THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS

 

THANOS DIMADIS, PRESIDENT & EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR.

THANOS DIMADIS, PRESIDENT & EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR.

Thanos Dimadis (ThanosDimadis.com) is a foreign journalist and member of the International Federation of Journalists. He is a distinguished recipient of the Knight Bagehot Fellowship of Columbia Journalism School. Since 2010, he has covered as a foreign correspondent the Eurozone financial crisis from Washington, D.C. and Brussels for major Greek broadcast, online, print, and broadcast media. In Athens he served as the head of the political breaking news unit of the major broadcast ALPHA TV Channel. Thanos has been the producer and presenter of the most well-viewed documentary about the Greek financial crisis as well as the presenter of several political television talk shows in Greece. He is the author of the book In the Daedalus of the Eurozone Crisis, documenting his coverage. He has been a member of the editorial board of the non profit media organization Fair Observer. Thanos has also worked in the fields of marketing, communications, partnerships, and audience and business development with experience in the U.S. and Europe. He is an alumnus of George Washington University, the Harvard Kennedy School and the City University of London. His master’s level studies are in the fields of European policy, Media, Communications and Management.


NANCY PRAGER-KAMEL, CHAIRWOMAN OF EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS AND SCHOLARSHIPS.

NANCY PRAGER-KAMEL, CHAIRWOMAN OF EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS AND SCHOLARSHIPS.

Nancy Prager-Kamel is a strategic advisor at the UN and with the US Government on international issues and human rights with a special dedication and expertise on Anti-Traffiking. She has served on many of the most impactful humanitarian boards both in the US and internationally.

Mrs. Prager-Kamel Mrs. Prager-Kamel works, at the UN and within the leading advertising agencies and public relations companies, creating Public Private Partnerships to address and support the Sustainable Development goals. Benefiting worldwide aid organizations and numerous corporate and public stakeholders she creates and protects brand value through the alignment of corporate social responsibility efforts with marketplace needs.

In recent years, Mrs. Prager-Kamel has served as Chair of Board of Governors for the Foreign Press Foundation; US National Commissioner for UNESCO, Vital Voices Global Partnership Board of Directors and its Main UN Representative. Recently she organized and lead a series of UN Panels sponsored by Governments and Agencies on strategic development issues. Mrs Prager-Kamel was Co-director of the United Nations’s “World’s Children’s Day” and began the first program for disabled children at the Metropolitan Museum. She was a founding member of the Black Emergency Cultural Coalition bringing Arts to the men in the New York prison system. Mrs Prager-Kamel presently is US and UN Main Representative for an international think tank formulating government policies on gender issues.

Mrs. Prager-Kamel is Managing Partner in a Swiss Company (Strategic-Expansion Partners) specializing in global initiatives and public affairs for governments and corporations. Before joining SES, she served as the CEO for multinational European Merchant Bank for which she created a registered Broker Dealer, a Public/Private Fund and advised and financed Venture Capital companies. Prior to this she was heading the Investment Banking business of the largest Chinese owned global Broker Dealer in the USA

Mrs. Kamel has been awarded “la Grande Prix Humanitaire de France” from the French Government.


SUSAN TEHRANI MODARESS, VICE PRESIDENT.

SUSAN TEHRANI MODARESS, VICE PRESIDENT.

Susan Tehrani Modaress is a New York-based broadcast and print journalist. She's currently a Diplomatic Correspondent at the United Nations. She has reported from some of the world’s contemporary hotspots, including Egypt, Lebanon, Haiti, Iran, and Iraq. She’s also covered stories across the U.S., from Detroit to Louisiana, California, and Wisconsin. Her work is featured in NewsweekNewsweek ME, Al-MonitorThe Daily JournalistAljazeeraPressTV, and Euronews, among others. Her documentary about hunger in New Jersey and the new working poor was selected by the New York and New Jersey Councils for Social Studies at Hofstra and Rutgers Universities to be part of the 2015-16 high school curriculum in both states. Her documentary The Spending Race, about the role of Super PACs in U.S. elections, was screened at NYU and is viewed and discussed in classes at the school's political science department. Susan is a member of the U.N. Correspondent's Association and a frequent moderator and panelist at various U.N. events regarding international diplomacy.


