9, 2018

    "Why Intelligence Pros Have Swung Behind the CIA's Gina Haspel" Gerald F. Seib -- The Wall Street Journal, May 7, 2018

    Warming U.S.-North Korea Relations?

    "Trump's First Breakthrough in North Korea Negotiations" Krishnadev Calamur -- The Atlantic, May 9, 2018

    "Kim Jong Un Is Playing America and China" Doug Bandow -- The National Interest, May 8, 2018

    "Make North Korea's Test Pause Permanent" Jon Wolfsthal -- 38 North, May 7, 2018

    Armenia's New Prime Minister

    "He Was a Protester a Month Ago. Now, Nikol Pashinyan Leads Armenia" Neil MacFarquhar -- The New York Times, May 8, 2018

    "How Russia Played Silent Kingmaker in Armenia's Revolution" Margarita Antidze -- Reuters, May 8, 2018

    Malaysia Goes to the Polls

    "Malaysia's Unappetizing Choice" James Crabtree -- Nikkei Asian Review, May 8, 2018

    "What Is Wrong with Malaysia?" Umapagan Ampikaipakan -- The New York Times, May 7, 2018

    "'Queen of Dragons': The Inside Story of Malaysia's Election Fixer" Peter Guest -- Wired, May 9, 2018

    Global Health News

    "Ebola Returns Just as Trump Asks to Rescind Ebola Funds" Ed Yong -- The Atlantic, May 9, 2018

    "Bringing Gender Equality to Global Public Health" Helen Clark and Sania Nishtar -- Project Syndicate, May 8, 2018

  • Tuesday, May 08, 2018 10:24 AM | Anonymous

    May 7, 2018

    WACA Weekly

    This Week: Complete the Council Survey; Register for Spring Leadership and Board Meetings; Pakistan's Ambassador at Dallas/Fort Worth; Charlotte Hosts World Citizen Award Dinner; Council Highlights

    WACA Council Survey to Close on Friday, May 11

    WACA has been conducting a Council Benchmarking Survey in conjunction with WACA's annual membership dues renewal. While almost all of you have submitted your dues (thank you!), we would also like to achieve full participation in the survey.

    The survey's objective is to gather data about local Council size and resources, programming, and marketing. Please only fill out one survey per Council. We plan to release the survey results at the Spring Leadership Meeting in San Antonio on May 18, and we will also provide them in a newsletter.

    Council leaders: Please be sure to complete our Council Survey by Friday, May 11.

    Take the survey

    Stratfor's Reva Goujon to Speak at Leadership Meeting Dinner:

    Where U.S. Trade Policy and Grand Strategy Intersect

    Registration for the May 17-18 Council Leadership Meeting is now open! Please be sure to sign up even if you have already reserved your hotel room.

    Register for May 17-18 Meeting

    Reva Goujon, Vice President of Global Analysis at Stratfor, will keynote a special dinner at San Antonio's Club Giraud on Friday, May 18 from 6:00-9:00 pm, following the leadership workshop sessions.

    WACA President Bill Clifford will host a conference call to brief Meeting participants on the full agenda and clarify topics for the popular breakout sessions. We want your input! Please sign up for the call - indicate your preference for Wednesday, 5/9 or Thursday, 5/10 at 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm ET - using this Doodle poll below. Be sure to respond to the poll by 12:00 pm ET tomorrow (Tuesday).

    Sign up for Doodle poll

    The meetings will open with an installment of WAC San Antonio's Distinguished Speaker Series, "San Antonio’s First 300 Years: From Spanish Colony to Modern City," on Thursday, May 17 at 5:30 pm.

    The WACA Board meets Saturday, May 19 from 9:00 am - 12:00 pm.

    Reva Goujon

    VP of Global Analysis

    Stratfor

    Next Week: Michael McFaul on Cover to Cover

    When Michael McFaul was asked to leave his perch at Stanford and join an unlikely presidential campaign in 2008, he had no idea that he would find himself at the beating heart of one of today’s most contentious and consequential international relationships. As President Obama’s adviser on Russian affairs, McFaul helped craft the U.S. policy known as “reset” that fostered unprecedented collaboration between the two countries. Then, as U.S. Ambassador to Russia (2012-2014), he had a front-row seat when this fleeting, hopeful moment crumbled with Vladimir Putin’s return to the presidency.

