Speakers

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Luis Almagro (Uruguay) is the secretary general of the Organization of American States. Previously, he was Uruguay's minister of foreign affairs and ambassador to China, after occupying senior diplomatic posts in his country’s foreign ministry and at its embassies in Germany and Iran. He is a lawyer by profession. 

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María Victoria Angulo González (Colombia) is the Colombian Minister of National Education since August 2018. She is a social economist with over 20 years of experience in social politics with an emphasis on education. She has worked in the Colombian public sector as an adviser to the Direction of Economic Studies at the National Planning Department and as an adviser and deputy director of Sector Development at Bogota’s District Department of Finance. Before becoming Minister of Education, Angulo served as deputy director of Management Support for Higher Education Institutions and director of Promotion of Higher Education at the Ministry of Education. Between 2011 and 2015, she was Executive Director of Fundación Empresarios por la Educación, and in 2016, the Mayor of Bogotá appointed her as the District Secretary of Education.

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Alicia Bárcena (Mexico) is the executive secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (CEPAL). She has previously served as under-secretary general for management at headquarters in New York, director of ECLAC’s Environment and Human Settlements Division, and coordinator of the Latin American and Caribbean Sustainable Development Program of the UN Development Programme (UNDP). 

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Ana Cristina Barros (Brazil) is a senior advisor for sustainable infrastructure at the Climate Policy Initiative. She has a 30-year career in the socio-environmental field, working in public and private policies for the conservation and sustainable use of natural resources, climate change, production and sustainable development. She has worked in national and international civil society organizations (OSC), was the national secretary for Biodiversity and Forests, at the Ministry of the Environment (MMA), and has served in advisory bodies to the Boards of Directors of multinationals such as Vale SA and JBS SA.

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Gustavo Beliz (Argentina) is the secretary of strategic affairs for the Republic of Argentina. Previously, he worked at the Inter-American Development Bank in senior positions focused on connecting new technologies, physical infrastructure, and regional integration. Beliz also served as national coordinator for the Organization of American States and as president of the National Institute of Public Administration, minister of the Interior, and minister of Justice, Safety, and Human Rights for the Republic of Argentina.

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Anita Bhatia (India) serves as the assistant secretary-general and UN Women’s deputy executive director since August 2019. Before joining UN Women, Ms. Bhatia had a distinguished career at the World Bank Group, serving in various senior leadership and management positions, both at Headquarters and in the field. She has extensive experience in the area of international development, strategy, resource mobilization, strategic partnerships and organizational change management.

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Epsy Campbell Barr is the vice president of Costa Rica. She was previously the foreign minister and a member of the Costa Rican National Assembly.

Campbell has been active in Afro-Caribbean affairs since entering politics. In 1996, she founded the Women’s Forum for Central American Integration, which she coordinated until 2001. Concurrently, she also coordinated the Network of Afro-Caribbean and Afro-Latin American Women.

Campbell has published books and articles on democracy and inclusion, political and economic participation of women, people of African descent, sexism, and racism, among other topics. She is an expert in social development issues, political participation of women of African descent, and equality.

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María Brown Pérez (Ecuador) has served as Ecuador's Minister of Education since May 2021. The Minister has a degree in International Relations from the Universidad de San Andrés in Buenos Aires, a master's degree in Special Education from the Universidad Tecnológica Equinoccial, and a Higher Diploma in Project Design, Management, and Evaluation from the Latin American Faculty of Social Sciences (FLACSO). In her professional career, she won an education development competition at UNESCO to head educational issues in the Andean region, served as an advisor to the vice minister of the Ministry of Education of Ecuador, and served as the undersecretary of Special and Inclusive Education Foundations of Ecuador.

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Laura Chinchilla (Costa Rica) is a political scientist and was the first woman to be elected president of Costa Rica (2010-2014). Previously, she served as minister of public security (1996-1998), congresswoman (2002-2006), minister of justice (2006-2008), and vice president (2006-2008). During her political career, Mrs. Chinchilla prompted police and justice reform measures to tackle crime and violence, digital and open government, the promotion of women's rights, and early childhood protection. She also promoted environmental sustainability policies, especially on preserving marine biodiversity, for which she was distinguished with international awards.

