Past Speakers

Katharine Babson

Katharine Babson has made over 30 month-long trips to Myanmar since 1994.

A graduate of Williams College, she earned her Masters in Divinity from Virginia Seminary and her Doctorate in Ministry from Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington D.C

A strong proponent of inter-cultural, interfaith, and international exchange among people of difference, she has served on the Episcopal Church’s Standing Commission for World Mission, and now chairs its Episcopal Partnership for Global Mission, a
consortium of Episcopal Church agencies working in various capacities all over the world. She is Adjunct Faculty in the Department of Mission and World Religion at Virginia Seminary in Alexandria Virginia

.At home in Maine, she and her husband, Bradley, live in a mid-18th century cape in Pennellville, Brunswick.

Andrew Zolotov, Jr

Andrei Zolotov, Jr. is the Chief Editor of RussiaProfile.org. Since June 2009, he is also Deputy Director of International Service at the Russian News and Information Agency “Novosti.”

A native of Moscow, he graduated from the Moscow State University’s School of Journalism in 1992. During his studies, spent a year as an exchange student at Sarah Lawrence College and a year as a visiting scholar at Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

He began his career in journalism as a translator and fixer at the Moscow bureau of The Christian Science Monitor. He went on to serve as Moscow correspondent for the Geneva-based news and features agency Ecumenical News International (ENI).
In 1997, Andrei joined The Moscow Times, where he covered politics, media and religion as a senior staff writer. Also in 1997, Andrei was named the John Templeton European Religion Journalist of the Year. Two years later, he was awarded a Carnegie Media Fellowship at Duke University.

His coverage of the takeover of NTV and TV-6 television companies, as well as other aspects of the country’s media policies earned Andrei a reputation as an expert on media issues; he is also recognized as an expert in Russia’s religious affairs and global developments related to Orthodox Christianity.

In 2003, Mr. Zolotov left The Moscow Times and ENI to develop Russia Profile, which he has served as editor since its inception. In 2008-09 academic year he was a Nieman Fellow at Harvard University

Tom Andrews

Tom Andrews, a former Member of Congress from the first Congressional District of Maine, is the National Director of Win Without War, a coalition of forty-two national membership organizations including the National Council of Churches, the NAACP, the National Organization of Women, the Sierra Club, and MoveOn. Win Without War led the national campaign opposing the US invasion of Iraq and is now leading opposition to the Bush administration’s policy there.

Andrews’ leadership of Win Without War has thrust him into the national spotlight appearing on network television programs such as Meet the Press, NewsNight with Aaron Brown, Wolf Blitzer Reports, Lou Dobbs and Crossfire and through speeches and special events including an address to the National Press Club in Washington that was broadcast to a live national television and radio audience. Andrews is a widely known and respected strategist and organizer. Win Without War’s campaign to lobby Congress generated over 1 million calls in a single day and its global candlelight vigil led to over six thousand events in 136

Andrews is President of New Economy Communications, a not-for-profit organization that provides strategic planning and communication services to individuals and groups working on human and labor rights issues at home and abroad. His clients include “No More Sweatshops – The Campaign for the Abolition of Sweatshop and Child Labor.” He is Senior Advisor to the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, chaired by Former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. He has worked to promote democracy and human rights in emerging democracies throughout the world including Indonesia, Cambodia, Yemen, Algeria, Croatia, Serbia and Jordan and with international coalitions in Europe and East Asia.

He works on behalf of Nobel Peace Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, leader of the National League of Democracy of Burma, the political party that won 82% of the seats in the parliament in Burma’s last democratic election but was denied the right to take office by Burma’s brutal military regime. In 2001 Andrews directed an international campaign for the release of Suu Kyi with the Nobel Peace Committee in Oslo Norway. The campaign featured 40 simultaneous events worldwide that included the Dalai Lama, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, former Philippine President Corozan Aquino, and twenty-one Nobel Peace Laureates. The events were connected through satellite television and the Internet.

