Senior Leadership Fellows

The Senior Leadership Fellows program brings distinguished public sector leaders who have worked at the highest levels of government and promoted, during their time in office, creative and innovative public policies that strengthened the free enterprise system and enhanced individual freedom and human prosperity. These fellows will be in residence at FIU for one semester and will lead not-for-credit seminars and study groups on salient topics based on their experience. They will also participate in talks and other events, be available to meet with and mentor students, and serve as a resource for the entire University community.

The following distinguished public servants will be the Senior Leadership Fellows for the Fall term, 2023.

Senior Leadership Fellows

The Senior Leadership Fellows program brings distinguished public sector leaders who have worked at the highest levels of government and promoted, during their time in office, creative and innovative public policies that strengthened the free enterprise system and enhanced individual freedom and human prosperity. These fellows will be in residence at FIU for one semester and will lead not-for-credit seminars and study groups on salient topics based on their experience. They will also participate in talks and other events, be available to meet with and mentor students, and serve as a resource for the entire University community.

The following distinguished public servants will be the Senior Leadership Fellows for the Spring term, 2023.

Fall 2023 Senior Leadership Fellows

Jamil Mahuad

His Excellency Jamil Mahuad served as the 41st president of Ecuador from 10 August 1998, to 21 January 2000.

President Mahuad is a Nobel Peace Prize Nominee (1999) for negotiating and signing the definitive Peace Treaty with neighbor country Peru, which “Resolved the last and oldest source of international armed conflict in this Hemisphere”, as President William Clinton remarked.

He’s also a recipient to the World Wild Fund ’s Gift to the Earth Award (1999) for his leading example in protecting the tropical rain forest in the Ecuadorian headwaters of the Amazon River

President Mahuad has been Co-Director of the Project on the Prevention of Global Violence, part of the Harvard Institute on Global Health (HIGH), under the office of the President of Harvard University (2009-2011); Co-founder and Senior Adviser of the Harvard International Negotiation Program, at Harvard Law School (2004-Present), Board Member of The Abraham Path Initiative (2008-2018). In April 2014, National Geographic considered the Abraham Path as the world’s number one new walking trail in the Middle East., Member of the Global Advisory Council of Mediators Beyond Borders (2009) and Honorary Board Member of the Adaptive Leadership Network (2017).

He teaches Leadership and Negotiation as part of the Executive Education Faculty, at the Harvard Kennedy School and is a Post Doc Fellow at the Program On Negotiation at Harvard Law School.

President Mahuad has lectured at many world-renowned universities, including the American University of Beirut, University of Tokyo, University of Saint Gallen -Switzerland-, Pontificia Universidad de Salamanca, Sloan School of Management at MIT, Yale University, and Instituto Tecnológico de Monterrey.

He has offered keynote speeches to very diverse audiences like the US Army War College, World Bank Group, YPO Board of Directors in New York, YPO chapters in Bahrain, Beirut, Cairo, Dubai, Kuwait and Pakistan; IBM/Maximo, Congress of American Surgeons, Centro Fox -Mexico-, Third European Mediation Congress -London-, Transforming the Arab World -Doha-, Transformation Thinkers -Berlin-, The Roger Fisher’s Life Tribute -Toronto-, Congress of European Magistrates for the Mediation – Geneva-, CFA Institute –Jordan- and Global Institute for Leadership Development.

President Mahuad is a contributing author to Beyond Reason, (2005) by Roger Fisher and Daniel Shapiro. In 2021 published Así dolarizamos al Ecuador, the best-selling book in Ecuador that year.

Juan Guaidó

His Excellency Juan Guaidó  served as interim President for Venezuela from January 23, 2019 thru January 5, 2023. A widely recognized leader worldwide, he has transcended borders by demonstrating an unwavering commitment to democracy and freedom not only in Venezuela, but throughout the world. With  a background in Industrial Engineering, he has  played roles of paramount relevance in the political arena, including the presidency of the National Assembly and his historic tenure as Interim President of   Venezuela recognized by the free world, during the critical period between January 2019 and January 2023. Through these challenges, he has demonstrated his ability to lead and coordinate actions in the midst of adversity, demonstrating an outstanding capacity to mobilize support nationally and internationally.