    From Cold War to Hot Peace is a riveting inside account that combines history and memoir to tell the full story of U.S.-Russia relations from the fall of the Soviet Union to the new rise of the hostile, paranoid Russian president.

    Join the May Cover to Cover conference call to discuss McFaul's new book, From Cold War to Hot Peace: An American Ambassador in Putin's Russia, on Tuesday, May 15, at 2:00-2:30 PM ET.

    Register today

    Council Leaders: Please Vote by May 18

    New WACA National Board terms will commence July 1 (a term is three years).

    According to the bylaws, one authorized representative of each member organization may vote YEA or NAY on the nominees for the WACA National Board. See bios.

    Please respond by email vote to Chelsea Beaulieu at cbeaulieu@worldaffairscouncils.org no later than close of business on Friday, May 18.

    With the start of our new fiscal year on July 1, 2018, WACA National Board Committees will be recomposed. The Nominating Committee will announce an official call for nominations to the board in early September. Please begin now to consider the strongest Supporting (corporate and institutional) and Council candidates for the WACA National Board, with terms to start in July 2019. 

    CANDIDATES ELECTION (JULY 2018-JUNE 2021 TERM):

    BOARD CANDIDATES (Supporting Member Nominees):

    Carlos Alvarez, CEO, The Gambrinus Company (TX)

    Alex Lari, CEO, The Claremont Group (NY) 

    BOARD CANDIDATES (Council Rep Nominees):

    Joan Lemoine, immediate past Executive Director, WAC Hilton Head

    Derrick Olsen, President, WorldOregon

    Incumbent Supporting Member Nominee (second 3-year term):

    Forough Hosseini, Senior Vice President, Information Systems, ICI Homes, Inc. (FL) 

    Incumbent Council Rep Nominees (second 3-year term):

    Craig Snyder, President and CEO, WAC Philadelphia 

    Xiao Yin Zhao, Executive Director, WAC Kentucky and Southern Indiana

    Request for Proposals: Meridian International Center U.S. Exchange Alumni Network and Capacity Building Program

    Meridian International Center is seeking proposal partners for the FY2018 U.S. Exchange Alumni Network and Capacity Building Program. This program seeks to expand engagement with American citizen alumni by offering professional development seminars and accompanying career events in different regions of the U.S., focusing on professional networks, capacity building, and job-skills training.

    Selected partner organizations will be responsible for the following:

    ·     In collaboration with Meridian, design one- to two-day professional development seminars and career opportunities for approximately 40-200 U.S. citizen alumni of USG-funded exchange programs;

    ·     Identify speakers, trainers, and local business contacts to participate in the professional development seminars and follow-on activities;

    ·     Assist Meridian to execute a communications strategy in order to drive event recruitment and media coverage.

    Learn more: Friday, May 11 conference call with Gretchen Ehle, VP of GlobalConnect at Meridian.

    Deadline for applications: Friday, May 18.

    More information

    World Affairs Council of Dallas/Fort Worth Hosts Pakistan's Ambassador

    World Affairs Council of Dallas/Fort Worth hosts H.E. Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry, Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan to the U.S., today, May 7, for "Pakistan-U.S. Bilateral Relations."

    A member of the Foreign Service of Pakistan with 36 years of bilateral and multilateral experience, H.E. Chaudhry has served as Ambassador of Pakistan to the U.S. since March 2017.

    World Affairs Council of Charlotte to Hold World Citizen Award Dinner

    Since 1990, the World Affairs Council of Charlotte has presented its World Citizen Award annually to prominent citizens who have enhanced their community’s standing in the world, honoring their accomplishments and contributions to the city, the region, and the international community.

    At this year's sold-out dinner on Tuesday, May 8, the World Affairs Council of Charlotte will present the 2018 World Citizen Award to Pat Rodgers, President and CEO of Rodgers Builders.


  • Thursday, May 03, 2018 8:43 AM | Anonymous

    May 2, 2018

    Weekly World News Update

    New Hope for Koreas; Iran Nuclear Deal; Armenian Unrest; U.S.-Europe Trade Tensions; Biological Attacks

    Quote of the Week

    "This is not the way that diplomacy has to work. It doesn’t have to be leadership by tweet."

