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August 2012


In this Issue
A Note from the President
News from the National Office
What's Happening in the Network
Share the Best: Practices
WACA Leadership Network
Available Authors
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A Note from our President

Dear Friends and Colleagues,


It has been an exciting month at the national office as we continue to work hard on putting together the 2012 National Conference and create interesting new programs for the network. Last week we announced confirmed speakers to date for the National Conference (you can view the announcement here if you missed it). Among those who will be joining us are our WACA National Board Chair Paula J. Dobriansky, Distinguished National Security Chair at the U.S. Naval Academy; Ambassador Ashok Kumar Mirpuri, Singapore's Ambassador to the United States; Ambassador Jo´┐Żo Vale de Almeida, Head of the Delegation of the European Union to the United States; and Congressman Chris Van Hollen. Check out the announcement for the full slate of confirmed speakers to date and keep an eye out for updates.

We recently announced a new Engage America Speaker Series with Diana Untermeyer, author of Qatar: Sand, Sea, and Sky. Mrs. Untermeyer lived in Qatar for two years while her husband, Chase, served as U.S. ambassador. The application period closes August 20, see below for further details.
I have been busy getting ready for a Leadership Mission to the People's Republic of China at the end of the month. I am off to Beijing, Ningxia, and Shanghai August 26 - September 1 with five delegates from our council network hosted by the Chinese People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries. Education is a big focus of the group and we are interested in learning about the national trends, priorities, and strategies of strengthening the Chinese education system. We will share information and lessons learned with the broader network. 

Fall is right around the corner and I am excited to hear about all of your upcoming programming. Please, if at any time the national office can help you, don't hesitate to send us an email or give us a call.

The next few months will be exciting and I am looking forward to continuing working with all of you to further our mission of educating Americans on the pressing global issues of our time.

Best regards,


S. Todd Culpepper
President & CEO
World Affairs Councils of America

News from the National Office
2012 National Conference

The World Affairs Councils of America has announced the Confirmed Speakers to date for the 2012 National Conference, U.S. National Security Policy: Six Top Issues for the President in 2013 (See announcement). The conference commences at a very exciting time in Washington: one day after the election on Wednesday, November 7. Join us November 7-9, 2012 at the historic Mayflower Hotel in Washington, DC for the launch of our network-wide discussion and analysis of the issues the President of the United States will face in 2013. Conference Flyer


The National Conference, held annually for over two decades, gathers our regional leaders drawn from the business, civic, and education communities. Leading policymakers and national security experts lead the discussion on the critical national security challenges before us and help our council leaders plan their programming for their local communities in the coming year.


Remember that in order to take advantage of early-bird registration rates, you must register by September 1.


Early-Bird Rates

$430 World Affairs Council CEO/Staff/Board Membe

$455 World Affairs Council Member ($495 after September 1)

$545 Non-Member 


Click Here to Register Now


Lodging at the Mayflower Hotel 

We have secured a special group rate at the Mayflower Hotel of $224/night. To book a room at this rate, click here or call 1-877-212-5752 and let the booking agent know you are with the "World Affairs Councils of America."  


Tentative Schedule 

Wednesday, November 7  

9:00am-5:00pm: Fall Leadership Meeting for Council CEOs, regional and national Board Members and Staff/Annual Membership Meeting


6:30pm-8:30pm: Opening Dinner


Thursday, November 8
9:00am-5:00pm: Main Plenaries


5:30pm-8:00pm: Embassy Receptions


Friday, November 9
7:30am-8:45am: 1918 Society Breakfast 


9:00am-3:00pm: Main Plenaries. Conference concludes at 3:00pm

Speaker Series with Diana Untermeyer

The World Affairs Councils of America, in collaboration with the Embassy of Qatar, is proud to announce an Engage America Speaker Series with Diana Untermeyer, author of Qatar: Sand, Sea, and Sky. The series will be offered for up to 30 World Affairs Councils across the country.


Mrs. Untermeyer lived in Doha, the bustling capital of Qatar, from 2004-2007 while her husband Chase served as U.S. ambassador. Qatar: Sand, Sea, and Sky gives an overview of Qatar's rich culture and history and documents its journey into modernity. Though small in size, Qatar's strategic location and natural gas wealth make it a rising economic and political power.


Breathtakingly illustrated by award-winning photographer Henry Dallal, Mrs. Untermeyer's personal narrative provides a unique perspective of this moderate Muslim country and the way it attempts to become modern and engaged with the world without losing its heritage.