His strategic approach and achievements have established him as an influential voice in the search for solutions. His role at the helm of the caretaker government, a bold step that sought to restore democracy and stability in Venezuela, not only demonstrated his commitment to governance and justice, but also his ability to articulate diverse forces in pursuit of a common goal. During his mandate, he strove to rebuild the country’s institutions and preserve democratic values, facing both internal and external challenges with firmness and determination in the face of dictatorship.

He is the founder of the “Voluntad Popular” party and co-author of fundamental laws in Venezuela, such as the Organic Law of Referendums and the Law of Amnesty and National
Reconciliation. His work transcends national borders, having earned him a place in the international community as part of the World Economic Forum’s Young Global Leaders.
Overall, his vision, leadership and extensive experience make him a key player in the development and analysis of committed and transformative perspectives, not only for Venezuela, but for the global political scenario.

Robin Bernstein

Ambassador Robin S. Bernstein (ret.) has served as President of Richard S. Bernstein and Associates, Inc. and Vice President and Director of Rizbur Inc., both of West Palm Beach, Florida since 2004 and 2002 until her appointment as a U.S. Ambassador to the Dominican Republic in 2018 until January 2021. Her over four decades of experience in business, government and the non-profit community have demonstrated proven, dedicated and successful leadership, diplomacy and management. She is highly skilled at crafting and executing business plans, shaping strategic directions, selecting, motivating, working with and leading local, national and international teams, communicating with the media and formulating creative solutions to and, at times, complex or contentious situations. Her vast array of contacts in the areas of international business, political, government and non-profit sectors have enabled her to find solutions for many diverse issues.

Over the course of her career, Ambassador Bernstein has developed extensive experience as an entrepreneur, diplomat, business consultant, insurance and real estate broker and registered representative of numerous companies. She has had the honor of being asked to serve two Presidential Administrations. Most recently, she retired as the U.S. Ambassador to the Dominican Republic. She formerly served at the U.S. Department of Commerce in Washington, D.C. and Presidential transition team under President Jimmy Carter. Her work as an ambassador earned her many awards, most notably the Order of Duarte from the President of the Dominican Republic in 2021. As an Ambassador, she delivered lifesaving mobile hospitals and PPE during Covid, worked closely with the government and private sectors to create new business and investment opportunities, prioritized bilateral education partnerships, brought prenatal vitamins to pregnant women and girls, empowered young women and students, proposed a new sports law to protect student athletes, took down narcotics traffickers and human traffickers, crafted initiatives to counter the influence of anti-democratic countries and led the embassy through two tourist crises that almost crippled the country, to name a few.

Ambassador Bernstein has shown a demonstrated commitment to the non-profit business sectors serving on many boards and councils earning her numerous awards. She was co-founder of Palm Beach County Cares, a Florida relief effort for victims of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean Islands, which delivered over 200,000 pounds of medicine, food, and supplies to the ravaged islands and during also during Hurricane Ian in Florida as well. She serves as an advisory board member of REIcrowd and The Krach Center for Technology Diplomacy at Purdue University and as a proposed Advisory Board of Directors member of SmartCty.

Recently she was a featured speaker at the Puerto Rico Chamber of Commerce Innovation Expo and a keynote speaker at the International Economic Forum of the Americas Conference de Montréal in Montreal, Canada. Ambassador Bernstein earned a double B.A. from American University, School of International Service in Language Area Studies and International Studies as well as an MBA from George Washington University, both in Washington, D.C. She speaks French and intermediate Spanish.

Miomir Žužul

Ambassador Miomir Žužul, PhD is a Senior International Policy Advisor at Arnold Porter LLP. Provides strategic counsel to clients on a wide range of foreign policy issues, including global political and economic matters, North Atlantic Trade Organization (NATO) and European Union activities, and issues at the intersection of business and government. He works with major clients across Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East. Prior to joining the firm, he enjoyed a distinguished career in both diplomacy and the private sector.

He served as Minister of Foreign Affairs of Croatia, and as a member of the Croatian Parliament. He was Ambassador of Croatia to the United States, Organization of American States, Mexico, and to the United Nations in Geneva. He was appointed as the first National Security Advisor in Croatia, and served as the Special Envoy of the President of Croatia for peace talks between 1994 and 1999. In that role, he led negotiations with the international community and was member of the Croatian negotiating team to the Dayton Peace Accords. Ambassador Žužul was Member of the Panel of Eminent Persons for Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), and was the OSCE’s Special Envoy of Chairman-in-Office for the dispute between Georgia and Russia in 2007.

