October 17, 2017


Past Programs

Birmingham Committee on Foreign Relations
2002 - 2016 Program Years

May 2016
George F. Paik
Managing Director at Lord Capital, LLC,
former Political Affairs Officer in the U. S. Foreign Service
and a twenty year veteran of U. S. Capital Markets
“Freedom’s Strategic Logic: Preparing Today’s Foreign Service for Today’s Challenges”

April 2016
Hamid Arsalan
Program Officer, National Endowment for Democracy
Assessing Afghanistan 15 Years After 9/11”

March 2016
Hannon Thoburn
Research Fellow at the Hudson Institute
where she focuses on Eastern European politics
and the transatlantic relationship

February 2016
Sikyong, Dr. Lobsang Sangay
Successor to the Dalai Lama

January 2016
Kilic Bugra Kanat
Research Director at the SETA Foundation at Washington D. C.
and Assistant Professor of Political Science at Penn State

December 2015
Geoffrey Harris
Deputy Head of the European Parliament Liaison Office
with the US Congress at European Parliament
European Refugee and Migration Crisis

November 2015
Dr. Scott C. Colby
Financial and Insurance Consultant
with a Ph.D. in Chinese history from Columbia University
“The Pro-Democracy Demonstrations in Hong Kong in 2015”

October 2015
Luke Coffey

The Margaret Thatcher Fellow at The Heritage Foundation focusing on defense and security matters, including the role of NATO and the European Union in transatlantic and Eurasian security.
“Transatlantic Security Matters”

September 2015
Abdulwahab Alkebsi
Regional Director for Middle East and Africa Programs
at the Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE)
“Historic and Political Reasons for the Rise of Islamic Extremism”

May 2015
Ron Slump
“The Ukraine"

April 2015
William Hill
Public Policy Scholar, Wilson Center
Victoria Smolkin
Rothrock, Research Scholar, Kennan Institute
“Foreign Policy Issues” & “Russian Motives / History"

April 2015

ACFR 2Oth Annual Confence

March 2015
His Excellency Ambassador Yasuo Saito
Formerly served as the Ambassador of Japan
to Saudi Arabia, Russia, and France
Also served as Consul General in Atlanta
and as the Japanese Government Representative to UNESCO
Currently serves as an adviser to private companies and as the Executive Board Member of the Japanese Olympic Committee
"Walk in U.S., Talk on Japan"

February 2015
Tom Barrett, VP at International Republican Institute
“Tunisia and The Middle East After the Arab Spring”

January 2015
Lisa Curtis
Senior Research Fellow for the Asian Studies Center, the Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy at The Heritage Foundation
“An Opportunity to Reenergize U.S. India Relations”

December 2014
Erich Frankland
Member of the Political Science and History faculties
at Casper College in Casper, Wyoming
Chair of the Political Science Department
and Director of the International Studies Program

“An Opportunity to Reenergize U.S. India Relations”

November 2014
Jose Cárdenas
Associate with Vision Americas, with two decades of experience in the Washington political process and inter-American relations.
Served in senior positions in the U.S. Department of State,
the National Security Council, and
the U.S. Agency for International Development
“Mexico and Immigration Issues”

October 2014
Dr. Charles E. (Chuck) Ziegler
Louisville CFR Director,
Professor and Distinguished University Scholar
Specialist on the domestic, foreign and security policies
of Russian and Eurasia
“Putin Comes to Shove: Pushing Back in Ukraine”

September 2014
Brian Katulis
Senior Fellow at American Progress
Expertise: National Security, Middle East Politics, and Terrorism
“U. S. Middle East Policy at a Time of Regional Fragmentation and Competition”

May 2014
James Clad
Senior Adviser at the Center for Naval Analyses (CNA) in Arlington, Virginia.
Advisor to IHS Jane's and Cambridge Energy Research Associates (CERA)
Former U. S. deputy assistant secretary of defense for Asia
Senior Counselor and Director for Middle Eastern affairs
at the Overseas Private Investment Corporation
Senior Counselor at the Agency for International Development
The World Politics of a Changing Energy Landscape

April 2014
Dean Cheng
Senior Research Fellow for the Asian Study Center

March 2014
Frederick Fleitz
Senior Fellow with the Center for Security Policy
and Chief Analyst and founder of LIGNET.com (Langley Intelligence Group Network)
Served 25 years with the Central Intelligence Agency, Defense Intelligence Agency, Department of State and the U. S. House of Representatives Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (most of his career focused on multilateral diplomacy)

March 2014 Special Dinner Lecture
Ambassador David Dunford
Served 29 years in the U. S. Foreign Service
Worked for General Garner and Ambassador Bremer in Iraq during 2003 as the Senior Official in charge of reorganizing the Iraq’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs

January 2014
Dorothy Douglas Taft
Principal, The Tantallon Group, LLC
Served as Director of the Office of Democracy and Governance
US Agency for International Development and Chief of Staff / Deputy Chief of Staff
of the US Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, Washington D.C.

