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 July 2014

In this Issue
Letter from the President
News from the National Office
WACs in the News
Recommended Speakers
What's Happening in the Network
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Letter from the President

Dear Friends and Supporters:


Happy New Year and Happy Fourth!


Two holidays? Not exactly... July 1st brings the new fiscal year for the World Affairs Councils of America. And with that, I am pleased to introduce to you the FY2015 Executive Committee of the WACA National Board:


Ambassador Paula J. Dobriansky, Chair

Dixie Anderson, Vice Chair (Executive Director, WAC of Western Michigan)  

Alex Lari, Vice Chair (Chairman, The Claremont Group)

Ward Fredericks, Treasurer (Chairman, WAC of the Desert)

Rich Crepage, Secretary (Treasurer, WAC of Northwest Ohio)

Bill Clifford, President and CEO (ex officio)

Neal Goins, At-Large (Director, International Government Relations, Exxon Mobil)

Noel Lateef, At-Large (President, Foreign Policy Association)

Timor Rafiq, At-Large (Executive Board Member, WAC of Orange County)

Sky Foerster, Governance Committee Chair (President, Colorado Springs WAC)

Steve Sokol, Development Committee Chair (President & CEO, WAC of Pittsburgh)


It is a great privilege to work with these dedicated leaders, and indeed all the members of our talented, diverse, and engaged National Board.


Next week, we will open registration for our annual National Conference in November (I am thrilled that many of you have already made hotel reservations!). Be sure also to share details of our topical conference calls with your Council members - as well as the new subscription benefit to PRISM, a highly respected quarterly journal published by our new partners at National Defense University.


Meanwhile, whether you are headed to the beach, the mountains, lakeside, or your own backyard for a classic barbecue, all of us at the National Office wish you a very happy Fourth of July weekend!


Bill Clifford
President and CEO
News from the National Office
Cover to Cover Author Series
Join us for our monthly conference call with Ritu Sharma, Co-Founder and President of Women Thrive Worldwide, on her new book Teach a Woman to Fish: Overcoming Poverty Around the Globe. The call will take place on Wednesday, July 9, at 2:00 PM ET.


to receive dial-in instructions.
As the old axiom goes: "Give a man a fish and he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish and he eats for a lifetime." But teach a woman to fish, and everyone eats for a lifetime, argues Ritu Sharma in her engaging firsthand account of how women can overcome the forces that keep them in poverty, and how Americans can help facilitate women's upward mobility. She chronicles her travels through four countries -- Sri Lanka, Burkina Faso, Honduras, and Nicaragua -- and the intimate interactions she had with the women living there. Teach a Woman to Fishprovides an insider's look at women in poverty, how Washington works, and how change really happens -- from the United States to the rest of the world.


Ritu Sharma is a leading voice on international women's issues and US foreign policy. She is co-founder of Women Thrive Worldwide, a non-profit that places the concerns of women and girls living in poverty at the forefront of U.S. international assistance. Full Bio
Hot Topics and 1918  
The World Affairs Councils of America hosted Ambassador Luis CdeBaca, U.S. Ambassador-at-Large, Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, for a 1918 Society Conference Call on June 30.


The U.S. Department of State recently released its Trafficking in Persons Report 2014. The report provides an in-depth look on human trafficking across the globe, its victims, its survivors, and actions that the U.S. government is taking to combat modern slavery.


As you may know, WACA is currently in the second year of its Combating Human Trafficking education program, which is made possible by a generous grant from Carlson & The Carlson Family Foundation. The 2014 program includes over 30 events at World Affairs Councils. Click here for more information.


Ambassador Luis CdeBaca was appointed by President Obama to coordinate U.S. government activities in the global fight against human trafficking in May 2009. He serves as Senior Advisor to the Secretary of State and directs the State Department's Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, which assesses global trends, provides training and technical assistance, and advocates for an end to modern slavery. Mr. CdeBaca formerly served as Counsel to the House Committee on the Judiciary, where his portfolio included national security, intelligence, immigration, civil rights, and modern slavery issues. Full Bio


Combating Human Trafficking 

Carlson & The Carlson Family Foundation renewed funding of the World Affairs Councils of America's national program on combating human trafficking. More than 30 World Affairs Councils participated in the 2013 program, which featured screenings of the documentary film Not My Life. The 2014 program features discussion forums as well as film screenings.