    -- Ronan Farrow, journalist, in an interview with PBS NewsHour about his new book, War on Peace: The End of Diplomacy and the Decline of American Influence, on Tuesday.

    A New Hope for the Koreas

    "A Real Path to Peace on the Korean Peninsula" Chung-in Moon -- Foreign Affairs, April 30, 2018

    "Reasons to Be Hopeful, and not Hopeful, About North Korea" Michael Brendan Dougherty -- National Review, May 1, 2018

    "From 'Fire and Fury' to Peace Prize? Some Talk of Nobel Award for Trump on North Korea" Anne Gearan and Ashley Parker -- The Washington Post, May 1, 2018

    "What Kim Jong Un Wants from Trump" Van Jackson -- Politico, April 30, 2018

    "Here's Why North Korea Will Give Up Its Nuclear Weapons" Gordon G. Chang -- The National Interest, April 30, 2018

    End of the Line for the Iran Nuclear Deal?

    "Benjamin Netanyahu's Nuclear Nothingburger" Steven Simon -- The New York Times, May 1, 2018

    "Binyamin Netanyahu Tries to Convince Donald Trump to Scuttle the Iran Deal" Editorial Baord -- The Economist, May 1, 2018

    "Why Is Netanyahu So Obsessed with Iran?" Richard Silverstein and Muhammad Sahimi -- Middle East Eye, May 2, 2018

    "Israel and the U.S Have Little to Gain from Trump Scrapping Iran Nuclear Deal" Zvi Bar'el -- Haaretz, May 2, 2018

    "The Iran Regime-Change Crew Is Back" Vali Nasr -- The Atlantic, April 25, 2018

    Unrest in Armenia

    "Armenia's Bad Week for Autocrats" Viken Berberian -- The New York Review of Books, May 1, 2018

    "What's Next for Armenia's Protest Movement?" Anna Ohanyan -- Al Jazeera, May 1, 2018

    U.S-Europe Trade Tensions

    "The U.S. and Europe Are Locked in a Standoff Over Tariffs" Zeeshan Aleem -- Vox, May 1, 2018

    "Europe Is Annoyed, not Grateful, After Trump Delays Tariffs" Jack Ewing -- The New York Times, May 1, 2018

    "What You Need to Know About the EU-U.S. Trade Spat" Emre Peker -- The Wall Street Journal, May 1, 2018

    "What Is Donald Trump's Trade Policy? Nobody Knows" John Cassidy -- The New Yorker, May 1, 2018

    Preparing for Biological Attacks

    "The New Killer Pathogens" Kate Charlet -- Foreign Affairs, May/June, 2018

    "Are We Prepared for a Killer Flu Epidemic?" Michaeleen Doucleff -- NPR, April 27, 2018

  • Wednesday, May 02, 2018 1:48 PM | Anonymous

    May 1, 2018

    May Newsletter

    This Month: Spring Leadership Meeting; Top AWQ Teams; Future of Korea Grant Awards; Council of the Month; Global I.Q. Minute; Council Opportunities and Highlights

    Spring Leadership and Board Meetings Hotel Block Ends Wednesday, May 2

    WAC San Antonio logo

    Book your room

    This year's Spring Leadership and Board Meetings will be held in partnership with the World Affairs Council of San AntonioMay 17-19

    The meetings will open with an installment of WAC San Antonio's Distinguished Speaker Series on Thursday, May 17 at 5:30 pm CT: San Antonio’s First 300 Years: From Spanish Colony to Modern City

    On Friday, May 18, following professional development workshops, WACA will host a dinner with a VIP speaker.

    The WACA Board meets Saturday, May 19 from 9:00 am - 12:00 pm.

    Hotel Block

    We have extended our hotel block at Hotel Valencia. We are offering a rate of $169/night. The block will now close Wednesday, May 2 at 5:00 pm CTBook your room today!

    *Registration and agendas coming soon. ($50; free for 1918 Society members and Council leaders who renewed membership by the deadline)

    Academic WorldQuest 2018 National Competition

    A heartfelt thank you to all students, teachers, parents, and other participants who made the Carlos and Malu Alvarez 2018 Academic WorldQuest National Competition a wonderful success!