Reminder to Councils: Applications are due COB August 20. The application can be downloaded here

Leadership Mission to China

The World Affairs Councils of America in partnership with The Chinese People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (CPAFFC) is hosting a Leadership Mission to the People's Republic of China August 26 - September 1, 2012. The five member delegation of World Affairs Councils representatives will visit Beijing and Shanghai during the seven day mission. China is one of WACA's Six Top Issues that will be highlighted at the 2012 National Conference in November. The delegation includes: 


Mr. Todd Culpepper - Head of Delegation

President & CEO, World Affairs Councils of America


Dr. Lori E. Murray

Director, WACA National Board


Mr. Michael Phillip

Director, WACA National Board

First Vice President, Merrill Lynch

Director, World Affairs Council of California Central Coast


Ms. Judith Rubinstein

Director, Naples Council on World Affairs


Mr. Nigel Sutton

VP of International Business Development, Raytheon International

Director, World Affairs Council - Washington, DC


Mr. Patrick Terrien

President & CEO, Columbus Council on World Affairs

Take the Facebook Challenge
In the run-up to our National Conference in November, WACA invites you all to answer a question from the 2012 National Academic WorldQuest Competition posted on our Facebook page every Monday and Thursday. All those who have correctly answered a question through September 13, 2012 will be entered into a lottery to win a free pass to our National Conference. All questions come from the 2012 AWQ Study Guide.

This week's category is the Middle East. Why not give Monday's question a shot? 


Which two countries originated the Arab Spring movement?


A. Egypt and Tunisia

B. Tunisia and Morocco

C. Morocco and Libya

D. Egypt and Libya



Academic WorldQuest 2012-2013

National Competition Date and Topics Announced

AWQ Logo

WACA announced that the 2012-2013 Academic WorldQuest Competition will take place Saturday, April 27, 2013 at Georgetown University. 


Academic WorldQuest 2012-2013 will mark the 11th Annual Academic WorldQuest, the World Affairs Councils of America's flagship education program for high school students on global issues. More Information  


The 2012-2013 Categories will focus on the Six Top National Security Issues for 2013 voted on by leaders of World Affairs Councils across the country, plus several more categories and will include the articles from Great Decisions.


2012-2013 Categories 

US Economic Competitiveness 

US Education:Competing Globally

US Energy Policy

Middle East 



UN Millennium Goals: Environmental Sustainability


Current Events

Cuban Missile Crisis: 50th Anniversary


A Teacher's Guide is available to help Councils reach out to schools and explain how to get involved in Academic WorldQuest. Teacher's Guide


Councils and teachers, keep an eye out for an announcement regarding the Academic WorldQuest 2012-2013 Study Guide in the coming weeks. 


EU Educational Outreach Program

in the United States 2012
The World Affairs Councils of America's EU Educational Outreach Program is underway. WACA is conducting this program in collaboration with the Delegation of the European Union to the United States and is working with 13 local World Affairs Councils to implement it in their communities as part of our Six Top National Security Issues programming - US Education: Competing Globally. The objective of the program is to engage American students and teachers on a personal level to deepen their understanding and knowledge of the European Union.


Materials for educators and presenters participating in the EU Educational Outreach Program are available. These materials are also available to any member of the network interested in learning more about Europe and the EU. More Information

WACs in the News

World Affairs Council - Washington, DC

World Affairs Council - Washington, DC hosted Senator Dianne Feinstein, Chairman on the Senate Select Committee for Intelligence, whose remarks to the Council at the National Press Club on July 23 drove the news cycle for three whole days. NPR was one of many outlets to cover the story. Read Here


World Affairs Council of Los Angeles

The Los Angeles Times covered Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner's recent talk hosted by the World Affairs Council of Los Angeles. Read Here


World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette highlights former President Bill Clinton's upcoming keynote speech at the One Young World Summit October 18-22. The article states, "Steve Sokol, president of the World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh, which helped bring the summit to the city, pointed to Mr. Clinton's work with his Clinton Global Initiative on issues such as global health and the environment." Read Here

World Affairs Council of New Hampshire
The Union Leader interviewed Peter Schmidt who recently returned from Turkey as part of the World Affairs Councils of America and the Turkish Cultural Foundation's Spotlight on Turkey program. "'I think the one word that can summarize my visit to Turkey is, amazing,' said Pinkerton Academy Spanish teacher Peter Schmidt, who recently returned from a teacher study tour of the country." Read Here

What's Happening in the Network 

Visit News from the National Network on our homepage for updates from around the network that include programs you can attend, participate in virtually, get ideas about speakers, or model format. We encourage you to follow-up with the sponsoring council for more information. If you have a program that you would like highlighted on our website or in the WACA Weekly, please contact Ian J. Byrne at

Share the Best: Practices
Webstreaming Your Programs
By The World Affairs Council of Northern California

The World Affairs Council of Northern California webstreams select programs to broaden audience reach beyond its auditorium. Here's why they've chosen to share their content in this way, and how you can do it yourself.



