Past Speakers/Events

April 24th Dr. Shadi Hamid At The Bistango Restaurant


World Affairs Council of Orange County presents Dr. Shadi Hamid
Fellow, Saban Center at the Brookings Institution; Vice-chair, Project on Middle East Democracy

“The Future of Political Islam”

Dr. Shadi Hamid is a fellow with the Project on U.S. Relations with the Islamic World at the Saban Center for Middle East Policy at the Brookings Institution and is the author of Temptations of Power: Islamists and Illiberal Democracy in a New Middle East. He served as director of research at the Brookings Institution’s Doha Center until January 2014. Prior to joining Brookings, Hamid was director of research at the Project on Middle East Democracy (POMED) and was a Hewlett Fellow at Stanford University’s Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law. He is currently vice-chair of POMED, a correspondent for The Atlantic, and a member of the World Bank’s MENA Advisory Panel.

Dr. Hamid has served as a program specialist on public diplomacy at the U.S. State Department and was a legislative fellow in the office of U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA). His articles on Islamist movements and U.S. policy have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Foreign Affairs, The New Republic, Foreign Policy, The National Interest, The Washington Quarterly, Policy Review, Slate, Forbes, Democracy: A Journal of Ideas, and many other publications. His writing on Egypt has been featured on NBC’s “Meet the Press” and the Washington Post named him one of the top “23 Twitter accounts you must follow to understand Egypt.” Dr. Hamid received his B.S. and M.A. from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and he received his Ph.D. in political science from Oxford University.

Date: Thursday, April 24, 2014

Location: Bistango Restaurant
19100 Von Karman Avenue, Irvine CA 92612

Complimentary Valet Parking

11:30 am Reception * 12:00 pm Lunch * Program and Booksigning
Members – $40 * Non-Members – $55 * Students – $30
Members – Program Only – $10 (no meal)

Limited Seating – First Come, First Serve Basis

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April 3rd Dr. Muhammad Khalid Ejaz – Premium Member and Trustees Dinner At The Center Club

World Affairs Council
of Orange County


Premium Member and Trustees Only Event


Dr. Muhammad Khalid Ejaz
Acting Consul General of Pakistan

“The Role of Pakistan in a post-Afghanistan World”

Moderator: Dr. Mark Chapin-Johnson

Dr. Muhammad Khalid Ejaz holds a Master’s degree in International Public Policy from the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) of Johns Hopkins University in Washington, D.C.

He was a Lecturer/Demonstrator at Nishtar Medical College in Multan, Pakistan before joining the Pakistani Foreign Service in 1998. He served within various divisions of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs including: Afghanistan, ECO, South Asia, and Personnel. He remained posted as Second Secretary at the Embassy of Pakistan in Kuwait from August 2002 to December 2005.

He has received training from the Civil Services Academy in Lahore, the Foreign Services Academy in Islamabad, the Japanese Language Training Institute in Kansai, Japan, Human Soft, the Centre for European Studies in Strasbourg, France, the Singapore Mediation Centre, the National Institute of Management, and the School of Public Policy in Pakistan.

Between 2008 and 2009 he was a visiting faculty member of the Faculty of Contemporary Studies (FCS), the National Defence University in Islamabad, and Bahria University.

He joined the Consulate General of Pakistan, Los Angeles in October 2009. He is married and has three children.

Date: Thursday, April 3, 2014

Location: The Center Club
650 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa, Ca. 92626

6:00 pm Reception * 7:00 pm Dinner * 7:45 pm Program
Premium Members and Guests – $65

Limited Seating – First Come, First Serve Basis

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March 14th Angela Stent At Andrei’s Conscious Cuisine Restaurant



World Affairs Council of Orange County presents Angela Stent
Director of the Center for Eurasian, Russian and East European Studies at Georgetown University and former National Intelligence Officer for Russia and Eurasia at the National Intelligence Council

“Russia: Is a “Reset” Still Possible?”

