Sheikh Abdulla Al-Ali Al Sabah

Sheikh Abdulla Al-Ali AlSabah is member of the Advisory Board. AlSabah is a Kuwaiti academic and researcher. He holds MSc in Middle East politics from the University of London and received his MA in International Relations from Kuwait University. Al Sabah researches and writes on the geopolitics of the Gulf region. Al-Sabah has participated in many seminars and conferences related to Middle East politics.

Dr. Abdullah Baabood

Dr. Abdullah Baabood is a member of Board of Directors. He is an academic from Oman who currently holding the Chair of the State of Qatar for Islamic Area Studies and a visiting professor at the Faculty of International Research and Education, Waseda University, Tokyo-Japan. Abdullah taught at different universities and institutions in Europe and the Gulf, and was a visiting professor at the Middle Institute, National University of Singapore and the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Hamad Bin Khalifa University, Qatar. He has previously held the positions of the Director of the Gulf Studies Center at Qatar University and the Director of the Gulf Research Center at the University of Cambridge, UK. Abdullah’s teaching and research interest focuses on international relations, international political economy, especially on globalization and regionalism. His area focus is on the states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) economic, social and political development and their external relations. He has published widely and is frequently invited to speak on international conferences and seminars as well media programs.

Daniel V. Berkon

Dan Berkon is a member of the Board of Directors. He is the Founder and CEO of Culmen International and an international expert in WMD nonproliferation, counter-illicit trafficking, and international procurement and logistics. Dan has served as an advisor on international security programs to the U.S. Departments of Defense, State, Energy, Justice and Homeland Security. His contributions have included nuclear security initiatives in the former Soviet Union, maritime security programs in Africa, border security around the world, and counterterrorism in the U.S.

Prior to founding Culmen International in 2004, Dan spent 11 years at SASI, another U.S. Government contractor. There Dan rose from Director of International Programs to the Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President. In 1992, he worked at the U.S. Department of Commerce in the East Europe Business Information Center.

Dan holds a MBA in International Business from Georgetown University, and a BA in International Relations from the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA). Additionally, he is fluent in German. Dan is a personal recipient of the DoD David Packard Award for Acquisition and Logistics, the Admiral Stark Award for Innovation, the Defense Threat Reduction Agency Outstanding Team Award, and the NAVAIR Award for Acquisition Excellence.

Sheikh Nawaf Bin Mubarak Al-Thani

Sheikh Nawaf Bin Mubarak Al-Thani is a member of Board of Directors. Nawaf M. Al-Thani is a writer, columnist, and lecturer in the fields of International Relations and Defense, focusing on the areas of Small State Security, MENA Defense, and Intelligence. He previously served with the rank of Brigadier General as Director of Defense Intelligence Operations in the State of Qatar. As a Diplomat, he served as the State of Qatar’s Senior Defense Official and Defense Attaché to the United States of America, Canada, and Mexico. Before that, as the Official Spokesperson and Director of Strategic Communications (STRATCOM) in the Ministry of Defense.

Al-Thani has served in several foreign military deployments, including Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation Odyssey Dawn, and Operation Unified Protector, and served in several humanitarian missions globally, including membership in the Arab League Humanitarian Observer mission in Syria in 2012.

Sheikh Nawaf has received distinguished commendations and citations from the Qatar Armed Forces, several NATO militaries, and multinational organizations. He is also the recipient of the French Republic’s Army Parachute infantry regiment Airborne wings “Brevet parachutiste militair”, the Qatar Armed Forces Airborne wings, and Ranger/Commando tab. He earned his LL.B from Qatar University and an M.Res in Defense Studies from Kings College London (U.K.). He graduated with distinction from the inaugural class (Class No.1) of the Ahmed Bin Mohammed Military Academy (Qatar) and is also a General Command & Staff graduate with honors from the Joaan bin Jassim Academy for Defense Studies (Qatar).

He serves as an Advisory Committee Member in Georgetown University’s Small States Research Program (Qatar). And as a Distinguished International Defense Affairs Fellow at the National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations (Washington, D.C.)

