Ambassador/Professor Ibrahim A.Gambari

Ibrahim A.Gambari, a scholar-diplomat, was appointed by the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Jean Ping, as Joint Special Representative of the Africa Union-United Nations Hybrid Operations in Darfur (UNAMID), effective 1 January 2010. It is the largest international peace-keeping designated Joint Chief Mediator, ad interim, in charge of the ongoing negotiations between the Government of Sudan and the Darfur opposition movements. Ambassador Gambari has held several leadership positions at the national, regional and international levels and has built extensive contacts with Governments as well as public and private institutions, especially in Africa. He was the Chairman of the United Nations Special Committee Against Apartheid (1990-1994) during which he worked closely with African Governments to coordinate UN policy to eradicate apartheid, thereby, building trust and confidence with Governments and policy makers in member countries of the Southern African Development Community (SADEC). Ambassador Gambari was Under-Secretary-General and Special Adviser to the Secretary-General on Africa (1999-2005). In that capacity he worked closely with Heads of Government, key policy makers as well as institutions in the continent to develop the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD). During this period, he was concurrently the Resident Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Mission to Angola (2002-2003). He has been a delegate to the Assembly of the African Union in the capacity as a national delegate (1984-1985) and as a member of the UN Secretary- General’s delegation (2000-2012).At the global level, Ambassador Gambari was Under-Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Department of Political Affairs (2005-2007). In that period, he also operated as Un Secretary-General’s Special Envoy on Cyprus, Zimbabwe and Myanmar. On 22 May 2007, the Secretary-General entrusted him with the Good Offices Mandate on Myanmar. He was also appointed in 2007 by the Secretary-General as Under-Secretary-General and Special Adviser on Iraq Compact and Other Issues, positions which held until 2009. Before joining the United Nations, he served his country as Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Nigeria to the United Nations (1990-1999). He was also Minister of Foreign Affairs of Nigeria (1984-1985) and worked closely with regional leaders, institutions and governments, particularly within the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) on the economic and political development of the sub-region. Prior to this, he was the Director-General of the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs. As a scholar, Ambassador Gambari is the author of several books and scholarly articles. He began his teaching career as a Lecturer at the Queen’s College, City University of New York, NY (1969-1974), followed by an Assistant Professorship at the State University of New York, NY (1974-1977). Upon return to his country, Nigeria, he was appointed Senior Lecturer at the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, (1977-1980), and rose to become an Associate Professor (Reader), (1980-1983) and subsequently full Professor at the same University (1983 – present – currently on leave of absence). Ambassador Gambari was a visiting Professor at the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) of the Johns Hopkins University, Georgetown University and Howard University in Washington, DC from 1986 to 1989. Ambassador Gambari was also a Research Fellow at the Brookings Institution, Washington, DC, as well as a Resident Scholar with the Rockefeller Foundation Centre in Bellagio, Italy. A recipient of the third highest national honour, Commander of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (CFR), Ambassador Gambari has also been awarded, Doctor of Humane Letters degrees (honoris causa) form the University of Bridgeport, Connecticut (2002) and Farleigh Dickinson University, New Jersey (2006)/ Others include, Honorary Doctorate of Public Service, Chatham University (May 2008) and Honorary Doctor of Letters (D.Litt), University of Ibadan, Nigeria (November 2011). He has also received the Special Recognition for International Development and Diplomacy Award conferred by the Africa-America Institute (September 2007), the Distinguished (Foreign) Service Award by the Federal Government of Nigeria (April 22008), the International House Harry Edmonds Award for Lifetime Achievement, New York ( May 2009) and the Campaign Against Genocide Medal by the Republic of Rwanda ( July 2010). Ambassador Gambari received South Africa’s highest national honour conferred on non-citizens, the Order of the Companions of O. R. Tambo, which was conferred to him personally by President Jacob Zuma on 26 October 2012. Professor Gambari was elected to the Johns Hopkins University Society of Scholars in 2002 and has since 2005 served as a member of the International Advisory Board of the Institute of Peace, Leadership and Governance at Africa University, Zimbabwe. He was appointed as First Chancellor, Kwara State University in Nigeria, March 2013. Professor Gambari is the founder of Savannah Centre in Abuja, Nigeria. This is a centre of excellence for research and public policy studies on the challenges of conflict prevention and resolution.