Join us for a Presentation and Book Signing

Russia and the US remain at odds on so many fronts. The crisis in the Ukraine, the Syrian conflict, the Iranian nuclear program, the Snowden asylum, individual and human rights issues, are indicative of a relationship that has reached an impasse before it had any chance to improve. The prospects of a burgeoning partnership which appeared possible just a few years ago seems to have faded and given way to more strained relations.

Do the Russians feel they have been shunned by the West and should take a hard line to assert a position of power and to be taken seriously? Have the US and the EU made strategic mistakes and, as a result missed opportunities to bring Russia into the fold of a collaborative agenda? Will the memories of the Cold War and an enduring mistrust continue to hamper any possibility of a strong US-Russian partnership? How important is Putin’s persona in all this? Angela Stent, a leading expert on Russia will address these hot topics, and her recently published book “The Limits of Partnership: US-Russian Relations in the Twenty-First Century” at an upcoming WACOC lunch program.

Angela Stent is Director of the Center for Eurasian, Russian and East European Studies and Professor of Government and Foreign Service at Georgetown University. She is also a Senior Fellow (non-resident) at the Brookings Institution. In the fall of 2008, she was a Fulbright scholar at the Moscow State Institute of International Relations and a Berlin Prize Fellow at the American Academy in Berlin. From 2004-2006 she served as National Intelligence Officer for Russia and Eurasia at the National Intelligence Council. From 1999 to 2001, she served in the Office of Policy Planning at the U.S. Department of State. Dr. Stent received her B.A. from Cambridge University, her MSc. from the London School of Economics and Political Science and her M.A. and PhD. from Harvard University.

Date: Friday, March 14, 2014
Location: Andrei’s Conscious Cuisine Restaurant
2607 Main Street, Irvine, CA 92614

Self Parking – Complimentary

11:30 am Reception * 12:00 pm Lunch * 12:30 pm Program and Book-signing
Members – $45 * Non-Members – $65 * Students – $35

Members – Program Only (no meal) – $10 (arrive at 12:20)

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March 11th Philip J. (P.J.) Crowley At Westin South Coast Plaza Hotel

World Affairs Council of Orange County presents Philip J. Crowley
Former Special Assistant to President Clinton and Former Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs
“Homeland Security: Has the US Defense Against Terrorism Been Compromised via Wiki-Leaks and Snowden?”

The terrorist attacks preceding the Sochi Winter Olympics along with recent sniper attack targeting the US power grid highlight the fact that world terrorism is not in a state of hibernation or repentance but rather active, engaged and continuing, albeit with decimated ranks. Have the cable leaks from confidential diplomatic sources along with the Snowden affair revealing the US spying apparatus compromised the US’ capabilities to stay one step ahead of the terrorists? Do these compromises in our security and surveillance systems jeopardize our safety and allow the terrorists to benefit from both our transparency and rogue agents? Please attend and listen to an expert P. J. Crowley, who as Special Assistant to US Presidents and as Assistant Secretary of State was forced to address these critical issues as a matter of US policy.

Philip J. (P.J.) Crowley is a Professor of Practice and Fellow at the Institute for Public Diplomacy and Global Communication at The George Washington University.

P.J. appears frequently as a national security commentator on national and global television networks, including as a regular contributor to the BBC. He writes occasional opinion columns for the BBC and MSNBC. Recent opinion pieces have also been published in The Washington Post and The Guardian. Atlantic Magazine named him as one of 21 Brave Thinkers in 2011.

P.J. held the 2011-2012 Omar Bradley Chair of Strategic Leadership at the Penn State Dickinson School of Law and School of International Affairs, Dickinson College and the Army War College. In November 2012, he authored The Rise of Transparency and Decline of Secrecy in the Age of Global and Social Media for the Penn State Journal of Law & International Affairs.