    Special thanks also to all of our sponsors, including the United States Institute of Peace, which held a welcome reception for all Academic WorldQuest attendees. Read the WACA press release.

    Congratulations to the winning teams:

    2018 Champions: Plano West Senior High School - World Affairs Council of Dallas/Forth Worth

    Grand prize: Microsoft Surface Books 2

    2nd: Palm Desert High School - World Affairs Council of the Desert

    3rd: Indian Hill High School - World Affairs Council of Cincinnati & Northern Kentucky

    4th: Thornton Academy - World Affairs Council of Maine

    5th: Davidson Academy - Northern Nevada International Center

    6th: duPont Manual High School - World Affairs Council of Kentucky and Southern Indiana

    7th: Liberal Arts and Sciences Academy - World Affairs Council of Austin

    8th: Keystone School - World Affairs Council of San Antonio

    9th: Canyon Crest Academy - San Diego World Affairs Council

    10th: Clements High School - World Affairs Council of Greater Houston

    Scores will be sent to all 45 teams soon.

    Keynote speaker: Nabil Kapasi, Academic WorldQuest National Competition alumnus and sophomore at Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service. See his speech about the Academic WorldQuest experience and attending university in our nation's capital. Watch now.

    Academic WorldQuest 2018 Keynote Speech: Nabil Kapasi

    The Carlos and Malú Alvarez Academic WorldQuest 2018 National Competition would not be possible without the hard work and dedication of students, teachers, parents, chaperones, and all World Affairs Council staff and volunteers across the country. Thank you for helping make the competition a great success!

    Thank you to our generous sponsors!


    May Cover to Cover with Michael McFaul:

    From Cold War to Hot Peace

    In 2008, when Michael McFaul was asked to leave his perch at Stanford and join an unlikely presidential campaign, he had no idea that he would find himself at the beating heart of one of today’s most contentious and consequential international relationships. As President Obama’s adviser on Russian affairs, McFaul helped craft the U.S. policy known as “reset” that fostered unprecedented collaboration between the two countries. Then, as U.S. Ambassador to Russia (2012-2014), he had a front-row seat when this fleeting, hopeful moment crumbled with Vladimir Putin’s return to the presidency.

    From Cold War to Hot Peace is a riveting inside account that combines history and memoir to tell the full story of U.S.-Russia relations from the fall of the Soviet Union to the new rise of the hostile, paranoid Russian president.

    Join the May Cover to Cover conference call to discuss McFaul's new book, From Cold War to Hot Peace: An American Ambassador in Putin's Russia, on Tuesday, May 15, at 2:00-2:30 PM ET.

    Register for May's Cover to Cover

    Council Leaders: Please Vote by May 18

    New WACA National Board terms will commence July 1 (a term is three years).

    According to the bylaws, one authorized representative of each member organization may vote YEA or NAY on the nominees for the WACA National Board. See bios.

    Please respond by email vote to Chelsea Beaulieu at cbeaulieu@worldaffairscouncils.org no later than close of business on Friday, May 18.

    With the start of our new fiscal year on July 1, 2018, WACA National Board Committees will be recomposed. The Nominating Committee will announce an official call for nominations to the board in early September. Please begin now to consider the strongest Supporting (corporate and institutional) and Council candidates for the WACA National Board, with terms to start in July 2019. 

    CANDIDATES ELECTION (JULY 2018-JUNE 2021 TERM):

    BOARD CANDIDATES (Supporting Member Nominees):

    Carlos Alvarez, CEO, The Gambrinus Company (TX)

    Alex Lari, CEO, The Claremont Group (NY) 

    BOARD CANDIDATES (Council Rep Nominees):

    Joan Lemoine, immediate past Executive Director, WAC Hilton Head

    Derrick Olsen, President, WorldOregon

    Incumbent Supporting Member Nominee (second 3-year term):

    Forough Hosseini, Senior Vice President, Information Systems, ICI Homes, Inc. (FL) 

    Incumbent Council Rep Nominees (second 3-year term):

    Craig Snyder, President and CEO, WAC Philadelphia 

    Xiao Yin Zhao, Executive Director, WAC Kentucky and Southern Indiana

    Announcing: Future of Korea 2018 Selected Councils

    Selected Councils:

    ·     Colorado Springs WAC/WorldDenver

    ·     Indiana Council on World Affairs

    ·     Peoria Area WAC

    ·     Santa Fe Council on International Relations

    ·     Utah Council on Citizen Diplomacy

    ·     WAC Charlotte

    ·     WAC Harrisburg

    ·     WAC New Hampshire

    The World Affairs Councils of America is pleased to announce selected Councils in our annual programming partnership with the Korea Economic Institute (KEI).