Ambassador (Ret’d) Scott H. DeLisi

Scott DeLisi served the government of the United States for 34 years as a diplomat, capping his distinguished career representing President Barack Obama as American Ambassador to the Republic of Uganda from 2012 - 2015.   Currently, he is serving as the Executive Director of Soarway, a charitable foundation dedicated to helping the people of Nepal recover from the devastating earthquakes of 2015 and build a stronger, safer, and more resilient future. Ambassador DeLisi also represented President Obama as Ambassador to the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, from March 2010 to July 2012, and he was President George W. Bush’s Ambassador to the State of Eritrea from 2004-2007. Earlier in his career, Ambassador DeLisi was also the Deputy Ambassador at the American Embassy in Gaborone, Botswana. In Washington, Ambassador DeLisi served as the Director of Career Development and Assignments in the State Department’s Bureau of Human Resources and as the Director for Entry-Level Programs in the same bureau. Among his other domestic assignments he has served as Director for Southern African Affairs, and also in the Bureau of Intelligence & Research, and the Bureau of South and Central Asia Affairs. Overseas, he has had additional postings in India, Madagascar, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Ambassador DeLisi has been the recipient of two Presidential Rank Awards, the Charles E. Cobb Award for Initiative and Success in Trade Development, the James Clement Dunn Award for Excellence, the CIA Director’s Award, the DIA Director’s Award, and multiple Superior Honor and Meritorious Honor Awards from the Department of State. His foreign languages include French and Urdu. Ambassador DeLisi is a graduate of the University of Minnesota, earned the degree of Juris Doctor from the University of Minnesota Law School, and also attended the Hubert H Humphrey School of Public Affairs. Ambassador DeLisi is married and has 3 children and 3 grandchildren.

Winnie Lanoix

Dr. Winnie Lanoix is a certified executive and leadership coach, with area of expertise in executive presence, organizational dynamics, global leadership, emotional intelligence, interpersonal skills, communication, on-boarding, team alignment and influencing skills. With over 25 years of coaching experience, Winnie is known for creating positive behavioral changes in leaders. As a trained counseling psychologist with a background in organizational dynamics and a profit and loss business experience, she has the benefit of understanding the individual and the interplay between emotional intelligence and success in the business environment. By building on positive attributes, Winnie has been able to reduce the time needed to create sustainable changes. Winnie’s style is practical and focused. Winnie has coached leaders in companies such as COMCAST, The Fulton Corporation, The WorldBankGroup and IFC, DTCC, ARKEMA, SIEMENS, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Linde, Intelsat, LSI, Cleveland Clinic, Day and Zimmerman, DuPont, Wilmington Trust, MBNA, Bryn Mawr Trust, AstraZeneca, Monsanto, DTCC, SAP, Johnson & Johnson, GlaxoSmithKline, Lockheed Martin, CGI, Verizon, Wharton in the MBA and the EMBA programs, Merck, as well as in higher education. Winnie has served as a Global Subject Matter Expert for Coaching Center for Excellence; supervised the quality delivery of over 100 coaches globally; and conducted research on best practices and the ROI of coaching. Winnie holds a doctorate in Counseling Psychology, (Ed.D) from Rutgers University, a B.A. magna cum laude, from Tufts University, and M.A. and M.E d. degrees in Organizational Behavior from Columbia University. She is certified by the International Coach Federation (ICF). Winnie grew up in Geneva, Switzerland and has extensive coaching practice with people from diverse cultures and has coached, VPs, GMs, CIOs, CEOs, Directors and high potentials.

John E. Heather

Over the last decade John’s USAID / UN assignments in destination management, private-sector engagement and workforce development have taken him to Mongolia, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Iraq and Afghanistan. He spent 14 years on Guam, America’s Gateway to Asia, expanding the DFS duty-free retail empire, managing the Guam Visitors Bureau market research department, and chairing the International Tourism Department at the University of Guam. John consulted throughout the Pacific-Asia region and took a lead role in the PATA Young Tourism Professionals program. John also taught international tourism at Arizona State University where he worked closely with Native American communities to collectively program and market their cultural and natural attractions. High on the the Mogollon Rim, John owned and operated a luxury fly-in vacation estate. John specializes in aligning local community and investor challenges with international best practices. He is currently a faculty member of international hospitality and tourism management at Saint Leo University in Florida and member of the Pasco County Tourism Development Council.