P.J. was nominated by President Obama as the Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs in 2009 and confirmed by the United States Senate. He served as the Assistant Secretary and Spokesman at the Department of State until March 2011. He was the primary U.S. government interlocutor with major media regarding the impact of the release of classified diplomatic cables by WikiLeaks.

Before joining the Obama administration, he was a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress, with a particular focus on homeland security in the aftermath of 9/11. He authored several national security studies, including Safe at Home, a detailed homeland security strategy to protect the American homeland, improve national preparedness and rebuild U.S. standing in the world. He remains engaged on these issues as a participant in the Aspen Institute Homeland Security Group. He wrote Homeland Security and the Post-9/11 Era, published by the American Constitution Society for Law and Policy, in January 2013.

During the Clinton administration, P.J. was Special Assistant to the President of the United States for National Security Affairs on the staff of the National Security Council. He also served as Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs.

He spent 26 years in the Air Force, retiring at the rank of colonel in September 1999. He is a veteran of Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. During the Kosovo conflict, he worked under Javier Solana, then Secretary General of NATO, helping to develop a strategic communication capability in support for the NATO campaign.

P.J. is a native of Massachusetts and graduate of the College of the Holy Cross. His spouse, Paula Kougeas, is also a retired Air Force colonel and now a teacher. They have two adult children and live in Alexandria, Virginia.

Date: Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Location: Westin South Coast Plaza Hotel
686 Anton Boulevard
Costa Mesa, Ca. 92626

Self Parking – Complimentary (included in price)

6:00 pm General Reception * 7:00 pm Dinner * 7:45 pm Program

Premium Members – 5:45 pm Private Wine Reception with Mr. Crowley
(Must RSVP to Private Reception to 949-253-5751 by March 7 to attend)

Members – $60 * Non-Members – $80 * Students – $45

Members – Program Only $10 (to arrive at 7:30)
(does not include dinner or parking)

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February 8th Academic WorldQuest 2014 At Chapman University

Thank You to our Sponsors

Orange County Winning Team Sponsor
Mission Viejo Rotary Club

Academic WorldQuest Sponsors
Center for Living Peace
James and Catherine Emmi
Bruce and Carol Hallenbeck
John and Carolyn Kuykendall
Peggy Maradudin
Errol and Candace Mathieu
Judge Tully (RET) and Janette Seymour – ADR Service, Inc.
Norm Tanber
Mike Withrow


World Affairs Council of Orange County

Invites you to participate in our

6th Annual Academic WorldQuest
February 8, 2014
Chapman University

Academic WorldQuest is a team competition, held among Orange County high school students, testing students’ knowledge of global affairs. This year the local winning team from Orange County will have the opportunity to participate in the National Academic WorldQuest in Washington DC in April 2014! Recruit your team of trivia all-stars and join us for an evening of fun, food, and friendly competition!

Who: One team of 4 students per high school

Cost: There is no fee to participate.

What: Academic WorldQuest competition to be held on February 8, 2014 in Orange County. Teams respond to multiple-choice and identification questions regarding topics in the following categories:

2013-2014 Topics
U.S. Energy Policy
Global Economic Realignment
Middle East
Global Environmental Issues
U.S. Education
UN Millennium Goal 1: Eradicate Extreme Poverty & Hunger
Global Health
Current Events

When: Competition: Saturday, February 8, 2014 Time: 3:30 pm – 7:00 pm (arrive at 3:00 pm).

Registration: – A teacher registers the team by emailing us at

How: Preparation – Study guide will be available soon on or call us at 949-253-5751. A study guide will be mailed to you when your team is confirmed.

Why it is Important: Academic WorldQuest is a great way for students to learn about and engage in international affairs through fun and challenging activities along with being able to include their experience on their resume or college applications. This year the local winning team from Orange County will have the opportunity to participate in the National Academic WorldQuest in Washington, DC Saturday, April 26, 2014 at Georgetown University.

The World Affairs Council of Orange County is one of 94 such councils throughout the United States. World Affairs Councils are non-profit, non-partisan, non-government organizations open to all who wish to join.