    KEI, in consultation with the Embassy of the Republic of Korea, the U.S. Department of State, and the World Affairs Councils of America, based its selection on a highly competitive application process. WACA will administer the grants for Future of Korea 2018 programs.

  • Tuesday, May 01, 2018 9:02 AM | Anonymous

    April 30, 2018

    Academic WorldQuest Recap and

    Spring Leadership and Board Meetings Updates

    As WACA finishes wrapping up another successful Academic WorldQuest National Competition, today's email will be concise and will include two major highlights from the National Office.

    We will send the full May newsletter tomorrow, May 1.

    Academic WorldQuest 2018 National Competition

    A heartfelt thank you to all students, teachers, parents, and other participants who made the Carlos and Malu Alvarez 2018 Academic WorldQuest National Competition a wonderful success!

    Special thanks also to all of our sponsors, including the United States Institute of Peace, which held a welcome reception for all Academic WorldQuest attendees. Read the WACA press release.

    We will be sending a survey and team scores to chaperones very soon!

    Congratulations to the winning teams:

    First place: Plano West Senior High School - World Affairs Council of Dallas/Forth Worth

    Second place: Palm Desert High School - World Affairs Council of the Desert

    Third place: Indian Hill High School - World Affairs Council of Cincinnati & Northern Kentucky

    Keynote speaker: Nabil Kapasi, Academic WorldQuest National Competition alum and sophomore at Georgetown University's School of International Service. See his speech about the Academic WorldQuest experience and attending university in our nation's capital. Watch now.

    Academic WorldQuest 2018 Keynote Speech: Nabil Kapasi

    United States Institute of Peace:

    WACA would like to additionally recognize Ambassador William Taylor, Executive Vice President of USIP, who made welcome remarks at the AWQ Reception at the United States Institute of Peace's iconic headquarters.

    Thank you to our Judges and Emcee:

    Emcee: Joyce Davis, World Affairs Council of Harrisburg

    Judge: Rich Crepage, WACA Advisory Council

    Judge: Maureen Korzik, World Affairs Council of Hilton Head

    Judge: Leslie Palmer, World Affairs Council of San Antonio

    The Carlos and Malú Alvarez Academic WorldQuest 2018 National Competition would not be possible without the hard work and dedication of students, teachers, parents, chaperones, and all World Affairs Council staff and volunteers across the country. Thank you for helping to make competition a great success!

    Thank you to our generous sponsors!

    WAC San Antonio logo

    Book your room

    Spring Leadership and Board Meetings Hotel Block Closes Wednesday, May 2

    This year's Spring Leadership and Board Meetings will be held in partnership with the World Affairs Council of San Antonio, May 17-19

    The meetings will open with an installment of WAC San Antonio's Distinguished Speaker Series on Thursday, May 17 at 5:30 pm CT:

    San Antonio’s First 300 Years: From Spanish Colony to Modern City

    Join the World Affairs Council of San Antonio and local historian Dr. Gilberto Hinojosa for a fascinating overview of San Antonio’s last 300 years, from its foundation as a Spanish outpost to its rise in the twentieth century.

    This event is held in conjunction with the World Affairs Councils of America’s Annual Spring Leadership Meeting.

    On Friday, May 18, following professional development workshops, WACA will host a dinner with a VIP speaker.

    The WACA Board meets Saturday, May 19 from 9:00 am - 12:00 pm.

    Hotel Block

    We have extended our hotel block at Hotel Valencia. We are offering a rate of $169/night. The block will now close Wednesday, May 2. Book your room today!

    *Registration and agendas coming soon. ($50; free for 1918 Society members and Council leaders who renewed membership by the deadline)


  • Thursday, April 26, 2018 1:20 PM | Anonymous

    April 26, 2018

    1918 Society Call

    ASG: Global Trade Update

    The World Affairs Councils of America is pleased to invite 1918 Society members to join Albright Stonebridge Group (ASG) for a conference call discussion on the state of global trade during this time of unprecedented uncertainty.