Upcoming events include:


July 10 -- World Affairs Council -- Washington, DC


PRISM: New Subscription Benefit for WAC Members 

The Center for Complex Operations at the National Defense University is pleased to offer a free subscription of their quarterly journal, PRISM, to World Affairs Councils and their members. PRISM is a security studies journal chartered by the Department of Defense to inform policymakers, allies, and academics on complex and integrated national security operations; reconstruction and state-building; and developments in training and education. Each journal features academic and policy-driven articles, book reviews, commentaries, and lessons from the field.  Recent contributors include former U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Marc Grossman, former U.S. Army General and CIA Director David Petraeus, DIA Director Michael T. Flynn, U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan James F. Dobbins.  


To subscribe, please email with the subject line, "PRISM Subscription," and include your name, council affiliation, and mailing address.

National Conference: November 5-7, 2014
Save the date! The World Affairs Councils of America will host its 2014 National Conference, America and the World 2015, on November 5-7 at The Fairfax at Embassy Row Hotel.

Held annually for over two decades, the World Affairs Councils of America's National Conference engages our regional leaders and members drawn from the business, civic, and education communities with leading policy-makers and experts. 


The Conference helps to frame and guide our national network of Councils to plan programming for the coming year on critical global and U.S. foreign policy issues identified by our network leadership across the country. 


In March, we asked Council membership to select 10 topics/regions from among 40 topics. The results of this poll revealed several new themes in addition to some from previous Conferences that remain compelling. These topics and related issues will inform the 2014 National Conference agenda:

  • China, the U.S., and Asia
  • Russia / Eurasia
  • Cybersecurity
  • Future of Education
  • Youth, Jobs, and Social Unrest
  • Food and Water
  • Global Economic Realignment
  • Future of Energy
  • Africa
  • Climate Change

Last year's conference kicked off with Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) at Wednesday evening's opening dinner and closed with a keynote from former First Lady Laura Bush. Past conferences have featured distinguished speaker and panelists including Zbigniew Brzezinski, former CIA Director General David Petraeus, Singaporean Ambassador to the U.S. Ashok Kumar Mirpuri, Senator Mark Warner (D-VA), former National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley, and many more. Click here to see our 2013 speakers and agenda.

Staying at The Fairfax 

We have secured a special group rate at The Fairfax at Embassy Row:


Superior King: $234 per night (Single/Double Occupancy)


Superior Two Doubles: $254 per night (Single/Double Occupancy)


Reserve Room Here

World Affairs Councils in the News

World Affairs Council of Dallas/Fort Worth

Amid Ukraine Controversy, Russian Ambassador Speaks Out -- The Dallas Morning News 


World Affairs Council of Atlanta

UPS's New CEO Is Trade Expert, Key World Affairs Council Supporter -- Global Atlanta


Minnesota International Center 

'The Great War's' Great Impact and WWI: A Century Later, We're Still Feeling Ripple Effect -- Minneapolis Star Tribune


World Affairs Council of Greater Reading

Rachel Carson Council President Speaks to World Affairs Council About Continuing the Environmentalist's Legacy -- Berks-Mont News


World Affairs Council of Seattle

Odle Sixth-grader Takes First Place in World Citizens Essay Contest -- Bellevue Reporter


World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh

Quaker Valley Junior Bound for Tanzanian Adventure -- Pittsburgh Tribune-Review 

Recommended Speakers Database
Leadership NetworkThe World Affairs Councils of America offers a Recommended Speakers Database on the WACA Leadership Network

Please log into the WACA Leadership Network and take advantage of this great resource. 

What's Happening in the Network 

There are over 40 World Affairs Council events scheduled this month across the country. 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. Also be sure to check out travel programs offered by World Affairs Councils on our homepage. We encourage you to follow-up with the sponsoring council for more information. If we missed something or if you have a program that you would like highlighted on our website or in the WACA Weekly, please contact Ian J. Byrne at

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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