In 2006, Ambassador Žužul founded the first private University in Croatia, DIU Libertas, established under the auspices of the United Nation’s Alliance of Civilizations. He has lectured at numerous Universities in the United States, Europe, Asia, and Latin America, including Harvard University, University of California at Berkeley, Georgetown University, John Hopkins University, American University, Rice University, Institut d’Études Politiques de Paris, King’s College, Sapienza – Università di Roma, and the College of Europe. He spent a year as a Visiting Professor at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. He began his career as a Professor of Psychology at the University of Zagreb. He holds a PhD is Social Psychology, with a particular focus on aggressive behavior.

He served as the President and Strategic Consultant to Four Corners Global Consulting, and the Director of European Business Development for Livingston/Moffett Global Consultants. He was strategic advisor to Deloitte and to Monitor Group, and worked as International Advisor at Squire Patton Boggs LLP.

Ambassador Žužul has authored three books and published several papers and articles, primarily focused on NATO, the Dayton Accords, international conflict and negotiation, and the EU. He has served on numerous Boards, and has received several high distinctions and awards, including Knight of the Sovereign Order of Malta, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. International Service Award, Eisenhower Distinguished Service Award, and the United Nations Human Rights Award.

Spring 2023 Senior Leadership Fellows

Eduardo Frei Ruiz-Tagle

His Excellency Eduardo Frei is a Chilean politician and statesman.  He served as the 31st President of the Republic of Chile.

In 1958, after working in the private sector, he began his political career with the Christian Democratic Party at a very young age.  He was active in his father’s successful presidential campaign in 1964 and participated in the creation of the Eduardo Frei Montalva Foundation, a political and academic institution he chaired until 1993.  After working as an engineer for many years, he was elected in 1989 to the Senate, where he chaired the Finance and Budget Committees.

In 1993, Frei was elected President of the Republic of Chile.  As President, he helped to consolidate democracy in Chile, opened his country to international markets, and made significant improvements in health, education, and poverty reduction.

At the end of his presidential term, he once again became Senator.  He was reelected to the Senate in 2005 and the following year became President of the Senate.  In 2018, he was named President of the Infrastructure Policy Council (CPI), a position he maintains to date.

Frei is a member of the Executive Committee of the Club of Madrid, participates in the Asia-Pacific Political Cooperation Forum, and is frequently invited to speak on various topics in different international forums.

Frei studied at the University of Chile, where he obtained a degree in Civil Engineering with a major in Hydraulics.  He also completed specialization studies in Administration and Management Techniques in Italy.

Álvaro Uribe Vélez

His Excellency Álvaro Uribe Vélez is a Colombian politician and statesman.  He served as the 31st President of the Republic of Colombia.

His dedication to public service began at a very young age.  In 1974, he became city counselor for the city of Salgar and in 1976 was appointed head of the Real Estate Office of the Public Works Department of Medellín.  In 1982, he became Mayor of Medellín and subsequently served as city counselor (1984-1986).  He was elected and served as national Senator twice (1986-1990 and 1990-1994) and Governor of the Department of Antioquia (1995-1997).

In 2002, Uribe launched his winning presidential campaign based on the conviction that a government whose first priority were moral accountability and a strong sense of leadership would most successfully confront Colombia’s biggest challenges.  In 2006, he was re-reelected to a second term by an overwhelming majority.  During his eight years in office, Uribe was responsible for the transformation of Colombia from a country considered by many to be a “failed state,” struggling with limited territorial control and escalating violence, into one of the most thriving and dynamic countries in the hemisphere.  By the time he left office, he enjoyed a 75% approval rating.

Uribe founded the Centro Democrático political party in 2014 and served again as a national Senator (2014-2020).  In 2015, 2016, and 2019, he was honored by his colleagues in Congress as the country’s best Senator.  He continues to be politically active in Colombia.

Uribe is also active internationally.  He has been a Visiting Professor at Georgetown University and Vice-Chairman of the UN panel investigating the Gaza Flotilla Raid.  Additionally, he has been a member of several international advisory boards, including JP Morgan, News Corp, 21st Century Fox, and Concordia.  He continuously speaks worldwide in favor of liberty and democracy.

Uribe holds a degree in law from the Universidad de Antioquia and a post-graduate degree in Management and Administration from Harvard University.

