Centennial Fellows Program

In anticipation of the Centennial academic year (2019-2020), the Walsh School of Foreign Service has established a Centennial Fellows Program that will bring thinkers and practitioners to SFS for three purposes: (1) bringing expertise, experience, and guidance to students; (2) enriching the intellectual and scholarly life of SFS; and (3) promoting SFS as a convening place for discussion, debate, and research on theory, policy, and practice in international affairs. Particularly, each of our distinguished fellows will work with a carefully selected group of Junior Centennial Fellows, drawn from both SFS graduate and undergraduate students, to bring unique programming to the community, and holding office hours making them available to any member of the Georgetown community. For student appointments with Centennial Fellows, contact Clare Ogden.

2018-2019 Centennial Fellows

General Wesley Clark headshotGeneral Wesley K. Clark (ret.) – Fall 2018, Spring 2019
Wesley K. Clark is a businessman, educator, writer and commentator. General Clark serves as Chairman and CEO of Wesley K. Clark & Associates, a strategic consulting firm; Chairman and Founder of Enverra, Inc. a licensed investment bank; Senior Fellow at UCLA’s Burkle Center for International Relations. A best-selling author, General Clark has written four books and is a Trustee of the International Crisis Group, and a Director of the Atlantic Council.

Clark retired as a four star general after 38 years in the United States Army. He graduated first in his class at West Point and completed degrees in Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Oxford University (B.A. and M.A.) as a Rhodes scholar. He was the principal author of both the US National Military Strategy and Joint Vision 2010, prescribing US war-fighting for full-spectrum dominance. He also participated with Ambassador Richard Holbrooke in the Dayton Peace Process, and helped write and negotiate significant portions of the 1995 Dayton Peace Agreement. In his last assignment as Supreme Allied Commander Europe he led NATO forces to victory in Operation Allied Force, a 78-day air campaign, backed by ground invasion planning and a diplomatic process, saving 1.5 million Albanians from ethnic cleansing.

His awards include the Presidential Medal of Freedom, honorary knighthoods from the British and Dutch governments, the Department of State Distinguished Service Award and many other honors.

 

Ambassador Jeffrey DeLaurentisAmbassador Jeffrey DeLaurentis (SFS’76) (ret.) – Fall 2018, Spring 2019
Ambassador Jeffrey DeLaurentis comes to Georgetown after a year at the Harvard Kennedy School as a Senior Diplomatic Fellow with the Future of Diplomacy Project. A 27-year veteran of the Foreign Service, he served as the first Charge d’Affaires at the U.S. Embassy in Havana Cuba following the re-establishment of diplomatic relations between the United States and Cuba. Prior to taking up his Cuba post in August 2014, he was the Alternate Representative for Special Political Affairs at the U.S. Mission to the United Nations. Previously, he served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs, and as Minister Counselor for Political Affairs and Security Council Coordinator at the U.S. Mission to the United Nations.

Ambassador DeLaurentis began his State Department career in 1991 as a consular officer in Havana, and returned to Cuba as Political-Economic Section Chief in 1999-2002. In Washington, he served as Executive Assistant to the Under Secretary of State for Democracy and Global Affairs, Special Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs, and Director of Inter-American Affairs at the National Security Council. Ambassador DeLaurentis retired from the State Department in August 2018. He is a graduate of the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service and Columbia University Graduate School of International and Public Affairs. He is married to Jennifer Lee DeLaurentis, a former senior official of the United Nations Secretariat.

 

Scott GuggenheimDr. Scott Guggenheim – Fall 2018
Dr. Scott Guggenheim is an anthropologist with 25 years experience in international development. He is particularly interested in how local knowledge and local voice can be heard in development, and most of his work in development has been about how to reconcile large-scale development with giving poor people more agency in how decisions get made. He’s lived through some tumultuous events, starting with helping Indonesia pick up the pieces after the East Asia crisis and then the Aceh tsunami, to his ongoing work in Afghanistan, where he worked with President Ashraf Ghani and his team on trying to sort through development in a time of conflict.

