Alex de Waal is executive director of the World Peace Foundation. Considered one of the foremost experts on Sudan and the Horn of Africa, his scholarly work and practice has also probed humanitarian crisis and response, human rights, HIV/AIDS and governance in Africa, and conflict and peacebuilding.
In 1988, he received a D.Phil. in social anthropology at Nuffield College, Oxford for his thesis on the 1984-5 Darfur famine in Sudan. The next year he joined the Africa division of Human Rights Watch, only to resign in December 1992 in protest for HRW's support for the American military involvement in Somalia. He was the first chairman of the Mines Advisory Group at the beginning of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines. He set up two independent human rights organizations, African Rights (1993) and Justice Africa (1999), focusing respectively on documenting human rights abuses and developing policies to respond to human rights crises, notably in Rwanda, Somalia and Sudan. From 1997 to 2001, he focused on avenues to peaceful resolution of the second Sudanese Civil War. In 2001, he returned to his work on health in Africa, writing on the intersection of HIV/AIDS, poverty and governance, and initiated the Commission on HIV/AIDS and Governance in Africa.
Following a fellowship with the Global Equity Initiative at Harvard (2004-06), he worked with the Social Science Research Council as director of the program on HIV/AIDS and Social Transformation, and led projects on conflict and humanitarian crisis in Africa (2006-09). During 2005-06, de Waal was seconded to the African Union mediation team for Darfur and from 2009-11 served as senior adviser to the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel for Sudan. He was on the list of Foreign Policy’s 100 most influential public intellectuals in 2008 and Atlantic Monthly’s 27 “brave thinkers” in 2009.
In Fall 1012, Prof. de Waal is teaching Politics in Violent Conflict in Africa.
Alex de Waal
Bridget Conley-Zilkic is Research Director for the World Peace Foundation and lead researcher on the How Mass Atrocities End project. She previously worked as research director for the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Committee on Conscience. She led the Museum’s research and projects on contemporary threats of genocide, including curating an interactive installation From Memory to Action: Meeting the Challenge of Genocide Today. She received a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from Binghamton University in 2001, writing about cultural responses to humanitarian interventions in Bosnia and Haiti.
In Fall 2012, Prof. Conley-Zilkic is leading an independent study research group for the How Mass Atrocities End project.
Lisa Avery is Administrative Assistant to the World Peace Foundation. Lisa was previously employed as Administrative Specialist, Purchaser and Executive Assistant at Good Earth Teas in Santa Cruz, California though graduated from Framingham State University as a Liberal Arts major.
2012-2013 Research Assistants
Philip S. Khoury, Chair
Associate Provost and Ford International Professor of History, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and author and editor of several books on the Middle East, including Syria and the French Mandate: The Politics of Arab Nationalism, 1920-1945, Urban Notables and Arab Nationalism: The Politics of Damascus, 1860-1920, and The Modern Middle East: A Reader.
Peter D. Bell
Senior Research Fellow, Hauser Center for Nonprofit Organizations, Harvard University; President Emeritus, CARE USA; Chair, Bernard van Leer Foundation; Director, International Center for Research on Women; and Chair Emeritus, Inter-American Dialogue.
Director, Harvard University Committee on Human Rights Studies; Jeremiah Smith Jr. Lecturer in Law, Harvard Law School.
Partner, Mayo Capital Partners.
Catherine E. C. Henn
Vice President of Corporate and Legal Affairs, The Boston Globe, emeritus.
Partner, Henshon Klein, LLP; Senior Advisor (traveling chief-of-staff), Bill Bradley for President (2000).
Nawal Nour, MD, MPH
Director, Global Ob/Gyn and African Women's Health Center; Director, Ambulatory Obstetrics at BWH; Associate Professor, Harvard Medical School.
Thomas M. O'Reilly, Treasurer
Chief Operating Officer, Autopart International
Kenneth A. Oye
Director, MIT Program on Emerging Technologies and Associate Professor of Political Science and Engineering Systems, Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Books include Cooperation under Anarchy, Economic Discrimination and Political Exchange, Eagle in a New World. Research areas include governance of risks in biological engineering, food safety, nuclear and coal power, and pharmaceuticals.
James M. Shannon, WPF Vice-Chair
President, National Fire Protection Association; former Attorney General of Massachusetts; former Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Massachusetts.
Barbara Gunderson Stowe
Former Vice-President for Resource Development, Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Consultant in International Philanthropy.
Ian Johnstone is Professor of International Law at the Fletcher School and has focused his research on two broad tracks over the past several years: the role of law in international politics and peace operations. His focus on peace operations culminated in the Annual Review of Global Peace Operations, which he helped to launch and edited in 2006 and 2007.
Richard D. Allen (Counsel)
Richard C. Allen is a partner at the Boston law firm of Casner & Edwards, LLP, where he specializes in nonprofit corporate, regulatory, tax exemption, foundation, trust, and regulatory matters. His extensive experience on non-profit law includes serving as Assistant Attorney General and Chief of the Division of Public Charities in the Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General.
The work of the World Peace Foundation is made possible by an annual gift from the Ginn Trust.
Katherine L. Babson, Jr., is counsel to the law firm of Nixon Peabody where she practices in the area of estate planning and trust and estate administration. She serves as trustee for many trusts, including several whose beneficiaries are non-profit organizations and foundations.. She has practiced law for 35 years and chairs the investment committee of her firm's trust department.
Nicholas Safford is the Founder, Chairman and Treasurer of Nicholas H. Safford & Co., Inc, and is actively involved in investment analysis and portfolio management. For more than 30 years, the firm has advised clients and helped them achieve their investing goals. During this time, the company has grown from an initial handful of clients to now managing the assets of about $450 million for high net worth families and institutions.
Robert I. Rotberg, President Emeritus was President of the World Peace Foundation, 1993-2010. Access publications and information about WPF projects developed under Rotberg's tenure. You can also follow Rotberg's continuing research on his blog, http://robertrotberg.wordpress.com/