December 2013
Christian P. Whiton
Principal, D. C. International Advisory Group
Author of Smart Power: Between Diplomacy and War
Smart Power: Between Diplomacy and War


November 2013
Charlotte “Charlie” Ponticello
Programs Director And Advisor For
American Committee on Foreign Relations
“Women In Afghanistan”

October 2013
Ambassador Thomas Graham

The International Non-Proliferation Regime:
Nuclear Weapon Danger: Iran and North Korea

September 2013
Mr. Henry (“Hank”) Levine
Senior Director of Albright Stonebridge Group
“China – A Rising Power Meets the U.S. and the World”

June 2013
BCFR Members Michael Calvert and Cheryl Williams
“Our Study Trip to Cuba with the
American Committees on Foreign Relations”

May 2013
Ambassador Molly Williamson
Scholar with the Middle East Institute
“The Global Politics of Oil”

April 2013
Dr. David Ottaway
Senior Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson Center
“Saudi Arabia’s Race Against Time”

March 2013
Ambassador Vicki J. Huddleston
Former Ambassador to Mali and Madagascar and
U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for African Affairs

February 2013
Ambassador Priscilla Clapp
Retired Minister-Counselor in the U. S. Foreign Service
“Reforms in Burma: Opportunities, Challenges and
How the U.S. is Helping”

January 2013
Nicholas Kralev
Author and former Washington Times correspondent
"America’s Other Army: U. S. Foreign Service and 21st Century Diplomacy”

December 2012
Professor Brian Norris
"Dinosaurs and Bureaucrats: Mexican Politics Today"

November 2012
Colonel Robert M. Cassidy
"The Wars in Afghanistan and Pakistan:
The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly"

October 2012
Pamela Constable
Former Deputy Foreign Editor at The Washington Post
"Playing with Fire: Pakistan at War With Itself"

September 2012
Elizabeth O. Colton, Ph.D.
Operations Manager American Committees on Foreign Relations Washington, D. C.
"The Upcoming Presidential Election And Foreign Policy Challenges"

May 2012
Dr. George Herring
Professor Emeritus
Looking Back, Thinking Ahead: A Historical Perspective on U.S. Foreign Policy

April 2012
Peggy Orchowski
Congressional Correspondent in Washington DC for the
Hispanic Outlook on Higher Education

Immigration and the American Dream: Battling the Political Hype and Hysteria

March 2012
Lawrence A. Husick
Senior Fellow, Center on Terrorism, Counter-Terrorism,
and Homeland Security, Foreign Policy Research Institute
Adjunct Professor, Organizational Dynamics Masters Program
Cyber-Terrorism: The Next Threat to National Security
and What We Can Do About It.

February 2012
Dr. Cynthia Watson
What’s Burning? Immediate International Priorities in 2012

January 2012
John Rosenthal
Islamic Extremism: How Potent is the Threat?

November 2011
Ambassador Hays
Changes in Cuba: How Should the United States Respond

October 2011
Paula Tkac
Vice President and Senior Economist,
Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta
Understanding the World Financial and Economic Crisis We are Living Through

September 2011
Dr. Lamont Colucci
Assistant Professor of Politics and Government, Ripon College
Coordinator, National Security Studies Program

Clinton, Bush and Obama: Contrasting National
Security Strategies and Finding a Way Forward

April 2011
Ambassador Kenneth Brill
Fund for Peace; Director of the Office of Egyptian Affairs
Whither Egypt

March 2011
Christiane Hohmann
Political Counselor, Embassy of Germany to the United States
Current Events In Northern Africa (Libya, Tunisia And Egypt) And Their Possible Effects On Our Foreign Policy And The Economic Recovery

February 2011
Vanda Felbab Brown
Foreign Policy Fellow, Brookings Institute
Shooting Up: Narcoterrorism from Latin America to Africa

January 2011
Dr. John A. Ritchie
Liaison for the State Department to Congress on Immigration issues (2008, 2009, 2010)
Former Coordinator, U.S.-Mexico Border Affairs (2004-06)
US Consul General, Monterrey, Mexico, (2001–04)

December 2010
Dr. Robert Haffa, Jr.
Director, Analysis Center
Northrop Grumman Corporation
Colonel (Retired) U.S. Air Force
Ready for a Surprise in Space?

October 2010
IPaul Marshall
Senior Fellow, The Hudson Institute
Should the U.S. Have an Ambassador to Islam?

April 2010
Iain Murray
Director of Projects and Analysis and Senior Fellow in Energy,
Science and Technology at the Center for Economic Enterprise
The Failure of Copenhagen: What Next for Global and Climate and Energy Negotiations?

