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Center’s ongoing work will be critical as Venezuela crisis worsens, a modernized NAFTA is eventually finalized, and region welcomes a new wave of leaders

WASHINGTON, DC – The Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center today begins its five-year celebration at a time of great transformations for the hemisphere. In its first five years, the Center deployed a laser-focused approach to providing new analysis and shaping opinion on some of the key issues in the Americas: from Mexico’s reforms and Colombia’s prosperity to China’s presence and the crisis in Venezuela. Now, the Center is positioned to help shape the future of the region at a time of great uncertainty.

Established to underscore the new reality of Latin America—a region increasingly connected to the world—the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center was the vision of business leader and philanthropist Adrienne Arsht.

“Latin America is at a crossroads, making the mission of the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center all the more crucial. The first five years have shaped a new conversation; the next five years will be critical for doubling down on our impact,” said Center Founder and Atlantic Council Executive Vice Chair Adrienne Arsht. Added Frederick Kempe, Atlantic Council President and CEO: “We set up the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center to fill a policy void. With the crisis in Venezuela today, that mission is all the more imperative.”

Since its founding in 2013, the Center has strategically focused on a core set of the high-priority issues facing the hemisphere with innovative communication tactics to ensure that recommendations reach policymakers, business leaders, and media. In five years, the Center’s work has included: over 40 publications; over 125 events in 16 cities across the United States, Latin America, and China; and 4,000 media mentions, interviews, and op-eds in US and international press.

“The Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center has established itself as a critical partner for those across our hemisphere in its search for comprehensive, locally-driven ideas,” commented Laura Chinchilla, former president of Costa Rica. Added former US Secretary of Commerce Carlos Gutierrez: “I commend the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center for creating real impact with its new ideas, new analysis, and results-driven approach.” 

Over the next five years, the Center’s strategic priorities will include: highlighting the region’s reform agenda; building strong trade and investment ties; looking to the future of the democratic world order; and emphasizing an increasingly global profile. In 2018, the Center is prioritizing work around the three major Latin American elections, NAFTA and commerce discussions, and the crisis in Venezuela. 

“The Arsht Center will continue to set itself apart through its expertise and its focus on strategic engagement with policy and business leaders. This is the time for new thinking and innovative approaches to ensuring that Latin America’s top priorities get the attention deserved,” added Jason Marczak, director of the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center.  

As it looks to its new phase of work, the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center welcomes a new network of nonresident fellows: Daniel Godinho, former secretary of trade of Brazil; Rodrigo Janot, former prosecutor general of Brazil and anticorruption expert; Laura Albornoz Pollmann, former minister of the Chilean National Women’s Service and Director of CODELCO; and André Soares, counselor at the Inter-American Development Bank’s board of directors and trade and China expert.

For more information, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  
 
About the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center
The Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center broadens understanding of regional transformations through high-impact work that shapes the conversation among policymakers, the business community, and civil society. Now celebrating its five-year anniversary, the Center focuses on Latin America’s strategic role in a global context with a priority on pressing political, economic, and social issues that will define the trajectory of the region now and in the years ahead. Select lines of programming include: Venezuela’s crisis; US-Mexico relationship and NAFTA modernization; China-Latin America ties; Colombia’s peace building; the new Brazil; Central America’s future; shifting trade patterns; and energy’s next frontiers. Jason Marczak serves as Center Director.

For more information, visit atlanticcouncil.org or follow us on Twitter @ACLatAm and on Facebook.
WASHINGTON, DC – The Atlantic Council will honor former President George W. Bush; Supreme Allied Commander Europe and Commander, US European Command General Curtis M. Scaparrotti; seven-time Grammy Award winner Gloria Estefan; and Executive Chairman of Starbucks Corporation Howard Schultz with its annual Distinguished Leadership Awards on the evening of May 10 in Washington, DC.

All four distinguished honorees will attend and speak at the event.

“This year’s honorees underscore the essence and range of global leadership,” said Frederick Kempe, Atlantic Council President and CEO. “From a US president who countered terrorism and saved countless lives in Africa, to a Grammy Award-winning singer who made generations dance, to an international business leader and philanthropist who changed the way the world drinks coffee, to an alliance commander who is forging cooperation in the face of uncertainty.”