Kiron K. Skinner

Kiron K. Skinner, Ph.D., served as Director of Policy Planning and Senior Adviser to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo at the U.S. Department of State from 2018 to 2019.  In that capacity, she provided long-term, high-level guidance to the Secretary, reengaged the Department in red-team exercises on regional conflicts, developed State-Defense ties in critical areas, and fostered transatlantic partnerships through numerous strategic dialogues, including the first-ever NATO Policy Planners Summit.  She played a central role in creating the Commission on Unalienable Rights and re-chartering the Foreign Affairs Policy Board, and served in the Secretariat of both entities.

Skinner’s public service also include membership on the U.S. Defense Department’s Defense Policy Board (2001–07 and 2017-18); the Eisenhower Commission’s Legacy Committee of historians (2002-03); the Chief of Naval Operations’ (CNO) Executive Panel (2004–2015); the National Academies’ Committee on Behavioral and Social Science Research (2009–11); and the National Security Education Board (2004–11).  She was also appointed to the advisory board of the George W. Bush Oral History Project.

After her most recent government service, Skinner returned to Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) as the Taube Professor of International Relations and Politics and Director of the Institute of Politics and Strategy.  She also resumed the directorship of the Carnegie Mellon University’s Washington Semester Program, the Center for International Relations and Politics, and the Institute for Strategic Analysis.  In addition, Skinner is a Distinguished Fellow at CyLab, a cyber-oriented research center associated with the College of Engineering, and holds courtesy faculty positions at CMU’s Heinz College and the Institute for Software Research.  She is a member of the Artificial Intelligence (AI) faculty community at CMU.

Skinner is also the W. Glenn Campbell Research Fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution, and a visiting fellow at The Heritage Foundation’s Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy and senior advisor to the President.  Her work at Heritage focuses on analyzing the impact of cutting-edge technology—including AI, quantum science, and a host of other breakthroughs—on foreign policy and national security.

She is the author or editor of seven books, two of which (Reagan, In His Own Hand and Reagan, A Life in Letters) were New York Times best sellers.  She is the editor of a new Palgrave MacMillan series on American political ideology.  Skinner is a lifetime director on the board of the Atlantic Council in Washington, D.C., and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations in New York City and the Pacific Council on International Policy in Los Angeles.  She holds MA and Ph.D. degrees in political science from Harvard University and undergraduate degrees from Spelman College and Sacramento City College.  She has an honorary doctor of law degree from Molloy College, Long Island.

Fawzia Koofi

Fawzia Koofi is an Afghan politician and human rights advocate.  She served as Vice President of the National Assembly of Afghanistan.  She was also a member of the peace negotiation team in Doha.

Ms. Koofi’s family background and interest in public service propelled her to pave the road for many women.  After completing her baccalaureate degree, she entered a competitive medical school.  However, soon after the Taliban took over her country in 1995, they barred women from access to education, so she focused her energy on women’s rights organizations and worked closely with vulnerable groups, such as internally displaced people and marginalized women and children.  She also worked with UNICEF on women’s and children’s rights.

She decided to run for Parliament from the Badakhshan province and was elected in 2005 to the first democratically-elected parliament in 33 years.  She was also elected as the first woman Deputy Speaker of Parliament in the history of Afghanistan.  She successfully ran for reelection.  She chaired Parliament’s standing committee on women and human rights.  She was also a member and President of the Inter-Parliamentary Union’s Committee on Human Rights from 2016-2019.  Some of the key initiatives that she championed include the improvement of women’s living conditions in Afghan prisons, preventing violence against women and children, promoting women’s and girls’ access to education, creating opportunities for non-formal education for out-of-school children, and ensuring the protection of human rights for all citizens.

Ms. Koofi is the leader of a newly-established political party in Afghanistan, Movement for Change.  In 2021, the Taliban put her under house arrest as soon as they captured Kabul, but she eventually managed to flee the country.  Since then, she has traveled across the world to meet world leaders, human rights organizations, and civil society activists to keep the focus on Afghanistan, especially the repression of women and girls.  She continues to advocate for full protection of women’s rights and warns world leaders of the security consequences of ignoring the situation in Afghanistan.  She was recently nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Ms. Koofi is the author of The Favored Daughter: One Woman’s Fight to Lead Afghanistan into the Future (originally published as Letters to my Daughters).  She has been recognized as one of BBC 100 Women, Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum, the Fearless Mind by Times Magazine, 50 Great Leaders by Fortune Magazine, and has received many prestigious international awards.