CLARISSA McNAIR, DEPUTY VICE PRESIDENT.

CLARISSA McNAIR, DEPUTY VICE PRESIDENT.

Clarissa McNair is a foreign correspondent with World Radio Paris.

Clarissa or Cici McNair was born and grew up in Mississippi and graduated from Briarcliff College in New York with a B.A. degree in American history.

As a journalist, she worked for two years for CBC-TV in Toronto as a researcher for Connections which was an eight-hour documentary on organized crime in Canada. In Rome, McNair was an on-air news reader, an international news writer and also produced documentaries for Vatican Radio which broadcast all over the world. She was the weekend news anchor for WROM-TV.

In Los Angeles, she worked for Kings Road Entertainment in all phases of film development.  In Paris, her radio show, Basic Black, (“vignettes of crime, scandal and death”) is broadcast on World Radio Paris every day.  The summer of 2016, she was producer of The Barry Farber Show (radio) in New York City.

McNair’s memoir, DETECTIVES DON’T WEAR SEAT BELTS, was published by Hachette in September 2009.  NEVER FLIRT WITH A FEMME FATALE (2011) is true crime; her novel KISS THE RISK came out in April of 2013 and MURDER, ACTUALLY was published in 2019.  Previous novels (GARDEN OF TIGERS, A FLASH OF DIAMONDS, DANCING WITH THIEVES) were published by St. Martin’s Press and New American Library in the United States, by Century-Hutchinson and Grenada in the UK, and by Martinez-Roca in Spain. 

McNair has been a guest speaker at the annual Marymount-Manhattan Writers Conference, the Hunter College Writers Conference, and the International Women’s Writing Guild, all in New York City.  She has given talks all over the United States, in Canada, France and Switzerland, and has been a featured guest on more than fifty radio programs.

Clarissa McNair is also a licensed private detective. Before moving to Paris in December of 2011, she was working on death-penalty cases in Philadelphia. McNair has worked undercover with the FBI, the Joint Terrorist Task Force and the Organized Crime Intelligence Division of the NYPD.  She has experience in cases of stolen art recovery, money laundering, corporate fraud, missing persons, rape and homicide.   

McNair is a founder of PEN Florida, a member of PEN America, the Overseas Press Club, Mystery Writers of America, and NY Women in Film and Television. She is Deputy Vice-President of the Foreign Correspondents Association of the USA. (www.sleuthstar.com | www.mcnairwrites.com)


MANOJ RIJAL, TREASURER.

MANOJ RIJAL, TREASURER.

Manoj Rijal is a journalist from Nepal and has been a writer of non-fiction (international relations and political science) for more than 10 years. Here in the U.S., he represents Shubha Sanchar Media. His research about the dimensions of ethnic politics has been published in Germany (2015) and is available on Amazon. His second book is in the pipeline and will be published soon by a U.S. publisher. Here in New York, he is mostly interested in covering news related to the U.N., particularly news related to the matters of peace and conflict resolution.


Alan Jude Ryland is an editor and reporter who has worked on interviews with such individuals as former White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci; Maria Fernanda Espinosa, the current President of the United Nations General Assembly; and Mariangela Zappia, the Permanent Representative to Italy for the U.N. He has written about politics and LGBTQ issues for such publications as Salon and The Huffington Post and began his career working as an editor on actor and activist George Takei’s social media team, specializing in breaking news and pushing progressive policy initiatives.

ALAN JUDE RYLAND, GENERAL SECRETARY.

ALAN JUDE RYLAND, GENERAL SECRETARY.


MOMOE BAN, DIRECTOR.

MOMOE BAN, DIRECTOR.

Momoe Ban Braveman has been a business journalist and senior correspondent for The Nikkei, Japan’s largest business newspaper with 3 million copes in circulation. Her coverage has primarily focused on U.S. business and financial markets, including banks and brokerages, venture businesses, and hedge funds. She also covers U.S. cultural and social issues and appears regularly on Japanese TV programs as a financial reporter. Momoe has published and contributed to several books on U.S. business in Japanese. She graduated from Keio University in Tokyo, Japan, with a B.D. in Political Science.