Phone: 949-253-5751 * Fax: 949-253-5752 * 2102 Business Center Drive, Irvine * Learn more at

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February 5th Deputy Assistant Secretary James Zumwalt At The Pacific Club



World Affairs Council of Orange County and Japan America Society Presents James Zumwalt
Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Japan and Korean Affairs

“The U.S. Rebalance Toward Asia: A Look at the Year Ahead”

The year 2014 offers many opportunities for the United States to sustain its policy of strengthening our ties to the world’s most dynamic region. Jim Zumwalt will talk about the Obama Administration’s efforts to strengthen bilateral security alliances, promote partnerships with like-minded countries, work constructively with China in areas of common interest, take advantage of opportunities for trade and investment, and promote people-to-people ties with Asia. He will look back on achievements over the past year, and then talk about the opportunities that lie ahead.

Jim Zumwalt began his tour as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Japan and Korean affairs on January 3, 2012. He previously served as the Embassy Tokyo’s Deputy Chief of Mission. He was Director of the Office of Japanese Affairs in the Department of State, Washington, D.C. from 2006-2008 and has served prior assignments in Japan, as Economic Minister Counselor, Embassy Tokyo Economic Officer and Consulate Kobe Consular Officer.

In Washington, D.C., Jim has previously worked in the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs Korea and Philippine desks, and in the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs Front Office. He received a master’s degree in International Security Studies from the National War College in 1998 and a bachelor of arts in American History and also in Japanese Language from U.C. Berkeley.

Date: Wednesday, February 5, 2014
Location: The Pacific Club
4110 MacArthur Blvd.,
Newport Beach, CA 92660

Complimentary Self Parking

6:00 pm Reception * 7:00 pm Dinner * 7:45 pm Program

Members – $55 * Non-Member – $75 * Students – $45
Table of 10 – $550 * Program Only (does not include a meal) – $10

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January 22nd Nina Hachigian At Westin South Coast Plaza Hotel

World Affairs Council of Orange CountyPresents “United States-China Relations: Competition or Cooperation”
Please join us for a speaker presentation and booksigning on “Debating China” by Nina Hachigian Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress
America and China are the two most powerful players in global affairs, and no relationship is more consequential. How they choose to cooperate and compete affects billions of lives. But U.S.-China relations are complex and often delicate, featuring a multitude of critical issues that America and China must navigate together. Missteps could spell catastrophe.

Nina Hachigian is a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress. Based in Los Angeles, she is the editor of Debating China: The U.S. – China Relationship in Ten Conversations. Her earlier book, co-authored, was The Next American Century: How the U.S. Can Thrive as Other Powers Rise.

Prior to American Progress, Ms. Hachigian was a senior political scientist at RAND Corporation and served as the director of the RAND Center for Asia Pacific Policy for four years. From 1998 to 1999, she was on the staff of the National Security Council in the White House.

Ms. Hachigian has published numerous reports, book chapters, and journal articles, including essays in Foreign Affairs, The Washington Quarterly, Democracy, and Survival, as well as op-ed pieces appearing in The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and the South China Morning Post, among others. Her earlier book was The Information Revolution in Asia (RAND, 2003). She has been a guest on “Real Time with Bill Maher,” CNN, Fox News, BBC, and NPR’s “All Things Considered” and “Morning Edition.” She is on the board of the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Affairs at Stanford University and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Nina Hachigian received her B.S. from Yale University and her J.D. from Stanford Law School

Date: Date: Wednesday, January 22, 2014
Location: Westin South Coast Plaza Hotel
686 Anton Blvd., Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Self-Parking: complimentary (included in price)

6:00 p.m. Reception * 7:00 p.m. Dinner * 7:45 p.m. Program

Members @ $55 Non-members @ $75 Students @ $45

Program Only @ $10.00 – does not include a meal or parking
(Program only to arrive at 7:30 pm)

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