    The call will take place on Friday, April 27, at 10:30-11:15 am ET.

    ASG Chair Secretary Gutierrez and senior experts from ASG’s Latin America and East Asia and Pacific practices will share their insights on trade tensions between the U.S. and key partners, with a focus on how businesses will be impacted:

    What are the prospects and timeline for securing a renegotiated NAFTA? How will the upcoming presidential election in Mexico and U.S. midterms impact the agreement’s future?

    Will the U.S. and China reach an agreement to pull back from the brink of a full-blown trade war?

    Join the 1918 Society

    This invitation is exclusive to 1918 Society members. If you are interested in joining the 1918 Society, please contact Chelsea Beaulieu at 202-833-4557 or by email at cbeaulieu@worldaffairscouncils.org for more information.

    Featured speakers:

    Carlos M. Gutierrez, Chair, ASG

    Eric Altbach, Senior Vice President East Asia and Pacific Practice, ASG

    Antonio Ortiz-Mena, Senior Vice President, Latin America Practice, ASG

    Moderator: Lauren Bosma, Analyst, East Asia and Pacific Practice, ASG


  • Wednesday, April 25, 2018 3:56 PM | Anonymous

    April 25, 2018

    Weekly World News Update

    Trump-Macron Meeting; Koreas Summit; Democracy in Peril?; Erdogan's Authoritarianism; China-Taiwan Tensions; Cuba's New Era

    Quote of the Week

    "The United States, the country of the First Amendment, has fallen again in the Index under Donald Trump, this time two places to 45th. A media-bashing enthusiast, Trump has referred to reporters “enemies of the people,” the term once used by Joseph Stalin."

    -- Quote from Reporters Without Borders 2018 World Press Freedom Index, released today.

    Presidents Trump and Macron's Washington Summit

    "Mr. Macron Goes to Washington: Risks and Rewards of this Week's State Visit" Nicholas Dungan -- Atlantic Council, April 23, 2018

    "Why France Feels (Relatively) Comfortable with Trump's America" Paul Zajac -- The American Interest, April 23, 2018

    "Can France Be America's New Bridge to Europe?" Celia Belin -- Foreign Affairs, April 19, 2018

    "Europe's Last-Ditch Effort to Save the Iran Deal" Robert Malley and Colin Kahl -- The Atlantic, April 24, 2018

    "The Courage to Confront the United States: When Allies Must Say Tough Things" Jeffrey Rathke -- Center for Strategic and International Studies, April 23, 2018

    South and North Korea Prepare to Meet

    "Fear and Hope in South Korea on Eve of Summit with Kim Jong Un" Shoe Sang-Hun -- The New York Times, April 24, 2018

    "Impossible Dream? Unification Less of a Priority as Korean Leaders Prepare to Talk" Josh Smith -- U.S. News and World Report, April 25, 2018

    "South Koreans Take a Reality Check Ahead of Summit with North" Jonathan Cheng and Yun-hwan Chae -- The Wall Street Journal, April 25, 2018

    Death of Democracy?


    "The End of the Democratic Century" Yascha Mounk and Roberto Stefan Foa -- Foreign Affairs, May/June, 2018

    "Armenia's Democratic Triumph" Paul Stronski -- The Atlantic, April 24, 2018

    "How Emmanuel Macron Became the New Leader of the Free World" Will Marshall -- Politico, April 22, 2018

    "Poland's Ruling Law and Justice Party Is Doing Lasting Damage" Editorial Board -- The Economist, April 21, 2018

    Erdogan's Authoritarian Rule

    "Approaching Elections, Turkey's Erdogan Gives a Master Class in Dictatorship" Simon A. Waldman -- Haaretz, April 22, 2018

    "How President Erdogan Is Turning Turkey into Putin's Russia" Soner Cagaptay -- Time, April 24, 2018

    "Turkey's Snap Elections: Erdogan's Improvised Gambit" Aykan Erdemir -- War on the Rocks, April 21, 2018


    China-Taiwan Tensions Escalate

    "Taiwan's Democracy Is the Key Issue Facing China" Xuan Loc Doan -- Asia Times, April 24, 2018

    "What Would Taiwan Do if China Invaded?" Russell Hsiao -- The National Interest, April 24, 2018

    A New Era for Cuba?