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Fiona Clouder (United Kingdom) was appointed as the UK Government's regional ambassador for Latin America and the Caribbean, COP26, in March 2020. She joined the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (now FCDO) in 2001 from the Research Councils (now UKRI) to build and lead the FCO’s global Science and Innovation Network (UKSIN). After going to India as director of corporate services in 2006 and working on migration issues in London in 2009, Fiona led the FCO’s strategy on Latin America (the Canning Agenda) as deputy director, Americas, from 2011. She served as Her Majesty's ambassador to Chile from 2014 to 2018, later returning to the UK to work on the Americas, Overseas Territories, climate diplomacy and preparations for COP26.

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Vicky Colbert (Colombia) is founder and director of Fundación Escuela Nueva. She is a laureate of the first edition of the Yidan Prize for Education Development (2017) and 2013 WISE Prize for Education. She is co-author of the renowned Escuela Nueva model and was its first National Coordinator. Colbert has pioneered this educational innovation from many organizational spheres: as vice-minister of Education of Colombia, UNICEF´s education adviser for LAC and now from Fundación Escuela Nueva (FEN). 

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Lucía Dammert (Chile) is associate professor at the Universidad de Santiago de Chile and a global fellow with the Latin American Program of the Woodrow Wilson Center. She is a researcher with expertise in urban violence, police reform and organized crime in Latin America. She has held key advisory positions at multilateral and national organizations and serves as a member of the Advisory Board on Disarmament Matters to the Secretary General of the United Nations. 

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Sergio Diaz-Granados (Colombia) is the executive president of CAF- development bank of Latin America. He has an extensive career in public and private service, both nationally and internationally, with a special emphasis on regional development and integration issues. Previously he served as executive director for Colombia at the Inter-American Development Bank, minister of Commerce Industry and Tourism of Colombia, vice minister of Business Development and president of the Board of Directors of Bancóldex and ProColombia. He has also been a congressman and chairman of the Economic Affairs Committee of the House of Representatives.

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Denise Dresser (Mexico) is a political analyst, columnist and academic.  Her work has centered on Mexican democratization, corruption, the construction of citizenship and political economy issues from a comparative perspective. She is a winner of the National Journalism Award and was awarded the "Legion of Honor" by the government of France for her work on human rights, freedom of expression and human rights in Mexico. Forbes magazine named her one of the 50 most powerful women in Mexico and one of the most influential people on Twitter. 

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Leandro Folgar (Uruguay) is the president of Plan Ceibal. He has worked as an associate professor in the Department of Education at Universidad Católica de Uruguay, focusing on active pedagogical practices, gamification, and playful environments of the 21st century. He has won several awards and distinctions including the International Leadership Program for youth leadership from the US State Department and the Morosoli Award.  

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Nyan Gadsby-Dolly (Trinidad and Tobago) is the current minister of Education and member of Parliament for St. Ann’s East. Prior to this role, she was an educator at St. Francois Girls’ College and a senior lecturer at the College of Science, Technology and Applied Arts of Trinidad and Tobago. She was first elected as a member of Parliament in 2015, and she also served as minister of Community Development, Culture and the Arts from 2015 to 2020. 

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Oscar Gamboa (Colombia) is minister counselor at the Colombian embassy in Washington DC. He has served as advisor of Colombian president Juan Manuel Santos for afro Colombian population affairs,  and executive director of the National Association of Mayors of municipalities with afrocolombian population.  

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Enrique García (Bolivia) was the president of CAF-Development Bank of Latin America from 1991to 2017, treasurer of the Inter-American Development Bank, and minister of Planning and Coordination of Bolivia. He currently serves as chairman of The Trust for the Americas and The Council of International Relations of Latin America (RIAL), co-vice chair of the Inter-American Dialogue and member of several boards and advisory councils.