Jim Rives

Jim Rives worked as a Senior Director at FTI Consulting and is based in Washington DC as a Bank Regulation and Governance Practice within the Forensic and Litigation Consulting Segment. Mr. Rives is a financial services regulatory professional with more than 25 years’ experience in consumer finance, commercial banking, and financial institution supervision and remediation in the United States, Europe, Asia and Latin America. Mr. Rives focuses his practice across the compliance and credit risk areas, providing clients with assistance on a wide range of issues from a practitioner and regulatory perspective, including governance, risk management and compliance. In addition to assisting clients resolve issues with regulatory agencies, Mr. Rives performs due diligence and independently analyses bank compliance and credit administration functions. Mr. Rives has expertise in commercial and industrial, commercial real estate and consumer/retail lending, including mortgages. Prior to joining FTI, Mr. Rives was a Supervisory and Principal Examiner at the Federal Housing Financial Agency (FHFA) where he assisted in the supervision and examination of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Federal Home Loan Banks. Mr. Rives led a targeted examination of enterprise risk management at Freddie Mac in 2011 and was the Examination Manager for a team of credit examiners embedded at Fannie Mae in 2013-2014 charged with ongoing supervision of single family ($3.1 trillion) and multifamily ($200 billion) credit risk management, compliance and operational activities. He has represented numerous financial institutions, directors and officers of banks and thrifts, and affiliated parties of depository institutions in enforcement matters brought by financial institution regulators as well as in monetary claims made against such individuals and entities. He was primarily responsible for the settlement of a $50 million claim brought by the FDIC against 34 former directors of a failed New York City bank. The claim was based on violation of laws and regulations, abusive insider transactions and negligence on the part of the directors. Tom led the steering committee of lawyers in these negotiations with the FDIC. From 2006 through 2008, Mr. Rives managed a $15 million portfolio of technical assistance projects for the International Monetary Fund (IMF) designed to assist member countries identify and diagnose financial system problems and deliver advisory services for transactional or systemic reforms activities consistent with macroeconomic and other structural policies including the development and capacity building of national financial intelligence units. the Senate Subcommittee on Housing. His practice continues to be heavily involved in federal and state financial services regulatory issues. From 1998 to 2006 in a consultancy role, Mr. Rives delivered and managed financial sector regulation, compliance, restructuring, and reform projects in emerging markets spearheading training, change management and transformation activities for regulatory agencies, central banks and other public service, private and industry associations. Mr. Rives led and trained teams of examiners, bankers, due diligence and other subject matter experts in: i) the development and implementation of modern supervisory tools at central banks and national regulatory agencies (CAMELS and other rating systems, financial regulatory reporting, early warning systems, enforcement and compliance frameworks, etc.); ii) the turnaround and privatization of banks, non-bank financial institutions, and payment systems; and iii) the development of deposit insurance schemes and financial intelligence units. Mr. Rives demonstrated 'cradle to grave' proficiency in administering USAID and foreign government bilateral and multilateral grants and contracts in compliance with relevant donor regulations. Previously, Mr. Rives worked at the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), the primary regulator of National Banks, as an examiner and policy analyst. Mr. Rives conducted numerous compliance (AML/BSA, consumer protection/fair lending and Community Reinvestment Act), safety and soundness examinations principally in problem financial institutions in the Southwest and Northeast United States. He developed extensive governance, risk management and compliance experience and expertise during his nine years as a field examiner and two years in policy development and implementation in the OCC’s national headquarters in Washington DC. Mr. Rives began his career at a consumer finance company and then at a commercial bank where he focused on retail lending, credit analysis, commercial (real estate and industrial) loan underwriting, troubled loan workout and collections. Jim received his M.B.A. from Marymount University, B.B.A. from Stephen F. Austin State University, Stonier Graduate School of Banking (No Thesis) at University of Delaware. He completed Course on Risk Management at George Washington University. He received number of certifications including Commissioned National Bank Examiner (NBE), Certified Housing Finance Examiner (HFE), International Certificate of Bank Regulation and Risk (ICBRR), Professional Affiliations Financial Executives Network Group (FENG), Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP), Professional Risk Managers International Association (PRMIA), and Risk Management Association (RMA)