Andrews’ twelve years in public political office earned him a reputation as a strong, principled and effective leader. The columnist Jack Anderson called Andrews “the most courageous member of Congress.” Ralph Nader, the consumer advocate, called him “the most principled politician I have ever met.”

He was elected to the Maine House of Representatives in 1982, the Maine Senate in 1984 and the United States Congress in 1990. In the Maine Senate Andrews served as Chairman of the Joint Standing Committees on Taxation, Economic Development, and State Government. Upon his arrival in Washington, Andrews was elected president of the class of newly elected Democrats. He served on the powerful Armed Services Committee as well as the Committee on Small Business and the Merchant Marine and Fisheries Committee and was a Deputy Majority Whip.

Andrews grew up on a farm in Easton, Massachusetts and moved to Maine to attend Bowdoin College where he earned a degree in Philosophy and Religion. A turning point in his life was the discovery of cancer in his right leg at the age of sixteen. “I made one of those classic deals with the Almighty: Let me live and I’ll make it worth your while. I have literally been trying to keep my end of the bargain ever since.” His home is in South Portland Maine.

Nancy Soderberg

Nancy Soderberg was the senior policy advisor to Sen. Ted Kennedy and became a top National Security official in the Clinton administration 1993-1997 with the title of Deputy Assistant to the president on national security affairs. From 1997-2001 she was an alternative representative to the UN with the rank of ambassador. After leaving the UN she was vice president of the International Crisis Group. She is the author of several books among them “The Superpower Myth”. She appears regularly on national TV and radio. Adjunct Professor – School of Int. & Public Affairs, Columbia University.

Donald P. Gregg

September 2009

Topic: Where we go from here on the Korean penninsula

Donald P. Gregg is Chairman of the Board of The Korea Society in New York City.

Following graduation from Williams College in 1951, he joined the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), and over the next quarter century was assigned to Japan, Burma, Vietnam and Korea. He was seconded to the National Security Council staff in 1979, where he was in charge of intelligence activities and Asian policy affairs.

In 1982, he was asked by the then Vice President George Bush to become his national security advisor. He then retired from the CIA, and was awarded its highest decoration, the Distinguished Intelligence Medal. During his six years with Vice President Bush, Mr. Gregg traveled to 65 countries.

Between 1980-1989, he also served as a professorial lecturer at Georgetown University, where he taught a graduate level workshop entitled “Force and Diplomacy.”

In September 1989, Mr. Gregg began his service as the United States Ambassador to Korea. Prior to his departure from Korea in 1993, Mr. Gregg received the Department of Defense Medal for Distinguished Public Service, an Honorary Degree from Sogang University, and a decoration from the Prime Minister of Korea.

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Dr. R. Drew Smith

R. Drew Smith, Director
The Public Influences of African-American Churches Project
Scholar-in-Residence, The Leadership Center

R. Drew Smith is Scholar-in-Residence at the Leadership Center at Morehouse College,Atlanta, GA. In this capacity, he has initiated and directed a number of projects related to religion and public life, including the Public Influences of African-American Churches Project and the Faith Communities and Urban Families Project. These Projects have collected research data on political involvements, community development activities, and outreach ministries of African-American churches in numerous parts of the United States. The Projects have also convened seminars, conferences, and roundtables that have brought clergy, policy makers, and community leaders together to discuss matters pertaining to the church’s public mission and ministry. In addition to his own work on religion and public life, Dr. Smith has served on the advisory boards of other academic and nongovernmental organizations concerned with religion and public life, including the Pew Partnership for Civic Change, the Institute for Church Administration and Management, Calvin College’s Institute for the Study of Christianity and Politics, and Notre Dame University’s Center for the Study of Latino Religion.

Dr. Smith is a political scientist who has taught at Indiana University, Butler University, Case Western Reserve University, and New York Theological Seminary. Dr. Smith has been actively involved in international community development and youth leadership development, initially as an executive staff person at Operation Crossroads Africa during the 1980s. He has traveled widely in Africa and Latin America, with his Africa involvements taking him to twenty African countries since the mid-1980s. Most recently, he served in 2005 as a Fulbright Professor at the University of Pretoria in South Africa. He has also lectured in many international venues, including Brazil, Cameroon, Ghana, South Africa, and lectured in Israel in Spring of 2007 as part of the U.S. State Department’s Speakers Bureau. In addition, Dr. Smith is a Baptist clergyman, and has ministered in a number of parish, prison, and campus ministry contexts.