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Alicia García Herrero (Spain) is the chief economist for Asia Pacific at Natixis. She also serves as senior fellow at the think-tank BRUEGEL and a non-resident senior fellow at the East Asian Institute of the National University Singapore. Alicia is an adjunct professor at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, a member of the Council of Advisors on Economic Affairs to the Spanish Government and an advisor to the Hong Kong Monetary Authority’s research arm. Alicia has also served as the chief economist for Emerging Markets at BBVA, member of the Asian Research Program at the Bank of International Settlements, head of the International Economy Division of the Bank of Spain, member of the Counsel to the Executive Board of the ECB, head of Emerging Economies at the Research Department at Banco Santander, and economist at the International Monetary Fund. Alicia holds a Ph.D. in Economics from George Washington University.

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Juan Gonzalez (United States) is senior advisor and special assistant to the president and National Security Council senior director for the Western Hemisphere for the Biden administration. He was previously a senior fellow at the Penn Biden Center for Global Diplomacy and Global Engagement and principal at JSG Strategy. Gonzalez served as deputy assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs, where he led US diplomatic engagement in Central America and the Caribbean. From 2013 to 2015, he was special advisor to Vice President Joe Biden, and he accompanied the Vice President on seven visits to Latin America and coordinated the launch of the US-Mexico High-Level Economic Dialogue, the Caribbean Energy Security Initiative, and the Alliance for Prosperity in the Northern Triangle of Central America. Gonzalez was also National Security Council Director for Western Hemisphere Affairs from 2011 to 2013. Prior to the White House, he served as chief of staff to Assistant Secretary of State Arturo Valenzuela.

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Selwin Hart (Barbados) is the special adviser to the Secretary-General on Climate Action and assistant secretary-general for the Climate Action Team. In this role, he works to ensure enhanced levels of ambition on climate change, focusing on Member State support, coalition-building, UN system engagement, and public mobilization to implement the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. Previously, Hart served as the executive director for the Caribbean at the Inter-American Development Bank and as ambassador to the United States and the Organization of American States for Barbados. Throughout his career, Hart has served in several climate change leadership positions, including as climate advisor for the Caribbean Development Bank, chief climate change negotiator for Barbados, and as coordinator and lead negotiator on finance for the Alliance of Small Island Developing States. 

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Mariano Jabonero (Spain) is the secretary general of the Organization of Ibero-American States (OEI). He is the author and co-author of texts and articles on education and has worked as a consultant in education in almost all countries of Latin America and Spain. Jabonero was a professor at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid and has received numerous distinctions including the Orden de Alfonso X El Sabio.  

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Carlos Felipe Jaramillo (Colombia) is the vice president for the Latin America and the Caribbean Region at the World Bank. He was previously the World Bank country director for Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia and Uganda, and was the senior director of the World Bank Group’s Macroeconomics, Trade and Investment Global Practice (MTI). Before joining the Bank, Jaramillo was a public servant in the Government of Colombia, holding offices in the Ministry of Finance, the Central Bank and the Ministry of Trade. 

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Muni Jensen (Colombia) is a senior advisor with Albright Stonebridge Group-Dentons Global Advisors, on issues related to Latin American politics, United States-Latin America trade, investment and public affairs. She previously worked at the Colombian Embassy in Washington, D.C., focusing on public affairs, trade and congressional affairs. She co-hosts the global affairs podcast Altamar, is a regular columnist on international affairs for El País in Colombia, and hosts the Georgetown Americas Institute interview series The American Table, as well as acting political analyst and speaker for media outlets and companies in Latin America, the US, and Europe. 

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María Claudia Lacouture (Colombia) is the executive director of the Colombo American Chamber of Commerce, (AmCham Colombia) Previously she was minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism of Colombia, president of ProColombia, manager of the 'Colombia es Pasión' campaign and vice-president of 'Imagen País'.  

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Karim Lesina (United States) serves as the executive vice president, chief external affairs officer for Millicom since November 2020. Previously, Karim was the senior vice president for International External and Regulatory Affairs at AT&T and worked as government affairs manager for Europe, Africa, and the Middle East at Intel. Karim is a current board member of the International Institute of Communications, a GSMA Chief Policy & Regulatory Officer Group member, and a Meridian Executive Committee Corporate Council member. He has extensive experience with multinational public relations, communications, and global engagement strategies.  