The Atlantic Council will recognize President Bush with the Distinguished International Leadership Award for, among other accomplishments, his groundbreaking work with the US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), which saved countless lives and created a lasting, effective framework to address HIV/AIDS in Africa. Stephen Hadley, former National Security Advisor to President Bush and Executive Vice Chair of the Atlantic Council will present the award, accompanied by a video message from former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

Supreme Allied Commander Europe and Commander, US European Command General Scaparrotti will be presented the Distinguished Military Leadership Award for his remarkable career over the course of which he has facilitated cooperation and development of common approaches to shared global security challenges and fostered ties among leaders across the NATO alliance and beyond. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Joseph F. Dunford, Jr., will present the award to General Scaparrotti. 

The Atlantic Council will recognize Cuban-American singer, songwriter, actress, author, businesswoman, and seven-time Grammy Award winner Gloria Estefan with the Distinguished Artistic Leadership Award for her legendary career and immeasurable contributions to American music that have transcended generations and captured hearts – earning her the Kennedy Center Honors, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, multiple Billboard Awards, and an induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. Adrienne Arsht, Chairman Emerita, TotalBank, and Executive Vice Chair of the Atlantic Council will present the award to Ms. Estefan.

Executive Chairman of Starbucks Corporation Howard Schultz will receive the Distinguished Business Leadership Award for his visionary entrepreneurial success that transformed Starbucks into one of the world's most respected and recognized brands, and for his principled commitment to improving not only the lives of his employees but also their communities. Mr. Schultz’s award will be presented by Sgt. 1st Class Leroy Arthur Petry, Liaison Officer, US Special Operations Command Care Coalition—Northwest Region.

Among the most significant events on the Washington calendar celebrating global leaders, the Atlantic Council’s Distinguished Leadership Awards is one of the Council’s flagship convenings – bringing together a global audience of over 800 guests from more than fifty countries–including global policymakers, business leaders, military brass, and top-tier media. Past participants and honorees include Presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton, Vice President Joe Biden, Admirals Michael Mullen and James Stavridis, business leaders Marillyn Hewson of Lockheed Martin and Muhtar Kent of Coca-Cola, and humanitarians Bono of U2 and Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein of Jordan, and artist Renée Fleming.

The event is on-the-record and open to press. To request media accreditation or for more information, please contact Travis Horne at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Further details will be provided upon confirmation of accreditation.
Today, the Atlantic Council announced that Dr. Matthew Kroenig has been named the deputy director for strategy in its flagship Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security.

Dr. Kroenig is also a tenured associate professor of government and foreign service at Georgetown University. He previously served in several positions in the US government, including in the Strategy Office in the Office of the Secretary of Defense and the Strategic Assessments Group at the Central Intelligence Agency. He regularly consults with a range of US government entities. He is the author or editor of six books, including The Logic of American Nuclear Strategy (Oxford University Press, 2018), and his articles and opinion pieces have appeared in Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, Politico, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, and many other outlets.

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On Saturday, March 17, the Atlantic Council’s sixth annual Cyber 9/12 Student Challenge in Washington, DC, concluded with the Air Force Cyber College’s “Team Fightin’ Electrons” winning first place.

The Cyber 9/12 Student Challenge is a one-of-a-kind competition designed to provide students across academic disciplines with a deeper understanding of the policy challenges associated with cyber crisis and conflict. Part interactive learning experience and part competitive scenario exercise, it challenges teams to respond to a realistic, evolving cyberattack and analyze the threat it poses to national, international, and private sector interests. The 2018 competition was held on March 16-17 at American University’s School of International Service (SIS), and featured over 150 students from fifteen states across the United States. Student teams competed to offer their best national-security policy recommendations for combating evolving fictional cyber crisis scenarios. This year’s scenario featured the risk of vulnerabilities in blockchain technologies for US national security.

