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Annual National Conference


The World Affairs Councils of America hosted its 2013 National Conference, Six Top Issues for 2014November 13-15, 2013 at the Liaison Capitol Hill Hotel.
Thank you to all attendees, speakers, and sponsors for helping to make the 2013 National Conference a great one. We want to give you the opportunity to let us know what aspects went well and appealed to you most, and what areas for improvement deserve our attention. We depend on your feedback and welcome your ideas -- let's make next year's event even better!
Share your favorite 2013 National Conference moment with us! Leave a post on our Facebook page or tweet at us at @WACAmerica
Held annually for over two decades, the World Affairs Councils of America's National Conference engages our regional leaders and members drawn from the business, civic, and education communities with leading policy-makers and experts. The National Conference launches the National Network's year-long discussion of the Six Top Issues for 2014 selected by our network leadership across the country and helps plan our programming for the coming year. 

The Six Top Issues selected by the National Network leadership as the most important national security issues for the coming year are: 
  • Cybersecurity
  • U.S. Energy Independence
  • Global Economic Realignment
  • Middle East
  • Global Environment Issues
  • K-12 Education 


2013 National Conference Speakers 

Laura Bush
Former First Lady of the United States, Honorable Keynote Speaker


Supreme Court Justice Stephen G. Breyer
Associate Justice, U.S. Supreme Court on making our democracy work


Edward Alden
Bernard L. Schwartz Senior Fellow, Council on Foreign Relations


Ernie Allen
President & CEO, International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children, on the virtual economy


Senator Kelly Ayotte
Opening Dinner Keynote SpeakerMember, Senate Armed Services Committee


Peter Baker
1918 Society -- White House Correspondent,The New York Times;author of the upcoming bookDays of Fire: Bush and Cheney in the White House


Senator Richard Blumenthal
Co-Chair, Senate Caucus to End Human Trafficking


Leland D. Melvin
Associate Administrator for Education, NASA, on U.S. education


Marilyn Carlson Nelson
Chair, Carlson Holdings Inc., on human trafficking


The Honorable Michael Chertoff
Former Secretary of Homeland Security; and Chairman and Co-Founder, The Chertoff Group on cybersecurity


Frank J. Cilluffo
Former Special Assistant to the President for Homeland Security;Associate Vice President, George Washington University; Director, Homeland Security Policy Institute on cybersecurity


Massimo Cirasino
Manager of the Financial Infrastructure & Remittances Service Line and Head of Payments Systems Development Group, World Bank,on the virtual economy


Steve Clemons
Washington Editor at Large,The Atlantic;Editor,Atlantic Live;andSenior Fellow, American Strategy Program, New America Foundation on global economic realignment


Lieutenant General Jon M. Davis
Deputy Commander, U.S. Cyber Command on cybersecurity


Ambassador Paula J. Dobriansky
Senior Fellow, Harvard University JFK Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs; former Under Secretary of State for Democracy and Global Affairs; Chair, WACA National Board of Directors


Ambassador Gary Doer
Ambassador of Canada to the United States of America,onenergy policy and the environment


Bob Dudley
Group Chief Executive, BP, will give a keynote on the future of energy


David Drummond
Senior Vice President, Corporate Development and Chief Legal Officer, Google


Elizabeth C. Economy
C.V. Starr Senior Fellow and Director for Asia Studies, Council on Foreign Relations, on global economic realignment


Tom Gjelten
Correspondent, NPR

Marc Grossman

Ambassador Marc Grossman
Former U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, and former Chair, WACA National Board of Directors, on making our democracy work


John Hofmeister
Founder and Chief Executive,Citizens for Affordable Energy; and former President, Shell Oil Company on U.S. energy policy and the environment


Kevin Johnson
Chief Executive Officer, Secure Ideas; andSenior Instructor, SANS Institute on cybersecurity


Mwangi S. Kimenyi
Director, Africa Growth Initiative, and Senior Fellow, Global Economy and Development, Brookings Institution, on emerging economies


Sarah O. Ladislaw
Co-Director & Senior Fellow, Energy & National Security Program, CSIS


Michael Levi
David M. Rubenstein Senior Fellow for Energy and the Environment and Director of the Program on Energy Security and Climate Change, Council on Foreign Relations on U.S. energy policy and the environment


William F. Martin
Former Deputy Secretary of the US Department of Energy andformer Special Assistant to President Ronald Reagan;Chairman, Washington Policy & Analysis, Inc., on U.S. energy policy and the environment


Tarek Masoud
Associate Professor, Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, JFK School of Government, Harvard University


Ambassador John D. Negroponte
Vice Chairman, McLarty Associates


Ambassador Roger F. Noriega
Fellow, American Enterprise Institute; andformer assistant secretary of state for Western Hemisphere affairs on emerging economies


Senator Rob Portman
Co-Chair, Senate Caucus to End Human Trafficking


Josh Rogin
Senior Correspondent for National Security and Politics,Newsweekand The Daily Beast, will keynote the discussion with the WACA Student Scholarship Winners


Stephen Rubley
Stephen Rubley, Managing Director, Government Segment, Thomson Reuters, and President and Chief Executive Officer, Thomson Reuters Special Services, LLC,on the virtual economy


Charles Sennott
Vice President, Editor-at-Large and co-founder,Global Post


Barbara Slavin
Senior Fellow, Atlantic Center's South Asia Center; and Washington Correspondent,Al-Monitor on the Middle East


David Wessel
Economics Editor and Columnist,The Wall Street Journal


Ambassador Ross Wilson
Former U.S. Ambassador to Turkey;Director, Dinu Patriciu Eurasia Center, Atlantic Council; Lecturer, The George Washington University on the Middle East


Robin Wright
Joint Fellow, U.S. Institute of Peace and the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars; and author ofRock the Casbah: Rage and Rebellion across the Islamic worldon the Middle East



2013 National Confence Embassy Receptions


Embassy of Portugal


National Conference Scholarships Available
The National Board of Directors of the World Affairs Councils of America offered 25 scholarships for college students from our national network to attend the 2013 National Conference. 


Wednesday, November 13
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM: Fall Leadership Meeting for Council CEOs and Staff/Annual Membership Meeting
6:30 PM - 8:30 PM: Opening Dinner  

Thursday, November 14
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM: Main Plenaries
5:30 PM - 8:00 PM: Embassy Receptions

Friday, November 15
7:30 AM - 8:45 AM: 1918 Society Breakfast
9:00 AM - 3:00 PM: Main Plenaries
Conference concludes at 3:00 PM

Thank You to Our Generous 2013 National Conference Sponsors




Speaker Series

Cover to Cover

National Conference

2012 National Conference

2011 National Conference

2011 National Conference Leadership Seminars

2010 National Conference

2009 National Conference

2008 National Conference

2007 National Conference

National Conference Speakers

1918 Society

Leadership Missions

Student/Teacher Education Programs

Log-in for WACA Leadership and Staff: Access the Discussion Board, Resource Materials, Available Authors, Event Calendar Administration, and post your recommended speakers.


1918 Society Members 

Carlson & The Carlson Family Foundation

Carnegie Corporation of New York


The Claremont Group


Delegation of the European Union to the United States

Duke Energy


The Gambrinus Company

Goldman Sachs


Johnson + Sterling

Mr. Michael Phillip



Rosetta Stone

Steelcase, Inc.

Thomson Reuters

Tomassian, Throckmorton & Inouye LLP

Turkish Cultural Foundation

Van Andel Institute