Ms. Koofi holds a bachelor’s degree from Kabul University’s Law and Political Science faculty and a Master’s degree in International Relations and Human Rights from the Geneva School of Diplomacy.

Fall 2022 Senior Leadership Fellows

Iván Duque Márquez

His Excellency Iván Duque Márquez is a Colombian politician, statesman, and author. He served as President of the Republic of Colombia from 2018 to 2022. He also served as Senator from 2014 to 2018. Previously, he was a senior advisor for Colombia at the Inter-American Development Bank and worked in Colombia’s Finance and Public Credit Ministry.

President Duque is a distinguished thought leader who led his country in defending democracy, protecting biodiversity, facing the pandemic, and offering safe haven to millions of displaced people escaping the regime in Venezuela. He is recognized around the world as a great promoter of climate action and sustainable development.

He is the author of several books: IndignAcción, Ideas for the Colombia of the Future; Monetary Sins; Machiavelli in Colombia; Orange Effect; The Future is in the Center; My Father’s Archeology; Humanism Matters; Road to Zero; and Es con Hechos (a balance of his government).

He holds a law degree from the University of Sergio Arboleda, a master’s degree in international economic law from American University, and a master’s degree in public administration from Georgetown University.

Ava Rossana Guevara

Her Excellency Ava Rossana Guevara is a Honduran former politician, diplomat, and journalist. She served as Vice President of the Republic of Honduras from 2014 to 2018. She also served as the first Ambassador of Honduras in Italy (2010 -2011) and in Brazil (2011- 2012).

Before she graduated as a journalist from the National Autonomous University of Honduras, she worked at La Tribuna Newspaper. She then entered the world of international journalism and worked at ABC News, NBC News, and Univision. She was also news Director, Producer, and Anchor of several television media outlets in Honduras, where she known as a loyal and firm defender of the rights of the silent Honduran majorities and the indigenous and Afro-descendant groups, as well as for her constant criticism of corruption and impunity in her country. She was recognized in 2007 with the highest award in National Journalism in Honduras and with UNICEF’s National Press Awards (1991 and 1993).

Her greatest desire is the transformation of Honduras so that all citizens can enjoy social justice, equity, peace, true democracy, and freedom.

Paula J. Dobriansky

The Honorable Paula J. Dobriansky is an American former diplomat and national security expert with over 30 years of government and international experience across senior levels of diplomacy, business, and defense. She served as United States Under Secretary of State for Global Affairs from 2001 to 2009. She was also head of delegation and lead negotiator on U.S. climate change policy and the President’s Envoy to Northern Ireland. Her previous senior government positions include Director of European and Soviet Affairs at the National Security Council and Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs.

Ambassador Dobriansky is currently a Senior Fellow at Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and Vice Chair of the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security (Atlantic Council). From 2010 to 2012, she was Senior Vice President and Global Head of Government and Regulatory Affairs at Thomson Reuters. During this time, she was appointed the Distinguished National Security Chair at the U.S. Naval Academy. From 1997 to 2001, she served as Senior Vice President and Director of the Washington Office of the Council on Foreign Relations and was the first George F. Kennan Senior Fellow for Russian and Eurasian Studies.

She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the American Academy of Diplomacy, and has served on the Defense Policy Board, the Secretary of State’s Foreign Affairs Policy Board, and as Chair of EXIM Bank’s Chairman’s Council on China Competition (C4). She received a B.S.F.S. summa cum laude from Georgetown University School of Foreign Service and a M.A. and Ph.D. in Soviet political/military affairs from Harvard University.

Spring 2022 Senior Leadership Fellows

Mauricio Macri

His Excellency Mauricio Macri served as President of the Argentine Republic from 2015 to 2019. He was also twice the mayor of the City of Buenos Aires and served as the city’s national deputy, as well as president of the Boca Juniors Soccer Club. He was twice named one of TIME magazine’s 100 most influential people in the world, in 2016 and in 2018.