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The evening highlights the “power of storytelling to foster dialogue around the world”

WASHINGTON, DC – The Atlantic Council and the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) on March 15 held a private screening of 12 Strong, the incredible story of the first Special Forces team deployed to Afghanistan after 9/11. The event included an expert panel discussion on the origins of the war in Afghanistan and future US policy for the country and region.  

Held at the National Archives, the screening convened government, business, and military leaders, and included welcoming remarks by Frederick Kempe, Atlantic Council President and CEO.

Charles Rivkin, MPAA Chairman and CEO, took the stage to comment on the power of filmmaking: “Films like 12 Strong offer a gateway to understanding complex events that shape our nation’s history and tell the stories of people who were part of inspiring moments,” said Mr. Rivkin. “Tonight’s discussion is an example of how the film and television industry is committed to using the power of storytelling to foster dialogue around the world.” 

Adrienne Arsht, Executive Vice Chair of the Atlantic Council Board of Directors, commented: “The Atlantic Council seeks to tackle the biggest challenges of our time, so we are constantly looking for new and innovative ways to engage audiences on big policy questions and debates. Movies are an excellent way to connect people to issues that may seem complicated and far away – such as the US involvement in Afghanistan.”

The night also included a moderated discussion by Christine Wormuth, Director of the Adrienne Arsht Center for Resilience at the Atlantic Council, with former senior Commander to US and coalition forces in Afghanistan, Lieutenant General David Barno, USA (Ret.), and former Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence, Dr. Michael Vickers. The panelists discussed the origins of the Afghanistan war, prospects for peace, and the resilience of US service members and families after more than 16 years of war.

About the Atlantic Council
The Atlantic Council promotes constructive leadership and engagement in international affairs based on the Atlantic Community's central role in meeting global challenges. The Council provides an essential forum for navigating the dramatic economic and political changes defining the twenty-first century by informing and galvanizing its uniquely influential network of global leaders.

About the MPAA
The Motion Picture Association of America, Inc. (MPAA) serves as the voice and advocate of the American motion picture, home video and television industries from its offices in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. Its members include: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures; Paramount Pictures Corporation; Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc.; Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation; Universal City Studios LLC; and Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.
WASHINGTON, DC – The Atlantic Council today announced Klara Jordan as Director of the Cyber Statecraft Initiative in its Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security. Ms. Jordan will play a pivotal role in re-invigorating the Initiative’s work on cyberspace as a tool of statecraft, where national security overlaps with foreign policy and economic prosperity, while continuing the Initiative’s path-breaking work on the intersection of cybersecurity and public safety.

Ms. Jordan joins the Atlantic Council from the private sector where she provided government affairs and public policy consulting services to cybersecurity and information technology companies at Orlie Yaniv Strategies LLC. She also previously worked at the policy and privacy division of FireEye, a global cybersecurity company, focusing on providing insights on opportunities and risks that stem from emerging policy, laws, and regulations. Prior to her private sector experience, Klara spent two years at the Council’s Scowcroft Center as deputy director of the Cyber Statecraft Initiative where she focused on cybercrime, cyberespionage, and cyberwarfare, and led programming on NATO and EU cybersecurity. Her background also includes work on international law at the American Society of International Law and at NATO’s Allied Command Transformation.

From data breaches on financial institutions to election meddling in the United States and throughout the world, the international community is facing regular and sophisticated cyber security threats that require robust and creative solutions,” said Frederick Kempe, Atlantic Council President and CEO. “Klara’s strategic insights and experience will be imperative to crafting the cyber policy agenda moving forward. The Atlantic Council is delighted to welcome back Klara in her new role as Director of the Cyber Statecraft Initiative.”

Said Ms. Jordan, “These are critical times when our allies and rogue powers alike are developing their cyber doctrines and capabilities and the private sector possesses unprecedented capabilities and policy influence. This climate requires that the international business, technical, and policy communities collaborate to build sustainable policy solutions to respond to today’s challenges and prepare for future ones.”