Scott Guggenheim served as Senior Advisor to Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, where his work was all about putting development and conflict theory into actual practice. He was part of a small team sitting in the President’s Office and the Ministry of Finance which helped President Ghani rebuild (or, more accurately, just build) core systems of government – planning, budgeting, civil service, rule of law – all amidst a pretty bloody conflict that was not getting any better. It was a close-up view not just of conflict or how a poor country develops, but also of the difficulties that even the most visionary and knowledgeable leader faces trying to navigate donor politics, the aid system’s dysfunctionality, inherited histories, and the turbulent political economy of a force-fed and yet basically popular democracy.

 

Azar NafisiDr. Azar Nafisi – Spring 2019
Azar Nafisi is best known as the author of the national bestseller Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books, which electrified its readers with a compassionate and often harrowing portrait of the Islamic revolution in Iran and how it affected one university professor and her students. The book has spent over 117 weeks on The New York Times bestseller list, has been translated in 32 languages, and has won diverse literary awards. In 2009 Reading Lolita in Tehran was named as one of the “100 Best Books of the Decade” by The Times (London).

Between 1997 and 2017, Azar Nafisi was a Fellow at the Foreign Policy Institute of Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) in Washington, DC, where she was a professor of aesthetics, culture, and literature, and taught courses on the relation between culture and politics, she was also Director of The Dialogue Project & Cultural Conversations. She studied in the US in the 1970s and earned her Ph.D. at University of Oklahoma. She returned to Iran and taught at the University of Tehran, and in 1981, she was expelled for refusing to wear the mandatory Islamic veil and did not resume teaching until 1987. Dr. Nafisi returned to the United States in 1997 — earning national respect and international recognition for advocating on behalf of Iran’s intellectuals, youth, and especially young women.

Azar Nafisi has published a children’s book (with illustrator Sophie Benini Pietromarchi) BiBi and the Green Voice (translated into Italian, as BiBi e la voce verde, and Hebrew). She is also the author of Things I’ve Been Silent About: Memories of a Prodigal Daughter, a memoir about her mother. Her most recent book is entitled The Republic of Imagination: America in Three Books (October 2014), a powerful and passionate case for the vital role of fiction in America today. Azar Nafisi’s book on Vladimir Nabokov, That Other World, will be published by Yale University Press in 2019.

 

Catherine NovelliCatherine Novelli – Fall 2018, Spring 2019
Catherine A. Novelli is the President of Listening for America, a non-partisan, non-profit organization dedicated to forging a new vision of U.S. international trade engagement. She previously served as Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment (2014-2017) where she promoted economic reform and open markets for U.S. products and services. As Under Secretary, Ambassador Novelli spearheaded the first-of- its-kind Our Ocean movement, which, during her tenure, resulted in $10 billion for Ocean conservation and has become a continuing global effort. She also launched the Global Connect Initiative, an innovative partnership with governments, multilateral development banks and the private sector to connect 1.5 billion people to the Internet.

Novelli spent seven years as Vice President, Worldwide Government Affairs at Apple Inc, and, previously, was a partner in the law firm of Mayer Brown International. She had a long career at the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, rising to Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Europe & the Mediterranean, where she coordinated U.S. trade and investment policy for Europe, Russia, Central Asia, the Middle East and Northern Africa. She took a leading role in many of the most important U.S. trade negotiations in those regions, including free trade agreements with Jordan, Morocco and Bahrain, and Oman.

Novelli has received the State Department Distinguished Service Award and the International Trade Woman of the Year Award. She is a graduate of Tufts University, holds a law degree from the University of Michigan and a Master of Laws from University of London.

 

2017-2018 Centennial Fellows

Nasser JudehThe Honorable Nasser S. Judeh (SFS’83, P’18) — Fall 2017
Senator Nasser S. Judeh was appointed to the Senate of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan on July 9th, 2017. He served as Minister of Foreign Affairs from 2009 to 2017 as well as Deputy Prime Minister from 2015 to 2017. Upon leaving office on January 15th, 2017, Minister Judeh was the longest serving Foreign Minister in Jordan’s history. Nasser Judeh had previously held cabinet positions serving as Minister of Information (1998 to 1999), Minister of State for Media and Communications (2007 to 2009) and official spokesman for the government of Jordan (1998-1999, 2005 to 2007 and 2007-2009).

During his time in office as Foreign Minister, Judeh helped promote Jordan’s bilateral relations with many countries and participated in numerous regional and international conferences. He presided over the United Nations Security Council several times during Jordan’s two year membership on the Council in 2015 and 2016 Jordan also held the presidency of the 143rd Arab League ministerial council for six months in 2015.