Dr. Wafa Al-Daily

Dr. Wafa Al-Daily is member of the Board of Directors. She is also a senior urban planner and an international development expert with a demonstrated working history in academia, government agencies, NGOs, and the private sector. Dr. Al-Daily is experienced in urbanization, metropolitan planning and governance, urban recovery/reconstruction, sustainable development, and slums and informal settlements. She also has extensive management experience in international education and program administration and partnership development, capacity building, grant and contract administration, grant writing, project management, strategic planning, financial oversight, and continuous quality assessment. She is an advocate for inclusive planning and has worked with underprivileged and minority populations in the United States and abroad.

Dr. Al-Daily is the Associate Director for Global Initiatives for the Virginia Tech Center of International Research, Education and Development (CIRED). Prior to taking this role, she was the Associate Director for Global Initiatives and Partnerships of the Virginia Tech Language and Culture Institute and the Coordinator of Middle East and North Africa Initiatives of CIRED. Dr. Al-Daily is the Co-Founder and Executive Director of EHAAR International, LLC. (a consultancy firm that focuses on development and urban and urban recovery issues). She is the Lead of the International Metropolitan Fellowship Arabia Chapter (IMFARC) and a member of the Board of Directors of the International Metropolitan Fellowship (IMF). She has held the position of Assistant Professor within the College of Engineering at Sana’a University since 1997. She has worked in a consulting capacity with a number of organizations, including the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), URBAConsulting/World Bank Group (WBG), Social Fund for Development (SFD), and Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF).

Dr. Al-Daily is an affiliated member, fellow and researcher of a number of centers and institutes, including the Center for Cooperative Problem Solving (CCPS) and Institute for Policy and Governance (IPG) at Virginia Tech University, International Metropolitan Fellowship (IMF), American Planning Association (APA), International Society of City and Regional Planners (ISOCARP), and Arab-German Young Academy of Sciences and Humanities (AGYA). She is a NAFSA Academy fellow/alumna (Academy for International Education, Class 19). Dr. Al-Daily was a recipient of prestigious awards and fellowships, including the American Association of University Women International Fellowship and Who’s Who Among Students in the American Universities and Colleges. She was honored with her nomination for the President’s Award for Excellence and the Alumni Award for International Outreach at Virginia Tech University in 2020 for her significant contributions to Virginia Tech’s internationalization mission.

Dr. Al-Daily is a certified practitioner of Kirton Adoption-Innovation (KAI) Inventory Problem Solving and Cognitive Style, and a facilitator of intergroup dialogue and human relations. She earned a Ph.D. in Planning, Governance and Globalization (PGG) from Virginia Tech, a Master of City and Regional Studies (CRS) from Rutgers University, a Non-degree Diploma in Urban Planning and Community Development from Rutgers University, and a Bachelor of Science in Architectural Engineering from Sana’a University.

Dr. Mohammad Alrumaihi

Dr. Mohammad Alrumaihi is member of the Board of Directors at Gulf International Forum and professor of Sociology at Kuwait University. Previously he was an advisor to the Kuwaiti Cabinet, and served as the General Secretary of the National Council for Culture, Arts and Letters (NCCAL) in Kuwait between 1998 and 2011. Dr. Alrumaihi is the founder and editor in chief for daily and monthly publications, and an advisor on various committees on education, journalism, culture and politics for the Kuwaiti government and private institutions in the Gulf region. Dr. Alrumaihi is a member of the board of Diplomatic Institute in Kuwait Foreign Affairs Ministry, Doha Institute for Graduate Studies, and Babtain Cultural Foundation. He has written extensively on political sociology and social change in the Gulf region, and cultural changes of Arab world. He has published more than twenty five books. Dr. Alrumaihi served as the Editor in Chief of Awan, a daily Kuwaiti newspaper. Before that Editor in chief of AlArabi Magazine.


Previously, Dr. Alrumaihi served as a member of the Advisory Board for the Council of Ministers headed by Kuwait Prime Minister, member of a number of working commissions on education and higher education in the Kuwaiti government, member of the Gulf Studies Center Advisory Board at the American University of Kuwait and member of the Austrian College in Kuwait, as well serving in prize and publication committees of KFAS.

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