    "More Black Officials in Cuba as Leadership Changes" Frances Robles and Azam Ahmed -- The New York Times, April 22, 2018

  • Tuesday, April 24, 2018 9:00 AM | Anonymous

    April 23, 2018

    WACA Weekly

    This Week: Preventing International Conflict on KNOW NOW; Academic WorldQuest 2018; Spring Leadership Meeting Updates; National Board Votes

    Register for the call

    TOMORROW: Preventing International Conflict on KNOW NOW

    Violent conflict is a common thread that runs throughout history and across all cultures. It disrupts local, national, and international communities, and results in war, displacement, and death.

    One strategy to address violent conflict is through a public health approach. The Violence Prevention and Restoration (PAR) Model, developed by the International Center for Compassionate Organizations (ICCO) explains how violence begins, spreads, and infects others like a thought-borne pathogen or virus. Understanding the origins of violence may help prevent it.

    WAC Kentucky and Southern Indiana's Xiao Yin Zhao hosts hosts Ari Cowan and Tony Belak, Director General and Associate Director of ICCO, to discuss how the proliferation of international conflict and violence can be prevented by utilizing the PAR Model. Read Ari Cowan's white paper on rethinking violence and join the call tomorrow, April 24, at 2:00-2:30 PM ET.

    Academic WorldQuest 2018 this Saturday!

    The Carlos and Malú Alvarez 2018 Academic WorldQuest National Competition program will be held at The National Press Club in Washington, DC on Saturday, April 28 from 8:00 AM - 12:00 PM.

    The AWQ program will once again feature a welcome reception at the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) on Friday, April 27 from 4:00-6:00 PM. Participants will have the opportunity to explore the many ways that the United States Institute of Peace works to prevent conflicts from turning to bloodshed and to end it when they do. This includes the opportunity to hear from Ambassador William Taylor, USIP’s Executive Vice President, and Maria Stephan, Director of Nonviolent Action Programs at the Institute.

    For topics, study guide, and other information about this year's competition, please click here.

    See program schedule

    Thank you to our generous sponsors!

    WAC San Antonio logo

    Book your room

    Spring Leadership Hotel Block Closes April 30!

    This year's Spring Leadership and Board Meetings will be held in partnership with the World Affairs Council of San Antonio, May 17-19

    The meetings will open with an installment of WAC San Antonio's Distinguished Speaker Series on Thursday, May 17 at 5:30 pm CT:

    San Antonio’s First 300 Years: From Spanish Colony to Modern City

    Join the World Affairs Council of San Antonio and local historian Dr. Gilberto Hinojosa for a fascinating overview of San Antonio’s last 300 years, from its foundation as a Spanish outpost to its rise in the twentieth century.

    This event is held in conjunction with the World Affairs Councils of America’s Annual Spring Leadership Meeting.

    On Friday, May 18, following professional development workshops on topics such as fundraising, endowments, and membership development, WACA will host a dinner with VIP speaker.

    The WACA Board meets Saturday, May 19 from 9:00 am-12:00 pm.

    Hotel Block

    Our hotel block at Hotel Valencia, offering a rate of $169/night, will close on Monday, April 30. Book your room today!

    *Registration and agendas coming soon. ($50; free for 1918 Society members)

    Council Leaders: Please Vote by May 18

    New WACA National Board terms will commence July 1 (a term is three years).

    According to the bylaws, one authorized representative of each member organization may vote YEA or NAY on the nominees for the WACA National Board. See bios.

    Please respond by email vote to Chelsea Beaulieu at cbeaulieu@worldaffairscouncils.org no later than close of business on Friday, May 18.

    With the start of our new fiscal year on July 1, 2018, WACA National Board Committees will be recomposed. The Nominating Committee will announce an official call for nominations to the board in early September. Please begin now to consider the strongest Supporting (corporate and institutional) and Council candidates for the WACA National Board, with terms to start in July 2019. 