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Benigno López Benítez (Paraguay) is vice-president for Sectors and Knowledge at Inter-American Development Bank. Prior to joining the IDB, he served as minister of Finance of Paraguay. In that role, he led a comprehensive tax-reform initiative aimed at improving the progressive capacity of the tax system, increasing government revenue to finance health and education reforms, and incentivizing labour formalization. He also coordinated efforts to restructure the pension system, reform public expenditure and the civil service. 

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Luis Felipe López Calva (México), ASG, is the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) regional director for Latin America and the Caribbean since September 2018. He has nearly 30 years of professional experience, advising several Mexican governments, in addition to UNDP and most recently the World Bank where he  served as practice manager  of the Poverty and Equity Global Practice (Europe and Central Asia). 

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Susana Malcorra (Argentina) is the Senior Advisor to the Presidency of IE School of Public and Global Affairs in Madrid and former Dean of the IE School of Public and Global Affairs in Madrid. She has been minister of Foreign Affairs of Argentina and former chief of staff of the secretary-general of the United Nations.  She is founder of the Group of Women Leaders, Voices for Change and Inclusion and holds multiple board positions (profit and non-profit), among them the Inter-American Dialogue, the International Crisis Group and the Kofi Annan Foundation.  

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Javier Manzanares (Spain) is the deputy executive director at the Green Climate Fund. Previously, he was director and representative of the UN Office for Project and Services in the MERCOSUR region, based in Argentina. He was formerly division manager of Investment and Development Banking at the Central American Bank for Economic Integration. Javier also worked as the executive VP for two privately held banks of Grupo Fierro. His career in banking and finance began with Banco Santander/BSCH in the United States, Hong Kong, and Japan. Javier was the first chairman of the Board at IASE, The International Association for Sustainable Economy. He holds a dual MBA from Northwestern University/Kellogg (USA), an EMBA from Hong Kong University of Sciences & Technology (China), and a Ph.D. in Sustainability Management from INHA University in South Korea.

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Claudia Paz y Paz Bailey (Guatemala) is the director of CEJIL (Center for Justice and International Law) for the Mexico and Central America program since 2019. She served as Attorney General of Guatemala from 2010 to 2014, in this period the first case in national courts by genocide and crimes against humanity was followed. The fight against drug trafficking and organized crime was also promoted. She was part of the first Group of Independent Experts (GIEI) promoted by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and in November 2014, in the context of the disappearance of 43 normalista students in Ayotzinapa, Mexico. In 2018 she was part of the second GIEI, which was formed to respond to the democratic crisis that broke out on April 18 in Nicaragua. She is a lawyer and Notary Public, Doctor in Human Rights and Criminal Law, and a human rights defender.

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Kim Osborne (Dominica) is the executive secretary for Integral Development at the Organization of American States (OAS). From 2008 to 2011, she was the OAS representative to Belize, and she previously served as the head of the Technical Cooperation Section at the OAS Secretariat for Integral Development. She helped pioneer the OAS Small Tourism Enterprise Program for small and medium businesses. She is a founding member of the Center for Community Resource Development. 

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Patricia Politzer (Chile) is a member of the Constitutional Convention. A journalist by trade, she is a founding member of the Diario de Cooperativa radio, HOY magazine and La Época. She is the former press director of National Television Network (TVN) and president of the National Television Council. She was awarded the Lenka Franulic Prize in 2017 and the Monseñor Oscar Romero award, presented by SERPAJ - Servicio Paz y Justicia in 1992. 

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Rémy Rioux (France) is the chief executive officer of the Agence Française de Développement (AFD). As an expert in economics and international financial institutions, he has held high-level positions in a career devoted to development and Africa. After serving as chief of staff for the French minister of Economy and Finance, he was appointed as deputy general secretary of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and International Development. In 2017, he also became chairman of the International Development Finance Club (IDFC) and organized the 2020 Finance in Common Summit (FICS).