NEGAR MORTAZAVI, DIRECTOR.

NEGAR MORTAZAVI, DIRECTOR.

Negar Mortazavi is a Consultant Editor at The Independent, and a political commentator for BBC, Al Jazeera, i24News, and CGTN. She has over a decade of experience as a bilingual journalist and television host covering Iran, the greater Middle East, and U.S. foreign policy in the region. She was named a Global Young Leader by Friends of Europe in 2017. She has a master’s degree from Brandeis University. She tweets at @NegarMortazavi.


ALAIN TCHEGNON, DIRECTOR.

ALAIN TCHEGNON, DIRECTOR.

Alain Coomlan Tchegnon is a journalist hailing from Cotonou, Benin. His experience began in 2002 at Radio Afrique Espoir, where he covered various topics specific to Benin. In 2006 Alain was afforded the opportunity to travel to Paris, France, where he joined the International Francophone Press Union. After returning to Benin in 2010, Alain covered political elections in West Africa as a television newscaster. As a freelance journalist, Alain writes and publishes articles for the United States Press Agency.


MARTIN JIANGANG WANG, DIRECTOR.

MARTIN JIANGANG WANG, DIRECTOR.

Martin Jiangang is the Senior Correspondent for Xinhua News Agency. He has been covering the U.N. and diplomatic and cultural events in New York since 2016. He was Executive Director of China Features for Xinhua from 2010 to 2016; Senior Correspondent of Xinhua’s North American Bureau from 2006 to 2010; Deputy Editor-in-Chief of Xinhua’s Diplomatic Desk from 2005 to 2006; Senior Correspondent of Xinhua’s New Delhi Bureau from 2002 to 2005, and Editor-in-Chief of World Report, a magazine jointly published by UNESCO and Xinhua, from 1997 to 2002. He is a graduate of the Journalism School of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences with a master’s degree in law.


Bobby Talukdar is from Guwahati, Assam, Northeast India. She represents The North East Times, a daily newspaper. Guwahati is traditionally and socially a very rich part of India and Bobby is glad that she can share stories from Northeast India with the press community in the United States.

BOBBY TALUKDAR, DIRECTOR.

BOBBY TALUKDAR, DIRECTOR.


 

BOARD OF EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS AND SCHOLARSHIPS

 
MARILYN HAFT, BOARD MEMBER

MARILYN HAFT, BOARD MEMBER

Marilyn Haft is an an entertainment and digital media attorney. She specializes in the business and legal affairs of multimedia and communication . industries including the film, television, digital and publishing sectors. Ms. Haft has been a partner at a number of firms and was a test case constitutional law litigator at the national level for the American Civil Liberties Union. Over six years, she litigated in state and federal courts across the country, including the U.S. Supreme Court.

Ms. Haft has served as general counsel and managing director of a financial services company that provided short-term funding requirements for major film studios, independent film producers and distributors. In that capacity, she was responsible for co-creating the financing structure of the transactions. Ms. Haft was also general counsel to a publicly traded multimedia and digital acquisitions company. In that position, she was responsible for all aspects relating to acquisitions including intellectual property issues involving patent, copyright, trademark and trade secrets.

Ms. Haft is also an award-winning independent film producer and worked at NBC News and ABC News as a producer on Peter Jennings’ specials. She also represented Mr. Jennings as an attorney. She was the executive producer of an Emmy award-winning documentary on Preston Sturges for “American Masters” on National Public Television, and co-produced “Grace is Gone,” the John Cusack movie that won the Audience Award at the 2007 Sundance . Film Festival. She is an author of several non-fiction books and a former newspaper columnist. Ms. Haft served the Carter Administration as Associate Director of the Office of Public Liaison in the White House, where she was the liaison to organized . interest groups in the areas of human rights, business and the arts.

She was then appointed Deputy Counsel to Vice President Walter Mondale in the White House where, among other duties, she was the White House’s representative and liaison with the intelligence agencies for the re-writing of their charters. She also participated in the pre-Camp David negotiations. Ms. Haft then ran the New York City campaign for the re-election of the President along with then-Lieutenant Governor Mario Cuomo, who ran the campaign for New York State. Finally, she was appointed as a U.S. Representative to the United Nations, where she was one of the six official representatives of the U.S. to the U.N.