Webstreaming is the process of delivering multimedia, usually audio or video, over the internet. It can either be live or on-demand. With live streaming, a viewer hears and sees the media nearly in real time since the media is being delivered as it is being recorded. On-demand webstreaming, however, requires the viewer to request the media before it can be viewed. With both live and on-demand webstreaming, the media is not saved to the viewer's hard drive, but remains on the web server and can be played over and over again. 



Webstreaming allows us to share our programs in real-time beyond the actual audience that can attend in-person. Viewers from around the world can tune in and watch our programs live. It also eliminates postproduction and uploading time needed to share videos of our programs, as well as provides immediate access for our viewers.


Michele Dilworth, our Director of Marketing and Communications, explains how webstreaming fits into our larger marketing strategy, "Webstreaming our programs is about immediacy and broadening our audience reach. When programs are sold out or our online audience who is not local is interested in the program but cannot attend, we are able to push out content in real-time and also make it available to people outside our area." Once our program has been streamed live, the recorded video becomes available for viewing again and again immediately thereafter.



To be able to webstream, you need the video in the appropriate format that can be streamed and played on the web such as Apple's QuickTime, RealNetworks' RealMedia, Microsoft's Windows Media, or ISO-standard MPEG-4. You also need access to a web server, a streaming media server, and sufficient bandwidth.


For live streaming, you will need a camcorder, an encoder that allows you to capture quality HDMI and component analog video in SD or HD, a computer with a high performance processor, significant disk space, an external disk or DVD-burner to archive digital media files, a streaming media server and a high-speed internet connection (384K or better upload).


Webstreaming requires equipment, staff and training and the cost of these should be considered beforehand.


Live streaming platforms

There are several live streaming platform options available. Just recently, we chose YouTube Live as our main platform because YouTube has the largest video viewership on the web. Other benefits include that webstreaming on YouTube Live is free for non-profits, and it provides the opportunity to promote events by highlighting upcoming events on the YouTube Live homepage. YouTube also provides real-time analytics during and after your event, which includes the number of viewers, gender and age distributions, and locations. A live feed of user comments also runs alongside the streaming video.


Another option is Livestream (, which we have used previously. offers real-time customer support for premium account users, which is a huge benefit for those who are new to webstreaming, and if there is a high-profile event where a margin for error is not acceptable. Premium account users also have access to advanced analytics, including a list of sites where your Livestream has been embedded and how many times it has been viewed on each site and a breakdown of the number of views and viewer minutes for all content on your channel.


The downside of is that it requires a monthly fee for premium accounts while YouTube Live is for free. YouTube Live however does not provide real-time customer support unlike In terms of visibility, YouTube Live provides free promotion on the YouTube Live homepage whereas in, gaining visibility for an event requires an investment in advertising.



Promoting your upcoming webstream events is important, and you may do this by sharing your event to your members in advance via email and social media such as Twitter. You may also embed the webcast link on your website and Facebook page, as well as partner with other organizations in reaching out to more viewers.


Other tips

Consistently check and test your equipment and run pre-show tests to assure quality and success of your webstreaming experience. Many video companies now also offer webcasting services. Look into these companies in your area and consider hiring them to help your staff develop in-house expertise.


In summary, webstreaming can be a great way to deliver critical information about the issues shaping our world, and engage and inform a broader audience.


Check out and subscribe to WAC Northern California's YouTube channel at View several of our webstreamed eventson our Livestream channel,

 WACA Leadership Network

To access the WACA Leadership Network, go to our homepage and click on WACA Leadership Network on the right-hand side.  The WACA Leadership Network is a forum for sharing best practices and ideas among council members.  It includes: program resource materials, best practices, available authors and speaker recommendations, as well as a host of other information.

Available Authors

WACA Leadership Network

Working with the publishing houses, WACA has prepared a listing of authors on the WACA Leadership Network who are available to receive invitations from World Affairs Councils around the country.


button conferenceWe have specifically highlighted authors who can speak to one of the Six Top National Security Issues voted on by our Council Leaders. These authors will help us in our effort to conduct a national conversation and debate on these six top issues in the run up to the 2012 elections. We also have a listing of authors who can speak on other foreign policy topics under General Interest.


