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Aslan Ali

TV Host and Journalist

Ali Aslan is a seasoned journalist and television host who has worked for global news networks such as CNN, ABC News, and Channel News Asia.

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Since 2012, he has been the host of the international talk show “Quadriga” on Deutsche Welle TV. In addition to his distinguished career in journalism, Aslan has also served for two terms as a policy and media advisor to the German government, including the Federal Foreign Office and the Federal Ministry of the Interior. Aslan holds a master’s of international affairs and a master’s of journalism from Columbia University. He received his bachelor’s in international politics from Georgetown University.

Asmar Eric

CEO, Happy Smala (Morocco)

Eric Asmar is the CEO of Happy Smala, a consulting firm and startup studio in Rabat, Morocco specialized in innovation and collaborative finance. Prior to this, he served as Director of Programs at the Moroccan Center for Innovation and Social Entrepreneurship, where he launched Dare Inc., Morocco’s first social enterprise incubator.

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His previous professional experiences include UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business and the International Labour Organization (ILO). He also collaborates with numerous startup support programs as a jury member, mentor, and trainer, and lectures on entrepreneurship at ESSEC Business School.

Astrid Bonfield Dr.

Chief Executive, The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust

Dr. Astrid Bonfield was appointed chief executive of The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust in June 2012. The purpose of the Trust is to enrich the lives and opportunities of Commonwealth citizens — across generations and geographical boundaries — in order to provide a lasting legacy for Her Majesty The Queen.

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Dr. Bonfield was director of the Zimbabwean NGO, Inter-Country Peoples’ Aid, and then a program development specialist at the Bernard van Leer Foundation in the Netherlands, focusing on HIV/AIDS and growing up in indigenous societies. In October 2005, she joined The Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fund as chief executive from the Aga Khan Foundation, where she was director of policy. Dr Bonfield was appointed as a board member for the Big Lottery Fund in October 2012, where she sits on both the U. K. Funding and International committees.

Atallah Rudolph

Nonresident Senior Fellow, Atlantic Council, USA

Retired Lieutenant Colonel of US Air Force, non resident Senior Fellow in the Atlantic Council’s Africa Center and CEO of White Mountain Research, a private firm providing tailored international security solutions to clients focused on Africa and the Middle East.

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Former advisor of the Secretary of Defense and senior US officials on African national security, counter-terrorism and cultural intelligence, he was an Air Force Defense Attaché accredited to six West African countries and Director of the Sub-Saharan Africa Orientation Course at the Joint Special Operations University.

Atallah Rudolph

Chief Executive Officer, White Mountain Research; Senior Fellow, Africa Center, Atlantic Council

Chief Executive Officer of White Mountain Research, a small Virginia-based business providing tailored international security solutions to clients focused on Africa and the Middle East. White Mountain Research partners with like-minded organizations to save lives and resettle persecuted families in the Middle East and around the world. He currently oversees the evacuation and rescue of persecuted religious minorities in Northern Iraq and Syria, and his team has funded and rebuilt homes in the region.    

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Before retiring in 2009 with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel after twenty-one years of service in the US Air Force, Atallah's military career included aviation, special operations, intelligence, and counterterrorism. In his last military posting, he served in the Office of the Secretary of Defense as Africa Counterterrorism Director (2003-09), while concurrently holding positions as East Africa Director (2003-07) and Country Director for Morocco and Tunisia (2007-09). He was Air Force Defense Attaché accredited to six West African countries; Director of the Sub-Saharan Africa Orientation Course at the Joint Special Operations University; and instructor pilot with over 4 000 flight hours, including combat flight time. A native of Beirut, Lebanon, fluent in Arabic and French, Atallah holds a Bachelor of science in Electrical and Biomedical Engineering from the University of Connecticut and a Master’s degree of science in International Relations from Troy University.

Atallah Rudolph

Nonresident Senior Fellow Atlantic Council

Rudolph Atallah is a nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council's Africa Center.

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Before retiring in 2009 with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel after twenty-one years of service in the US Air Force, Atallah's military career included aviation, special operations, intelligence, and counterterrorism. In his last military posting, he served in the Office of the Secretary of Defense as Africa Counterterrorism Director (2003-2009), while concurrently holding positions as East Africa Director (2003-2007) and Country Director for Morocco and Tunisia (2007-2009). Upon his retirement, Atallah was the only foreign area officer in the Air Force to hold three concurrent regional designations for Africa, the Middle East, and Europe. Atallah is Chief Executive Officer of White Mountain Research, a small Virginia-based business providing tailored international security solutions to clients focused on Africa and the Middle East.

Atilgan Canan

Director, Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung – KAS

Prior to this position in Tunis, she was heading the KAS’s Regional Program of Political Dialogue in the South Caucasus.

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She has worked for KAS since 2001 and has over 18 years of experience in program directorate in various countries (Palestine, Jordan, Thailand) with a focus on conflict resolution, democratization and transformation processes, geopolitics and regional security as well as EU Neighborhood Policy. She holds a PhD in political science.

Atta Mills Cadman

Co-Founder, John Evans Atta Mills Memorial Foundation; Former Senior Advisor to the President of Ghana

Former Senior Economic Advisor to the President of Ghana, his late brother John Atta Mills (2009-12) and successor John Dramani Mahama 2013-17. He was the Convener of Ghana's Economic Advisory Council, a member of the Board of Directors of the Ghana National Petroleum Company and Chairman of the Sino-Ghana Presidential Task Force which negotiated the $US 3 billion Chinese Infrastructure loan for Ghana. He led international negotiation missions and served as emissary to a number of African Heads of States.

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Dr. Atta Mills worked for the World Bank for over 20 years at various positions, and for 12 years as a lecturer in the UN African Institute for Development and Planning (IDEP). He is currently a consultant on investment, trade, and macroeconomic policy focusing on Sub-Saharan African countries and a blogger on the political economy of social change in Ghana. He is also a co-founder of the John Evans Atta Mills Memorial Foundation and a co-chair of the Board of Directors.

Augusto Castro Neves Luiz

Chairman, Board of Trustees, Brazilian Center for International Relations

Luiz Augusto de Castro Neves chairs the Board of Trustees at the Brazilian Center for International Relations (CEBRI).

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Castro Neves was a career diplomat starting in 1968, having served in Buenos Aires, London, Ottawa, and at the Organization of American States (OAS) in Washington, DC. He was ambassador of Brazil in Paraguay (2000-04), China (2004-08), and Japan (2008-10). He has taught at the Rio Branco Institute, the University of Brasilia, and the School of Post-Graduate Studies in Economics of Fundação Getúlio Vargas. He was also deputy chief of economic affairs in the National Security Council, executive secretary for strategic affairs of the presidency, and general secretary of the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He graduated from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ) and holds a master’s in economics from the University of London.

Avilés García Iraís

Head of Multilateral Cultural Cooperation, Ministry of Culture, Mexico

Iraís Avilés García is the Head of Multilateral Cultural Cooperation at the Mexican Ministry of Culture. She is an Internationalist with more of 11 years of expertise in international cultural cooperation and with wide knowledge of geo-policy and international global agenda, as well as cultural topics.

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She holds a Bachelor's Degree in International Relations and a Diploma in Public International Law, both from the National Autonomous University of Mexico. At present, she is working on his Master's degree in Cultural Management and Sustainable Development at Ortega y Gasset Institute Mexico. She is currently head of Multilateral Cultural Cooperation at the Ministry of Culture of Mexico. She also has worked at Mexican National Institute of Fine Arts as a Liaison of International Cooperation. She is interested in working on cultural issues and topics of international relevance and wish to continue further professional development in a global working context.

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