    CANDIDATES ELECTION (JULY 2018-JUNE 2021 TERM):

    BOARD CANDIDATES (Supporting Member Nominees):

    Carlos Alvarez, CEO, The Gambrinus Company (TX)

    Alex Lari, CEO, The Claremont Group (NY) 

    BOARD CANDIDATES (Council Rep Nominees):

    Joan Lemoine, immediate past Executive Director, WAC Hilton Head

    Derrick Olsen, President, WorldOregon

    Incumbent Supporting Member Nominee (second 3-year term):

    Forough Hosseini, Senior Vice President, Information Systems, ICI Homes, Inc. (FL) 

    Incumbent Council Rep Nominees (second 3-year term):

    Craig Snyder, President and CEO, WAC Philadelphia 

    Xiao Yin Zhao, Executive Director, WAC Kentucky and Southern Indiana

    Listen to WACA Podcasts!

    On Wednesday, April 18, WACA hosted Madiha Afzal on Cover to Cover to discuss her new book, Pakistan Under Siege: Extremism, Society and the State.

    Listen now

    World Affairs Council of Seattle to Co-Sponsor Madeleine Albright Event

    Madeleine Albright, Chair of Albright Stonebridge Group and first female Secretary of State (1997-2001), will appear at a Seattle Theater Group event, co-sponsored by World Affairs Council of Seattle, on Tuesday, April 24.

    Albright also served as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations (1993-1997) and in 2012 was awarded the U.S. Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Barack Obama.

    Albright will discuss her new book, a New York Times #1 bestseller, Fascism: A Warning.

    San Diego World Affairs Council to Host Ambassador Ryan Crocker

    San Diego World Affairs Council will host Ambassador Ryan Crocker at its annual fundraising dinner on Friday, April 27.

    Crocker has served as US Ambassador six times: Afghanistan (2011-2012), Iraq (2007-2009), Pakistan (2004-2007), Syria (1998-2001), Kuwait (1994-1997), and Lebanon (1990-1993). Ambassador Crocker has received many of the nation’s highest honors, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Crocker currently serves as Diplomat-in-Residence at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University.

    Apply today

    WAC New Hampshire Is Hiring!

    World Affairs Council of New Hampshire is seeking an international visitor exchange program manager.


  • Monday, April 23, 2018 9:57 AM | Anonymous

    April 19, 2018

    Nominees for Election to the WACA National Board of Directors

    Please Vote by Email by Friday, May 18

    Dear Council Members and Supporting Members: 

    The WACA Nominating Committee, chaired by Sam Johnson, is pleased to present the nominees listed below for election to the WACA National Board of Directors. New Board terms will commence July 1 (a term is three years).

    According to the bylaws, one authorized representative of each member organization may vote YEA or NAY on the nominees for the WACA National Board.

    Please respond by email vote to Chelsea Beaulieu at cbeaulieu@worldaffairscouncils.org no later than close of business on Friday, May 18.

    With the start of our new fiscal year on July 1, 2018, WACA National Board Committees will be recomposed. The Nominating Committee will announce an official call for nominations to the board in early September. Please begin now to consider the strongest Supporting (corporate and institutional) and Council candidates for the WACA National Board, with terms to start in July 2019. 

    CANDIDATES ELECTION (JULY 2018-JUNE 2021 TERM):

    BOARD CANDIDATES (Supporting Member Nominees):

    Carlos Alvarez, CEO, The Gambrinus Company (TX)

    Alex Lari, CEO, The Claremont Group (NY) 

    BOARD CANDIDATES (Council Rep Nominees):

    Joan Lemoine, immediate past Executive Director, WAC Hilton Head

    Derrick Olsen, President, WorldOregon

    Incumbent Supporting Member Nominee (second 3-year term):

    Forough Hosseini, Senior Vice President, Information Systems, ICI Homes, Inc. (FL) 

    Incumbent Council Rep Nominees (second 3-year term):

    Craig Snyder, President and CEO, WAC Philadelphia 

    Xiao Yin Zhao, Executive Director, WAC Kentucky and Southern Indiana

    The following board members are stepping down this year. We are grateful for their years of service to the WACA National Board. They are eligible to be renominated to the Board after a one-year hiatus.  

    Sam Johnson, Chairman and CEO, Johnson + Sterling (AL) 

    Noel Lateef, President, Foreign Policy Association (NY)

    Don Samford, past President, Peoria Area World Affairs Council (IL)



 

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