Padmanabhan Seshaiyer

Dr. Padmanabhan Seshaiyer is a tenured Professor of Mathematical Sciences at George Mason University and serves as the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the College of Science and the Director of COMPLETE (Center for Outreach in Mathematics Professional Learning and Educational Technology) at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia. His research interests are in the broad areas of computational mathematics, scientific computing, computational biomechanics and STEM education.
His research in computational biomechanics includes developing, extending and applying mathematics for
the purposes of better understanding the physiology and pathophysiology of the human vascular system. Integrated with the research plan is a STEM education plan where the primary goal is to teach students and teachers at all levels to apply well-developed research concepts, to fundamental applications arising in STEM disciplines. During the last decade, Dr. Seshaiyer contributed extensively to teaching and won several prestigious awards, including the President's Excellence Award in Teaching which is the highest award for teaching offered at two different institutions, the faculty mentoring excellence award in 2013, the GMU Alumni Faculty of the Year in 2014 and also has been nominated for the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring (PAESMEM). He has delivered keynote and plenary talks at several national and international meetings. He is also one of the Nifty-Fifty speakers and an X-STEM Symposium Speaker for the USA Science and Engineering Festival invited for a fourth time and also has given two TEDx talks, the most recent one being "The M in STEM". He serves on several prominent local and national organizations including a newly formed VA-STEM learning network; the Virginia Mathematics and Science Coalition; the WashingtonExec STEM Council; the LEGO Education Advisory Panel (LEAP) and the Northern Virginia MATHCOUNTS board. In 2013 he was elected both as a new Councilor for the Mathematics and Computer Science Division of the Council on Undergraduate Research as well as the US National Commission for Mathematics Instruction by the National Academy of Sciences. He is also actively involved in multiple global STEM collaborative projects and training programs that engage students and faculty from various countries including Tanzania, Suriname, Philippines, Myanmar, Tunisia, India, Colombia, Ecuador, South Korea, Jamaica, Belize, Bahamas, Laos, Singapore and a more recently formed Latin-American Consortium of researchers from multiple countries. In summary, Dr. Seshaiyer’s contributions have included directing two major funded centers of excellence; mentoring research projects for over 175 students at all levels; publishing over 100 peer-reviewed journal articles and proceedings; authoring two graduate texts (one in Numerical Analysis and another on mathematical modeling for teachers); acquiring over $8 Million in grant funding (both state and federal) to promote multidisciplinary research, training and mentoring programs for students, teachers and faculty; directing over 25 new initiatives to accelerate STEM learning in formal and informal environments; developing global partnerships with over 12 countries for student and faculty exchange programs; leading new State-wide and Federal consortiums in teacher Professional Development; winning over 20 individual teaching, mentoring as well as program awards; delivering over 225 invited talks both nationally and internationally; being selected as a member of 5 prestigious National organizations and; with accomplishments featured through more than 50 media news coverage articles and stories and; has served as a Program Director at the National Science Foundation in the Division of Mathematical Sciences

Douglas K. Barry

Douglas K. Barry is the Director of Communications and Publications at the US-China Business Council. Before joining USCBC, Doug worked in the private sector as a strategic communications consultant, assisting clients in industries including healthcare, data analytics, and higher education. Doug is a seasoned marketing and communications professional with extensive private and public sector experience. Doug has been a strategist and program evaluator for clients including the U.S. Department of Labor, U.S. Department of Defense, and as a Senior Advisor in the Office of the Under Secretary for International Trade, U.S. Department of Commerce. He established the marketing and strategic partnership programs for a major Federal Government bureau. Doug's extensive international experience includes work in Asia, Latin America, Eastern Europe and West Africa. With backgrounds in journalism, education, government relations, and international business, Doug provides clients with innovative solutions to challenges with change management, thought leadership, corporate responsibility, and customer retention and growth. He has authored numerous books on business and intercultural communication. In addition, he appears regularly as a member of the "Brain Trust" on the Small Business Advocate radio show. In 2015, he was named International Trade Educator of the Year by NASBITE, the accreditation organization for international business professionals. A former producer for ABC News in New York and London, Doug has been featured by numerous media outlets as a subject matter expert and spokesperson. These outlets include The New York Times, The Washington Post, NPR's All Things Considered, USA Today, the Canadian Broadcasting Company, NHK (Japan), The Christian Science Monitor, and many others. He has spoken at events presented by FedEx, UPS, eBay, the American Association for Freight Forwarders, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Doug had earned Masters from New York University and Doctorate in Education (Ed.D.) from Columbia University.