She primarily represented the U.S. in the Third Committee of the General Assembly, which oversees global social and economic issues. Ms Haft continues her work with the UN. She is the President of the Board of the Friends of the World Federation of United Nations Associations. WFUNA is a global non-profit organization representing and coordinating a membership of over 100 national United Nations Associations (UNAs) and their thousands of constituents. WFUNA works with civil society to strengthen and improve the UN and to educate future world leaders including through Model UN programs. WFUNA is the largest international network of people supporting and engaging the UN.

Ms. Haft is a graduate of the New York University School of Law and is a member of the Bars of New York State, the District of Columbia and the US Supreme Court.


HELEN WHITNEY, BOARD MEMBER

HELEN WHITNEY, BOARD MEMBER

Helen Whitney is an award-winning filmmaker with over forty years of experience producing dramatic features and documentary films which have appeared on all the major networks:  NBS, ABC, PBS, HBO. Her subjects have stretched across a broad spectrum of topics including youth gangs; Among her many awards: an Oscar nomination, the Peabody, the Emmy, the DuPont, the Edward.R.Murrow Journalism Award, the Humanitas Prize, the Director's Guild and The Writers Guild Awards. 

Her films have been selected at national and international film festivals, and she was invited to participate as director/writer at the 1982 Sundance Film Festival. She has presented her films and lectured at various universities, churches, and museums including Yale, Princeton, Harvard, Pomona, Stanford, Harvard Divinity  School, The National Cathedral, the Corcoran Gallery. Her recent book: "Forgiveness; A Time to Love and a Time to Hate" was praised by the Dalai Lama who wrote the Forward. 

She served as a member and Chairman of the Board of Film Forum, 1986-1991. She was a member of the Board for New York  Women in Film in 1983. She has been a Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellows since 2001. Helen Whitney lives in New York City. She received her BA from Sarah Lawrence College, and her MA in Victorian Literature from the University of Chicago.


JANE ISAY, BOARD MEMBER

JANE ISAY, BOARD MEMBER

Jane Isay is the author of Unconditional Love: A Guide to Navigating the Joys and Challenges of Being a Grandparent Today.

Her earlier books include Walking onEggshells: Navigating the Delicate Relationship between Adult Children and their Parents, Mom Still Likes You Best: Overcoming the Past and Reconnecting with Your Siblings, and Secrets and Lies: Surviving the Truths that Change Our Lives. She spent over 40 years as an editor, publishing Robert J. Lifton’s Nazi Doctors, Melissa Fay Greene’s Praying for Sheetrock, Patricia O’Connor’s Woe is I, K.C. Cole’s The Universe and the Teacup, Antonio Damasio’s Descartes” Error, and Buzz Bissinger’sFriday Night Lights.

An executive VP at Basic Books, Simon& Schuster, Addison Wesley, Putnam, and Harcourt, she has served on many nonprofit boards, including The New Press, Journalist and Women Symposium (JAWS), and several university presses. She serves as co-chair of the Advisory Committee of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at the Mount Sinai Medical School and Hospital System.


LETA TABORI, BOARD MEMBER

LETA TABORI, BOARD MEMBER

Lena Tabori has been in visual book publishing since 1967 when she joined  Harry N. Abrams, Inc. She left, as their first female vice president, in 1980 to co-found her own publishing company, Stewart, Tabori & Chang, and her own book packaging and licensing firm, Welcome Enterprises where, with her partner Clark Wakabayashi, she continues to package books for publishers like Disney, Rizzoli & National Geographic, nonprofits like God’s Love We Deliver,  and organizations  like Turner Broadcasting. In 1982 she won an Emmy for producing the animated film, Ziggy’s Gift.

In 1995, Welcome Enterprises created a publishing division, Welcome Books, for which she was Publisher. It sold to Rizzoli in 2014. In November 2016, she co-founded with Mike Shatzkin, a publishing icon, a climate change website: www.climatechangeresources.org which will launch in June 2019.She sits on a number of boards and blogs for The Huffington Post.