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Thomas A. Shannon, Jr. (United States) spent over 30 years in the US Foreign Service, most recently as undersecretary of state for political affairs in the US Department of State. He also served as the US ambassador to Brazil. Currently he is a senior international policy advisor at Arnold & Porter, and co-chair of the Inter-American Dialogue Board of Directors.

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Michael Shifter (United States) is president of the Inter-American Dialogue and an adjunct professor of Latin American politics at Georgetown University. He previously directed the Latin American and Caribbean Program at the National Endowment for Democracy and the Ford Foundation’s Governance and Human Rights Program. Since 1994, Shifter has played a key role in shaping the Dialogue’s agenda, commissioning policy-relevant articles and reports.   

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Oliver Stuenkel (Brazil) is Associate Professor at the School of International Relations at Fundação Getulio Vargas (FGV) in São Paulo. He is also a non-resident scholar at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington DC, a non-resident Fellow at the Global Public Policy Institute (GPPi) in Berlin and a columnist for EL PAÍS and Americas Quarterly. His research focuses on rising powers, global order and Brazilian foreign policy.  

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Claudia Uribe (Colombia) is the director of the UNESCO Regional Bureau for Education in Latin America and the Caribbean (OREALC/UNESCO Santiago) in Chile. Prior to joining UNESCO, she worked for the Inter-American Development Bank for over a decade, where she was responsible for leading technical dialogue, loan operations and technical cooperation programs in education for various countries in Latin America. 

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Daniele Violetti (Italy) is the senior director of Programmes Coordination and director a.i. of the Means of Implementation (MoI) Division of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).  As senior director he provides strategic direction and oversight and the MoI Division supports international cooperation on the mobilization of financial resources, technology development and transfer, and building of individual, institutional and systemic capacity to enable and support Parties to take enhanced action on climate change. Prior to his current position, he served as Chief of Staff of the secretariat for seven years. 

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Iván Duque (Colombia) is the President of Colombia. He has a law degree from the Sergio Arboleda University, is an expert in economic affairs, with executive studies at Harvard. He has a master's degree in Public Policy and Public Management from Georgetown University, as well as in Economic Law from American University. He was the Chief of the Culture, Creativity and Solidarity Division at the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), where he worked on social innovation, entrepreneurship, youth, and creative economies. He was a consultant to the IDB presidency and served as a senior advisor for Colombia, and Senior Advisor on the Investigation Panel on the Mavi Marmara incident between Turkey and Israel at the U.N. In addition to his legislative activities, Ivan Duque has stood out in several of the country's political developments. In 2016, the Semana magazine and Fundación Líder Colombia chose him as one of the most prominent leaders in the country. On June 17, 2018, he was elected President of Colombia for the 2018-2022 constitutional period with a government program based on Legality, Entrepreneurship and Equality.

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Laurentino Cortizo (Panama) is the current president of the Republic of Panama. President Cortizo has served as a technical advisor to the Secretary-General of the Organization of American States (OAS) and was appointed as ambassador alternative representative of Panama to the OAS in 1986. He has also served as senator/legislator from 1994 to 2004, was elected as president of the National Assembly in 2000, and served as the minister of agricultural development of Panama from 2004 to 2006. His private sector experience includes general manager of his family’s cattle ranch and concrete products industry. President Cortizo holds a Business Administration degree from Norwich University and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration and Ph.D. studies in International Business and Marketing at the University of Texas in Austin.

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Alberto Fernandez (Argentina) is the current president of the Republic of Argentina. Previously, he served as director of Summaries/Proceedings and deputy director-general of Legal Affairs at the Ministry of Economy during the presidency of Raúl Alfonsín, as superintendent of insurance between 1989 and 1995, and was the founder and first executive vice president of the BAPRO Group. In August 2000, he was elected legislator for the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires. In 2003, he served as chief/head of the Cabinet of Ministers. Fernández has a degree from the Law School of the University of Buenos Aires.