March 2010
Ambassador Robert P. Finn
Lecturer in the Department of Near Eastern Studies, Princeton University
Senior Research Associate, Liechtenstein Institute
Afghanistan’s Clouded Future

February 2010
Dr. Bernard D. Cole
Professor, National War College
China’s Strategic Priorities

January 2010
John ReppertBrigadier General (retired)
“The Arc of Stability: Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan”

December 2009
Dr. Lutz Hermann Görgens
German Consul General
“The Berlin Wall: The Rise/The Fall and the Aftermath”

November 2009
Michael Cutler
Amnesty and the Nexus between Immigration and National Security

October 2009
Dr. Robert H. Donaldson
The US, Russia, and NATO: Why ‘Reset’ is not Enough

September 2009
Gustavo Coronel
Venezuela: From an Authoritarian
Petrostate to Narcostate

April 2009

Martin Rickerd OBE MVO
The Challenges and Opportunities
for the International Economy

March 2009
Dr. Roy Stafford
The Hopes for the Obama Foreign Policy
from a European Perspective

February 2009
Ambassador Robin Raphel
"Women and Leadership in the
Evolving 21st Century World”

January 2009
James Goldgeier
"Liberal Legacies and Conservative
Conundrums: American Foreign Policy
in the Next Administration"

November 2008
Herman “Hank” J. Cohen
Africa: Is There a Light at the End of the Tunnel?

October 2008
Ambassador Alphonse F. La Porta
The Challenges of Stability in
Southeast Asia: Radical Islam and
National Integrity

September 2008
Dr. Thomas Bagger
United Europe –
A Legacy of U.S. Foreign Policy?

March 2008
Adam Ward
The Strategic Implications of China's Rise

February 2008
Robert "Dobie" Langenkamp
Inconvenient Truths Redax: Questions Not Being Answered by our Presidential Candidates

January 2008
Mr. Geoffrey Nyarota
How the International Community Contributed to the Failure of Zimbabwe

December 2007
Professor Randall Law
Lessons from the History of Terrorism

September 2007
Professor Alan Lee Williams
Transatlantic Convergence or Divergence: NATO-EU-UK

June 2007
Christopher N. Smith
Attorney at Law and Honorary Consul of the Kingdom of Denmark
"Export Now!"

May 2007

Ms. Nidra Poller
Paris Editor of Pajamas Media and novelist
"French Presidential Elections: All is Not Won!"

April 2007
The Hon. William J. Cabaniss, Jr.
Former U.S. Ambassador to the Czech Republic
"My Experience as Ambassador to the Czech Republic"

March 2007
Fred Charles Ikle
Former Undersecretary of Defense
"Annihilation from Within: The Ultimate Threat to Nations"

February 2007

Mr. Jeremy Martin
Director, Energy Program, Institute of the Americas
Latin America

January 2007
Mr. Scott Bates
Vice-President and Sr. Fellow
for National Security Policy in Washington, D.C.
New Approaches to Defending the U.S. From Terrorist Attack

December 2006
Martin Rickerd,
UK Consul General
Tackling the Big Issues - Some Priorities for British Global Policy

November 2006

Mr. Barry C. Lynn, Sr.
Fellow, the New America Foundation
"End of the Line: The Rise and Coming Fall of the Global Corporation"

October, 2006

"The American Interest" (quarterly publication) comes to Birmingham
to be announced

September 2006
Mr. Steven C. Clemons
Sr. Fellow and Director, American Strategy Program,
The new America Foundation
"Pulling America's Head Out of the Sand:
Thoughts on Transforming Crisis and Convulsion into Stability in the Middle East

June 2006
Mr. Edward G. Abington
Senior Associate, Bannerman & Associates, Inc.
"After the Israeli and Palestinian Elections: What Chance for Peace?"

May 2006

Dr. Jay C. Davis
Non-Proliferation: Iran and North Korea

April 2006
Mr. John O'Sullivan
Editor-in-Chief, United Press International
Europe, America and the Permanent Crisis

March 2006
Mark Brzezinski
Member, Council on Foreign Relations Task Force
U.S. Policy Towards Russia - Task Force Report

February 2006
Gordon G. Chang
Author and Lecturer
North Korea and China - A Take on the World

January 2006

Mr. John O'Sullivan
Editor-in-Chief, United Press International
Europe, America and the Permanent Crisis

December 2005
Michael J. Dziedzic
Retired USAF Colonel
Rebuilding Societies in Post-War Settings

November 2005
Leslie S. Lebl
Former Minister-Counselor for Political Affairs, U.S. Mission to the European Union in Brussels
The U.S., the European Union and the Greater Middle East

October 2005
Alan Tonelson
Research Fellow at the U.S. Business and Industry Council Educational Foundation
"Globalization and U.S. Trade Issues."