MONIQUE TAPPIE, BOARD MEMBER

MONIQUE TAPPIE, BOARD MEMBER

Monique Tapie is the co-founder of Triomphant Communications, the sister PR-Public Affairs agency to Gravity, bringing with her over 20 years of Communications & Public Affairs experience working for and advising some of the world's leading companies, government entities and organizations. Gravity and Triomphant were acquired by the Dentsu Aegis Network in 2016.

Prior to founding Triomphant Communications and leading Gravity’s communications practice, Monique headed strategy and communications for a leading agency and its clients throughout the U.S. and Europe. She spent nearly 10 years at Philip Morris U.S.A. in the media relations and public affairs departments where the primary areas of focus were on grassroots communications, crisis communications, reputation management, public affairs and stakeholder engagement, working with influencers, global media and in markets throughout the country.

She currently leads strategy and communications for leading clients such as: The American Board of Physician Specialties, the American Association of Disaster Medicine, the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery, Futures Inc., ShelterPoint Life Insurance and the U.S. Army. Much of her work focuses on multicultural grassroots and influencer communications along with highly regulated industries within the healthcare, managed care, military and Veteran space.

Her expertise has frequently been recognized by the press. Her articles and views have appeared in many publications including but not limited to Advertising Age, Brandweek, Inc. Magazine, L’Express of France and the Washington Post. Most recently, Monique’s work garnered her with the Stevie Award for Best Multicultural Communications Campaign along with PR News twice naming her a finalist in the category of best CSR Communications. She is frequently asked to speak at high profile conferences across the U.S. and Europe. Some recent conferences Monique spoke at include: IQPC's e-Discovery Oil & Gas Conference where she spoke on crisis communications preparedness and management; the Mortgage & Lending Industry Emerging Markets and Diversity Conference in Washington DC, as well as at the London Charter House of Public Relations on effective communications to multi-ethnic markets.

Fluent in French, Monique has extensive experience both in the U.S. and the occidental European markets, having spent time working and living in both New York and Paris. Growing up in an international household feeds her passion and deep understanding of cultures and what drives human behavior.


THOMAS BARAT, BOARD MEMBER

THOMAS BARAT, BOARD MEMBER

Thomas Barat is a journalist, photojournalist, foreign correspondent/editor and Head of the NY Branch Office of a Hungarian based Press Agency (WBPI) and TV Channel (Heti TV) in New York. He is the Founder Editor in Chief of CCO MAGAZINE - the Magazine of the Chief Communication Officers. He has expertise in writing, editing and publishing. He was TV talk show host on one of Hungary's tv-channel called Budapest Television. Thomas Barat is a retired Professor of Communication and he was the Education Director of European Media and Communication Institute. He wrote 17 books in the field of Applied Communication. Mr. Barat was the President of the Ethical Committee of the Association of Hungarian Journalists and also the President of the Media Self-Regulatory Body of Hungary. Thomas Barat is the member of different professional organizations. Among others: Society of Professional Journalists USA, Association of Hungarian Journalists, Hungarian Public Relations Association, Chartered Institute of Public Relations UK, he is the Founder and President the American Hungarian Chamber of Commerce.


ANJALI SHARMA, BOARD MEMBER

ANJALI SHARMA, BOARD MEMBER

Anjali Sharma is a journalist, writer and public relations consultant based in Manhattan. She was born in India and raised in SOS Childrens Villages in Faridabad, Haryana. She came into the care of SOS Village as an infant in 1971.  She attended Bhartiya Vidhya Bhawan school in New Delhi and graduated from University of Delhi. She began her career in broadcast  journalism and worked for Indira Gandhi National Open University Communications Division, Home TV/Sahara TV, BBC, NDTV New Delhi Television. In her spare time she was active in the Yatrik Theater Group in New Delhi. She came to US in 1997 on full scholarship awarded by the Ohio University School of Fine Arts and enrolled in the MFA program in documentary film and MA in Theatre History and Criticism. She moved to New York in 2000 and worked for many Indian print publications since then. She is currently working as senior editor and writer for Society and Diplomatic Review magazine and a member of Foreign Press Center. She is a naturalized U.S. citizen. Ms. Sharma is married and lives in New York City.