Ambassador Teresita C. Schaffer

Ambassador Teresita Schaffer came to CSIS in August 1998 after a 30-year career in the U.S. Foreign Service. She devoted most of her career to international economic issues and to South Asia, on which she was one of the State Department’s principal experts.

From 1989 to 1992, she served as deputy assistant secretary of state for South Asia, at that time the senior South Asia position in the department; from 1992 to 1995, she was the U.S. ambassador to Sri Lanka; and from 1995 to 1997, she served as director of the Foreign Service Institute. Her earlier posts included Tel Aviv, Islamabad, New Delhi, and Dhaka, as well as a tour as director of the Office of International Trade in the State Department. She spent a year as a consultant on business issues relating to South Asia after retiring from the Foreign Service.

Her publications include “Sri Lanka: Lessons from the 1995 Negotiations,” in Creating Peace in Sri Lanka (Brookings, 1998); two studies on women in Bangladesh; and “Kashmir: Fifty Years of Running in Place,” in Grasping the Nettle (USIP, 2004). Her CSIS publications include Kashmir: The Economics of Peace Building (2005), Pakistan’s Future and U.S. Policy Options (2004), Rising India and U.S. Policy Options in Asia (2002), and several reports on the HIV/AIDS epidemic in India. Schaffer has taught at Georgetown University and American University. She speaks French, Swedish, German, Italian, Hebrew, Hindi, and Urdu, and has studied Bangla and Sinhala.

Gary Brewer

Gary Brewer is currently the Frederick K. Weyerhauser Professor of Resource Policy and Management at the Yale School of Management. He is a policy scientist whose professional career began at the RAND Corporation in 1970, where he was a senior staff member of the Social Science Department. He later directed Yale’s Institution for social and Policy Studies and was Dean of the University of Michigan School of Natural Resources and Environment. Hw has also worked in Sweden , where he was elected to the Royal Swedish Academy, and in California, where he was Professor of Resource Policy in the Energy and Resource Group at the University of California at Berkeley. Among his books is “Decision Making for the Environment (with P. Stern and others) published by National Academies Press in 2005.

Dominique Moïsi

Dominique Moïsi (Co-Chair) is senior adviser to the French Institute of International Affairs; chief editor of Politique Etrangere, the Institute’s quarterly publication; and a professor at the Institute of Political Studies in Paris. He is a regular columnist for the Financial Times, Quest France and other European newspapers as well as a contributor to Foreign Affairs and Atlantic Quarterly. His academic career has included positions at Harvard University Summer School in 1987; Ecole National d’Administration from 1981 to 1986; Johns Hopkins University in Bologna, Italy from 1983 to 1984; and the Woodrow Wilson Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C. Dr. Moïsi is a member of the Board of the Aspen Institute, Berlin, and a member of the Expert Group of the European Parliament on the Prevention of Conflicts, Brussels. He received a Ph.D. in law from the Institute of Political Studies in Paris. Dr. Moïsi serves on the Board of Directors of the Salzburg Seminar and has served on the Faculty of numerous Sessions, most recently as the chair of Session 409, Migration, Race, and Ethnicity in Europe, 2003, and the Common Interest Forum Planning Meeting, 2003. He is currently a visiting professor at Harvard.