Among the latest additions to the Available Authors are:


Nicholas Kralev's America's Other Army: the U.S. Foreign Service and the Humanizing of Diplomacy brings the high-flying world of international diplomacy down to earth and puts a human face on a mysterious profession that has undergone a dramatic transformation since September 11, 2001.


Through the stories of American diplomats, the book explains how their work affects millions of people in the United States and around the world every day, and how it contributes directly to the core U.S. national interests of security and prosperity. It shows a more inclusive American diplomacy that has moved beyond interacting with governments and has engaged with the private sector, civil society and individual citizens.

Having visited more than 50 embassies and interviewed about 600 American diplomats, the author reveals a Foreign Service whose diversity and professional versatility have shattered old perceptions and redefined modern diplomacy. But he also depicts a service not fully equipped to address the complex challenges of the 21st century.


Nicholas Kralev is an author, educator and speaker on international affairs, diplomacy and global travel. A former Financial Times and Washington Times correspondent, he has traveled around the world with four U.S. secretaries of state -- Hillary Clinton, Condoleezza Rice, Colin Powell and Madeleine Albright. He has flown over 2 million miles and visited more than 80 countries.


He is the founder and CEO of Kralev International LLC, an air travel consulting and training company. His first book, Decoding Air Travel: A Guide to Saving on Airfare and Flying in Luxury, climbed to #80 on Amazon's bestseller list. He holds a master's degree in public policy from Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government and speaks five languages.
Osama Wazan's The Last Moderate Muslim is a novel about the sole survivor of the Black Saturday massacre, young Ziad Hadhari, who vows vengeance against the Christian perpetrators in Lebanon's civil war. But when the vigilante Othman orders Ziad to murder innocent Christian students, he cannot shoot. His father beats him for cowardice. Ziad falls in love with Sophia, a Westernized Christian whose family plans to emigrate to America. Fundamentalist enforcers drag Ziad and Sophia from his car and chop off their hair. As wartime Beirut devolves into a hell where feral dogs feed on corpses in the streets, Ziad vows to follow his traumatized girlfriend to the US. Many thousands apply for visas, but precious few are granted. Will the American gatekeepers in Damascus, Syria admit Ziad to the States, or is he doomed to the violent insanity of his homeland?

Osama Wazan was born in Beirut, Lebanon where he attended a Saudi Arabian funded Islamic school. In 1975, the Lebanese civil war broke out transforming his family's neighborhood into a combat zone. For 15 years, they were surrounded by snipers, explosions, and religious massacres. In spite of the elements, Wazan earned a Bachelors of Science. He played on the Lebanese National Universities basketball team for three years and crossed the sectarian divide. He became the first Muslim player to sign up with a Christian basketball club during the war time. 

In 1989, Wazan emigrated to the United States motivated by the realization that it was hopeless to aspire for security and prosperity in a country ensnared by religious violence and geopolitical conflicts. Wazan earned an MBA and worked in the shipping, management consulting, and Information Technology industries. In 2000, he founded an Information Technology services firm, which he sold in 2005.

It was in 2009 when Wazan wrote The Last Moderate Muslim. He was propelled by the desire to catalyze peace from the ground up. His subject matter expertise in the Qur'an, Islam, Muslim, Arab, and Middle Eastern culture enabled him to fuse his war stories with lessons learned for a better world and transformed them into an authentic route map for peace. To that end, Wazan gives talks such as Ending Religious Violence: The Journey to Civility, and From a dormant radical to an active moderate: The Journey.

Wazan is a member of the World Affairs Council of Charlotte and serves as a Global Trustee at United Religions Initiative. He chairs the programming committee at Charlotte's Cooperation Circle. He is the former chair of Mecklenburg Ministries' Food for Thought committee and a member of the Comparative Religions committee at Temple Beth El, World Affairs Council, and Amnesty International.


For more information on these authors and more, go to our homepagethen click on WACA Leadership Network. Once logged in, click on "Available Authors."

Be Part of the WACA Newsletter!

If you would like to highlight an upcoming program, email Ian J. Byrne at with the relevant information (a description of 200 words or less). Of course, if there is anything else we can do to help promote your programs within the network, please let us know.

The World Affairs Councils of America 

1200 18th St., NW, Suite 902, Washington, DC 20036

Phone (202) 833-4557  Fax (202) 833-4555

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