Nasser Judeh worked, and continues to work tirelessly and passionately to address the key challenges facing the Middle East today and the world; the pursuit of peace between Palestinians and Israelis; finding a political solution in war-ravaged Syria and dealing with the danger and threat of radicalization, extremism and global terrorism. In office, he advocated His Majesty King Abdullah’s vision of peace and dialogue on regional and international issues, and in explaining the true message of Islam as a religion of peace and acceptance.

Earlier in his career, Judeh was the Director General of the Jordan Radio and Television Corporation (the national broadcaster) (1994–1998) and served in the Royal Hashemite Court (1985–1992), with His Majesty the late King Hussein’s, and Crown Prince Hassan. He established and directed the Jordan Information Bureau in London 1992-1994.
On September 13, 2017 he was invited by the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres to join the High-Level Advisory Board on Mediation comprising 18 “internationally-recognized personalities who will bring experience and skills, deep knowledge and extensive contacts to this extremely important task”. The new board will contribute to the new initiative proposed by the Secretary General in this regard.

Judeh graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service from the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. Nasser Judeh has four children;  Tariq and Zein el Sharaf (twins born in 1994), Ali (born in 1996) and Sukayna (born in 1998).

 

Richard VermaAmbassador Richard Verma (L’98) — Fall 2017
Richard Verma is Vice Chairman and Partner at The Asia Group and co-chairs the Center for American Progress’ U.S.-India Task Force. He previously served as the U.S. Ambassador to India (2014-2017), where he led one of the largest U.S. diplomatic missions and championed historic progress in bilateral cooperation on defense, trade, and clean energy. Ambassador Verma also oversaw an unprecedented nine meetings between President Obama and Prime Minister Modi – leading to over 100 new initiatives and more than 40 government-to-government dialogues. Ambassador Verma was previously the Assistant Secretary of State for Legislative Affairs and served for many years as the Senior National Security Advisor to the Senate Majority Leader. He was a member of the WMD and Terrorism Commission and a co-author of their landmark report, “World at Risk.” He is a veteran of the U.S. Air Force, and his military decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal and Air Force Commendation Medal. Ambassador Verma is the recipient of the State Department’s Distinguished Service Award, the Council on Foreign Relations International Affairs Fellowship, and was ranked by India Abroad as one of the 50 most influential Indian Americans. He holds degrees from the Georgetown University Law Center (LLM), American University’s Washington College of Law (JD), and Lehigh University (BS).

 

Claudia EscobarClaudia Escobar — Fall 2017
Dr. Claudia Escobar is a former magistrate of the Court of Appeals of Guatemala. Reelected in 2014 to a second term, she resigned due to executive and legislative interference in the judiciary and relocated to the United States owing to intimidation back home. Escobar, was born when the internal armed conflict started in Guatemala. The civil war lasted more than 36 years. Having grown up in a region mark by impunity, corruption and violence, she has dedicated her life to work for the respect of law and justice. She is also a respected legal scholar, who has taught at Guatemalan universities. In addition, she is founder of the Judiciary Institute and the Association for the Development of Democratic Institutionality and Comprehensive Development for Central America – Asociación FIDDI-, two organizations dedicated to promoting the rule of law in Guatemala. Dr. Escobar obtained her Phd at the Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona, her law degree at the Universidad Francisco Marroquín in Guatemala and did college in Louisiana State University. During 2015 – 2016 she was a fellow at Harvard University, becoming the first Central American to be awarded a fellowship at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study.

 

Anne RichardsAnne C. Richard (SFS’82)— Spring 2018
Anne Richard served as the Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugees and Migration in the Obama Administration (2012-2017). Previously, she was Vice President of Government Relations and Advocacy for the International Rescue Committee. In addition to the State Department, she served at Peace Corps Headquarters and the U.S. Office of Management and Budget earlier in her career. She has enjoyed fellowships from the Council on Foreign Relations and the Robert Bosch Stiftung. Ms. Richard is a graduate of Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and has a Master’s degree in Public Policy Studies from the University of Chicago. Since leaving office in January, 2017, she has taught at Georgetown University and been a visiting fellow at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perry World House.