Alfredo Corchado

Alfredo Corchado has worked for the Dallas Morning News since 1994.
As Mexico City Bureau Chief, Alfredo covers U.S. policy in Latin America, with a special focus on Mexico and binational issues like migration and drug trafficking.
Mr. Corchado has also written extensively about Cuba, having traveled the island on numerous occasions leading up to the opening of The Morning News’ fulltime Havana bureau – one of the first bureaus for an American print media outlet.
From 2000 to 2003, Alfredo was based in The Morning News’ Washington, D.C. bureau, where he covered binational issues, or what editors called “the Mexico within and the Mexico abroad.”
The Dallas Morning News is the biggest newspaper in the U.S. Southwest and is owned by Belo, which also owns 19 TV stations throughout the country and the TXCN cable news channel.
Mr. Corchado was the lead reporter for the Dallas Morning News in its coverage of the 2000 presidential election in Mexico. He was the first journalist to interview then President Vicente Fox following his historic win. Mr. Corchado also participated in projects including, “The Mexicanization of the United States” and the “Disappearing Border.”
Additionally, Mr. Corchado has written extensively on Cuba. He was part of a team that helped open one of only two bureaus for U.S. news organizations in Cuba and has traveled the country extensively, covering everything from religion on the island to youth attitudes about Fidel Castro and his legacy.
Before joining The Morning News, Mr. Corchado worked for the Ogden Standard-Examiner in Ogden, Utah, El Paso Herald-Post and the Wall Street Journal in its Philadelphia and Dallas bureaus.
Late in 2003, Mr. Corchado began his coverage of a string of unsolved killing of women in the border town of Ciudad Juarez, across El Paso, Texas. In his investigation, Mr. Corchado uncovered the role of drug cartels into some of these killings. He also discovered another startling story: An informant of the U.S. government took part in the killing – -under orders of the powerful Juarez drug cartel – of suspected drug traffickers whose bodies were buried in the backyard of a home in Ciudad Juarez.
His reporting led to an internal U.S. inquiry and the removal of heads of the Immigration Customs Enforcement agency.
In 2005, his reporting on drug violence led him to the Nuevo Laredo-Laredo border and the discovery of crimes committed in Texas cities under the order of Mexican drug cartels and the paramilitary group known as the Zetas. His reporting in Mexico has led to several death threats.
His work also earned the Dallas Morning News a finalist award from the Center for Public Integrity in Washington.
He is a 1987 graduate of the University of Texas at El Paso and El Paso Community College.
Mr. Corchado is a 2007 Maria Moors Cabot winner awarded by the University of Columbia.
He is a 2009 Nieman Fellow at Harvard University.

Trita Parsi

Dr. Trita Parsi is the author of Treacherous Alliance – The Secret Dealings of Iran, Israel and the United States (Yale University Press, 2007), recipient of the Council on Foreign Relation’s 2008 Arthur Ross Silver Medallion.

Trita Parsi is founder and president of the National Iranian American Council and an expert on US-Iranian relations, Iranian politics, and the balance of power in the Middle East. He is the author of Treacherous Alliance: The Secret Dealings of Iran, Israel and the United States (Yale University Press 2007), for which he conducted more than 130 interviews with senior Israeli, Iranian and American decision-makers. Treacherous Alliance is the silver medal winner of the 2008 Arthur Ross Book Award from the Council on Foreign Relations.

Parsi was born in Iran but moved with his family at the age of four to Sweden in order to escape political repression in Iran. His father was an outspoken academic and non-Muslim who was jailed by the Shah and then by the Ayatollah. He moved to the United States as an adult and studied foreign policy at Johns Hopkins’ School for Advanced International Studies where he received his Ph.D. He founded NIAC to provide a non-partisan, non-profit organization through which Iranian-Americans could participate in American civic life. NIAC is a vocal proponent of dialogue and engagement between the US and Iran, which Parsi consistently has argued would enhance our national security by helping to stabilize the Middle East and bolster the moderates in Iran.

Parsi has followed Middle East politics through work in the field and extensive experience on Capitol Hill and at the United Nations. He is frequently consulted by Western and Asian governments on foreign policy matters. Parsi has worked for the Swedish Permanent Mission to the UN, where he served in the Security Council, handling the affairs of Afghanistan, Iraq, Tajikistan and Western Sahara, and in the General Assembly’s Third Committee, addressing human rights in Iran, Afghanistan, Myanmar and Iraq.