In 2015, breaking with 70 years of two-party dominance in Argentina, Macri became President of a country on the verge of economic collapse. Despite not having a majority in Congress, he worked towards Argentina’s institutional transformation by implementing several measures to strengthen the country’s institutions, guarantee the independence of the different branches of government, and ensure transparency in governmental affairs. His government also carried out an ambitious transformation of the country’s infrastructure and energy matrix, connecting the country physically and virtually, and prioritizing solar and wind power. He also strengthened Argentina’s integration into the world and the opening of international markets.

Macri is currently the Executive Chairman of the FIFA Foundation, where he combines his three passions: education, football, and working to forge a brighter future for young people. Author of Primer Tiempo, a book that shares his reflections on the presidency, he also leads the Macri Foundation, where he works on issues for the future of Argentina: education, innovation with social impact; and the environment.

Macri has received the Collar of the Order of Isabel la Católica, granted by King Felipe VI of Spain; the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honor, awarded by France; Knight with Grand Cross with Collar of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic; and the Grand Cross of the Mexican Order of the Aztec Eagle, among other international distinctions. In 2019, he was awarded the “Living Football Award” by FIFA, given to outstanding figures for their actions in the development of soccer. He holds a degree in civil engineering from the Pontifical Catholic University of Argentina and attended Columbia University for business school.

Raúl Melara Morán

His Excellency Raúl Melara Morán served as Attorney General of the Republic of El Salvador from 2019 to 2021.  In that role, he was constitutionally charged with defending the interests of the state and society.  Prior to that, he served as Alternate Magistrate of the Supreme Court of Justice (one of the highest judicial positions in the country) and Executive Director of the National Association of Private Enterprise (the largest and most prestigious business association in El Salvador).

Melara’s experiences in the public and private sectors have allowed him to understand the social and political panorama of Central America in a comprehensive manner, with a particular emphasis on the importance of the rule of law in the region.  During his time as Attorney General, he focused on the development of sustainable projects with high national impact, such as the fight against organized crime, disappearances, and corruption; the mitigation of forced migration; and the attention to vulnerable sectors of society.  He also has worked on the development of programs for micro, small, and medium entrepreneurs; violence prevention; and the elimination of child labor, among other social programs.

Melara holds multiple degrees in law, including a Doctorate in Law and Masters in Legal Research from the Autonomous University of Barcelona (Spain), a Masters in Telecommunications Law and Information Technology from Comillas Pontifical University, ICADE (Spain), and a Doctorate in Private Law and Bachelor in Law from Dr. José Matías Delgado University (El Salvador).

Nicolás Monckeberg Díaz

His Excellency Nicolás Monckeberg Díaz began his political career at the age of 22 when he was elected Councilor and Deputy Mayor of the City of Santiago.  He later served as Congressman for sixteen years in the Chilean National Congress and became President of the Chamber of Deputies.  Most recently, he served as Minister of Labor and Social Security (2018-2019) and Ambassador of Chile in Argentina (2019-2022).

Monckeberg is the author of several bills, including one that extended maternity protection to women in Chile and one that implemented regulations for working hours in commerce.  As Chairman of the Chamber of Deputies, he promoted educational programs and lectures in Chilean prisons, and championed several inclusion initiatives, such as the integration of people with down syndrome into the Chamber.

Monckeberg was recognized by his peers in Congress as the best prosecutor, and was nominated as one of the 100 Global Young Leaders by the World Economic Forum.  He has published three books: La Niña del Carretón, Parliamentary Annotations of Labor Reform and most recently, the social novel 25 years and One day.

Monckeberg holds a Doctorate in Public Governance from the University of Salamanca, Spain.  He is married to journalist and singer Isabel Margarita Cruz. They have three daughters and one son, with whom he shares his hobby for singing, the outdoor sports, and soccer.

Loretta Sánchez

The Honorable Loretta Sánchez served for two decades, from 1997 until 2017, as a member of the United States Congress, representing Orange County, CA.  She was a member of several key Congressional Committees, including Armed Services, Homeland Security, Education and Labor, and the Joint Economic Committee of the Senate and House.  She also served as Chairwoman of several subcommittees, including Border and Maritime Security, Land and Air Tactical, Strategic Forces, and Emerging Threats and Capabilities.  In those roles, she negotiated budgets, provided oversight of agencies and programs, and assisted in developing policies associated with treaties.  She is a recognized leader in international affairs, national security, counterterrorism, and nuclear proliferation/nonproliferation matters.