September 2005

Valerie J. McNevin, Esq.
E-Finance, E-Security Specialist in the Financial Sector Operations
and Division Vice-President at the World Bank
Rethinking Intelligence: How the New Methods of Financing Terrorism
are Changing and Challenging Us."

June 2005
Major General Jim Darden (USA-Ret)
"Europe and Africa"

May 2005

Alan D. Romberg
Former Principal Deputy Director of Policy Planning Staff, Department of State
"China-Taiwan and U.S. Relations"

April 2005
Major General Carl H. Freeman (USA-Ret)
Former Chairman, Inter-American Defense Board and
President, Inter-American Defense College
"The Challenges of Security Cooperation in the Americas Post 9-11"

March 2005

Christopher Kojm
Former Deputy Executive Director of the 911 Commission
"Preparedness in the Face of Terrorist Threats"

February 2005

Ambassador Edward Masters
Co-Chairman of The United States-Indonesia Society
"Can Indonesia's Infant Democracy Survive the Tsunami?"

January 2005
Ambassador William J. Cabaniss
U.S. Ambassador to the Czech Republic
"Central Europe-Growth and Democracy"

December 2004
Mr. John Clark
Senior Research Fellow
Sagamore Institute for Policy Research
"China and U.S. Policy"

November 2004

Dr. Rachel Ehrenfeld
Director of the New York based
American Center for Democracy
"Financing Terrorism"

October 2004

Ambassador Phillip C. Wilcox, Jr.
Foundation for Middle East Peace
"Israel and Palestine: Is Peace Possible?"

September 2004
E. Wayne Merry
Senior Associate
American Foreign Policy Council
"America and Europe: Breaking the Cold War Alliance
to Build a New Partnership"

May 2004
Mr. Robert Pickus
World Without War Council
"The Hispanic Challenge"

April 2004
Andrew Apostolou
Director of Research, The Foundation for the Defense of Democracies
"U.S. Public Debate on Foreign Policy, Its Peculiar Character and its
Detachment from Policymaking"

March 2004
Mr. Ken Jensen
Executive Director of the American Committees on Foreign Relations
Washington, D.C.
"Afghanistan and Iraq in the Light of Previous Interventions"

February 2004
Dr. Richard Millett
Senior Advisor of the Latin America for Political Risk Service

January 2004

"U.S. Neocons and Foreign Policy"
Mr. Jonathan Clarke
President of the American Journalism Federation

Decemeber 2003
"Lessons From Baghdad"
Robert R. Reilly
Director of the Voice of America

November 2003
"North Korea - After the Bomb"
Mr. Joseph P. Manguno, Jr.
Senior News Editor for CNN International

October 2003

"Rational and Humane Solutions to
the Population Problem"
Werner Fornos, President
Population Institute, a Washington, D.C.
Based Non-Profit Public Interest Group

September 2003

"Prospect for Latin America's Economies"

Isaac Cohen
President and CEO of Inverway, LLC
Washington, D.C.

May 2003
"The U.S. and Pakistan"
Ambassador Husain Haqqani
Visiting Scholar
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
Washington, D.C.

April 2003

"Examining Our Policies in the Middle East"
Ambassador Edward L. Peck
Former U.S. Ambassador to Iraq
Chevy Chase, Maryland

"The Piratization of Russia"
Professor Marshall I. Goldman
Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies
Harvard University
Cambridge, Massachusetts

March 2003

"What Happens to the Oil: International Law and
the Occupation of Iraq"
R. Dobie Langenkamp, Esq.
Professor of Law and Director of National Energy/
Environment Law, Tulsa College of Law
Tulsa, Oklahoma

February 2003
"Osama Bin Laden: Serpent or Hydra?"
Nancy C. Biggio, Ph.D.
Adjunct professor, Political Sciene
Birmingham Southern College

January 2003
"Africa and the War on Terrorism"
Mr. Herman J. Cohen
Former Assistant Secretary of State for Africa
Washington, D.C.

December 2002

"The World, International Investing, Globalization and
Corporate Governance-Interrelationship with Foreign Policy
Mr. Walter P. Stern
The Capital Group Companies
New York, New York

November 2002
"Afghanistan, Terrorism, and Current U.S. Foreign Policy"
Mrs. Phyllis E. Oakley, Assistant Secretary of State
Intelligence and Research
Washington, D.C.

October 2002
"9-11, U.S. Intelligence and the Real World"
Mr. Robert David Steele, Intelligence Coach
Open Source Solutions Network
Oakton, Virginia

September 2002

"Russia at Ten: A Progress Report"
Dr. Robert H. Donaldson, President of Board of Directors
American Committees on Foreign Relations
Washington, D.C







click HERE for contact information