Parsi studied for his Doctoral thesis on Israeli-Iranian relations under Professor Francis Fukuyama at Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies. In addition to his PhD, he holds a Master’s Degree in International Relations from Uppsala University and a Master’s Degree in Economics from the Stockholm School of Economics. He has served as an adjunct professor of International Relations at Johns Hopkins University SAIS. He is currently an adjunct scholar at the Middle East Institute.

He is fluent in Persian/Farsi, English, and Swedish. Parsi’s articles on Middle East affairs have been published in the Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Jane’s Intelligence Review, the Nation, The American Conservative, the Jerusalem Post, The Forward, and others. He is a frequent guest on CNN, PBS’s Newshour with Jim Lehrer, NPR, the BBC, and Al Jazeera.

S. Fred Starr

S. Frederick Starr
Chairman of the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute; Research Professor

Expertise by Geographic Area:
Afghanistan; Central Asia and The Caucasus; RUSSIA AND THE FORMER SOVIET UNION

Expertise by Issue:
Developing Nations; Energy Issues; Islamic Religion, Culture and Law; Oil Politics

Background and Education:
Founding chairman of the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute; began work in the Turkic world as an archaeologist in Turkey and went on to found the Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies, which opened U.S. research contact with Central Asia; served as vice president of Tulane University and president of Oberlin College and the Aspen Institute; has advised three U.S. presidents on Russian/Eurasian affairs and chaired external advisory panel on U.S. government-sponsored research on the region; organized and co-authored first comprehensive strategic assessment of Central Asia, the Caucasus and Afghanistan for the Joint Chiefs of Staff in 1999 and has followed up by close involvement in drafting of recent U.S. legislation affecting the region; Ph.D., history, Princeton University

Languages:
Russian

Ambassador Tom Graham

Special Representative of the President for Arms Control, Nonproliferation and Disarmament, 1994 – 1997

Thomas Graham, Jr. is Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors of Thorium Power. He was Special Counsel to the law firm of Morgan Lewis. He participates in the International Energy and Department of Energy practice areas.

Internationally known as one of the leading authorities in the field of arms control agreements to combat the spread of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons, Ambassador Graham has served as a senior US diplomat involved in the negotiation of every major international arms control and non-proliferation agreement for the past 30 years, including The Strategic Arms Limitations Talks (SALT) Treaties, The Strategic Arms Reduction Talks (START) Treaties, the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty, the Intermediate Nuclear Force (INF) Treaty, the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT), the Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty, and the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT).

He has served as Chairman of the Lawyers Alliance for World Security. From 1994-1997, he served as the Special Representative of the President for Arms Control, Nonproliferation and Disarmament, appointed by President Clinton. He served for 15 years as the General Counsel of the US Arms Control and Disarmament Agency (ACDA).

Ambassador Graham also has served as the Acting Director and Acting Deputy Director of ACDA, as Legal Advisor to the US SALT II, START I and START II Delegations, the Senior Arms Control Agency Representative to the US Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces and the Conventional Armed Forces in Europe Delegations, and many others. In addition, Ambassador Graham led US government efforts to indefinitely extend the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty in 1994 and 1995.

He worked on the negotiation of The Chemical Weapon Convention and The Biological Weapons Convention. He drafted the implementing legislation and managed the ratification of the General Protocol banning the use in war of chemical and biological weapons.

Ambassador Graham received a LL.B. from Harvard University in 1961 and an A.B. from Princeton in 1955. He is a member of the Kentucky, District of Columbia and the New York bars and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He chaired the Committee on Arms Control and Disarmament of the American Bar Association from 1986-1994. Ambassador Graham received the Trainor Award for Distinction in Diplomacy from Georgetown University in 1995.

Upcoming Speakers

  • Monday, July 10, 2017
    Anne Garrels
    Topic: Putin Country: The Real Russia
  • Monday, August 7, 2017
    Jennifer Cooke
    Topic: Africa
  • Monday, September 18, 2017
    Juan Cole
    Topic: The Middle East
  • Tentative Date: Monday October 23. Alternate: Monday, October 30
    Ambassador Mike McFaul
    Topic: Russia

Past Speakers