Sanchez led efforts on educational attainment for all, small business regulatory reform, healthcare initiatives, and technology innovation.  She funded the expansion of preschool programs for children, championed the construction of the largest water recycling project in the world (in Orange County), and directed research funding to universities in her area to help develop a BioMed industry.  As a 2018 Advanced Leadership Fellow at Harvard University, she developed a business model to increase the supply of affordable housing in Southern California through vocational training of “second chance” young adults to build Auxiliary Dwelling Units.

Sanchez holds a BSBA in Economics from Chapman University, where she is a Trustee, and an MBA from The Kogod Business School at American University.  She sits on various corporate and non-profit boards and consults to many international clients.  She speaks several languages and has lived in different countries around the world.

Fall 2021 Senior Leadership Fellows

Lenín Moreno Garcés

Lenín Moreno GarcésHis Excellency Lenín Moreno Garcés is an Ecuadorian politician, disabilities advocate, and author. He served as the 46th President of the Republic of Ecuador from May 2017 to May 2021. Prior to his election as President, he served as Vice President from 2007 to 2013, receiving international recognition for his support of policies that improved the lives of people with disabilities in Ecuador. For that work, he was nominated for the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize and was appointed in 2013 as Special Envoy on Disability and Accessibility by the United Nations Secretary General.

An avowed Democratic Socialist for most of his life, Moreno drastically shifted his political and policy outlook when he became President and faced the realities of governing, distancing himself from his predecessor’s Socialist legacy and making neoliberal changes to both domestic and foreign policy and implementing free market reforms.

Moreno is a prolific writer, commentator, and author of several books on the theory of humor. He has won numerous national and international awards for his advocacy work. He holds a degree in Public Administration from the Central University of Ecuador and various honorary degrees from universities around the world.

Francisco Santos Calderón

Francisco Santos CalderónHis Excellency Francisco Santos Calderón is a Colombian politician, human rights advocate, and journalist. He was elected Vice President of the Republic of Colombia in 2002 and re-elected in 2006. As Vice President, Santos led Colombia’s international promotion of trade, investment, and tourism, and promoted policies to combat corruption, extortion, and kidnapping. He also served as Colombian Ambassador to the United States from September 2018 until July 2021.

In 1990, Santos was kidnapped by the Medellín Cartel. He was released after eight months in captivity and went on to become an effective advocate for human rights in Colombia, creating the world’s first NGO dedicated to fighting kidnapping, Fundación País Libre (Free Country Foundation). Santos promoted the Anti-Kidnapping Statute, the only law enacted by public petition via signature collection in Colombia. He is also an outspoken advocate for democracy and civic engagement in Latin America and is the founder of Fundación Confianza Colombia (Trust Colombia Foundation).

Santos has held several editorial positions at major newspapers in Colombia and Spain. He completed studies at the University of Kansas at Lawrence and at the University of Texas at Austin, earning a degree in Journalism and Latin American Studies. He also completed a prestigious fellowship at Harvard University.

Ileana Ros-Lehtinen

The Honorable Ileana Ros-Lehtinen is an American politician, consultant, and educator. She served for almost three decades, from 1989 until 2019, as a member of the United States Congress, representing South Florida. She was the Chairwoman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs and the Chairwoman of the Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa. She also served on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and was a member of the CIA Subcommittee and the National Security Agency and Cybersecurity Subcommittee.

In these roles, she led on pressing foreign policy issues, including championing the advancement of freedom, democracy, and capitalism around the world; fighting against tyranny and oppression, particularly in her native Cuba; combatting Islamist extremism and strengthening the U.S.-Israel strategic partnership; imposing sanctions on human rights violators; and supporting free trade agreements.

Ros-Lehtinen holds multiple degrees in Education, including a doctorate from the University of Miami, master’s and bachelor’s degrees from Florida International University, and an associate’s degree from Miami Dade College. She began her career as a Florida certified teacher, and then founded and served as the principal of a private bilingual elementary school. She was the first Latina elected to the U.S. Congress, as well as to the State of Florida House of Representatives and Senate.

Alex Almazán

Attorney, USA

Javier Cárdenas

Business Executive, Colombia

Paula J. Dobriansky

Former Diplomat and National Security Expert, USA

Giulliano Lopresti

Business Entrepreneur, Mexico

Ileana Ros-Lehtinen

Former Member of Congress, USA

Martin J. Silverstein

Diplomat and Attorney, USA

David Webb

Media Entrepreneur, USA