The focus of the Cyber Statecraft Initiative is to: 1) Examine the nexus of geopolitics and national security with cyberspace; 2) Continue to build out the new field of cyber safety in the Internet of Things; and 3) To help build the next generation of cybersecurity and cyberspace policy professionals.  Throughout all of its work, the Initiative focuses relentlessly on providing practical, innovative, and relevant solutions to the challenges in cyberspace. The Initiative brings together a diverse network of respected experts, bridging the gap between the technical and policy communities.

For more information on the Cyber Statecraft Initiative, please visit here. To schedule an interview with Ms. Jordan, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
WASHINGTON, DC - The Atlantic Council today announced Richard Stengel as a distinguished fellow with the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab (@DFRLab).

Former Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, TIME Managing Editor and author, Richard Stengel has seen and led the transformation of media in the private and the public sector. At State, he led the department’s efforts at countering both ISIS propaganda and Russian disinformation. Stengel remains centered at the crossroads of media, policy and politics – as a strategic adviser to Snapchat and an analyst on MSNBC – and is currently working on a book for Penguin Press on the global information war.

“I couldn’t be more delighted to join the Atlantic Council and its DFRLab which is at the forefront of using cutting-edge techniques to expose disinformation and falsehood around the world. They are a model of the new kinds of institutions that support the pursuit of truth at a time that it is under an unprecedented threat.”

The longest serving Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs since the job was created in 1999, Stengel brought public diplomacy into the 21st century, modernizing State’s communications, expanding the department’s digital footprint, and ensuring that every embassy was on social media.

At the State Department, Stengel launched and led numerous programs and initiatives, including the Global Engagement Center, the United States’ only stand-alone anti-disinformation entity, the Sawab Center in Abu Dhabi, the first joint American and foreign counter ISIL messaging hub ­– now a template for others around the world – and English for All, a government-wide effort that promotes teaching English abroad. He also oversaw all of the department’s extensive educational exchanges including the Fulbright Scholarship.

Prior to the State Department, Stengel was the managing editor of TIME for seven years, transforming it into a digital and social media powerhouse on a global scale. He oversaw all print, digital, and international functions, and redesigned, re-focused and reinvigorated TIME. Under his stewardship, TIME won its first-ever Magazine of the Year Award as well as numerous other National Magazine Awards, including for general excellence. Stengel also won an Emmy for executive producing the TIME documentary: “Beyond 9/11: Portraits of Resilience.” Before becoming managing editor of TIME, Stengel was President and CEO of the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia.

“I am delighted to welcome Richard Stengel to the Atlantic Council as a distinguished fellow,” said Atlantic Council President and CEO Fred Kempe. “We are in a paradigm moment in which we must harness opportunities and mitigate threats within our rapidly evolving information environment. No one knows how to navigate that information environment better than Rick, who knows every angle from media to government to technology.”

The @DFRLab is at the forefront of open source research with a focus on governance, technology, security, social media, and where each intersect. By publishing what it can prove, or disprove, in real-time, the @DFRLab is creating a new model of research and education adapted for impact, as well as building a global movement to forge digital resilience.


For more information about @DFRLab or to schedule an interview with Mr. Stengel, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
The Atlantic Council is delighted to be ranked in the top ten of global think tanks for defense and national security, for institutional collaboration, and as a think tank to watch.

The Council is also ranked in the top ten in the US in Foreign Policy and International Affairs, Energy and Resource Policy, Conferences, External Relations/Public Engagement, Management, and Quality Assurance and Integrity Policies.

The rankings are contained in the latest 2017 Global Go To Think Tank Index Report, from The Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program (TTCSP) of the Lauder Institute at the University of Pennsylvania. The Index is used to identify and recognize centers of excellence in policy research, forge knowledge and policy partnerships and create a global think tank village. The Atlantic Council is delighted to have steadily climbed up the rankings in the last decade, a mark of our success and recognition by our peers and colleagues.

Some Atlantic Council data from the report:
  • Top Think Tanks in United States: #13
  • Top Defense and National Security: #9 (#6 in the US)
  • Top Foreign Policy and International Affairs Think Tanks: #16 (#8 in the US)
  • Top Energy and Resource Policy Think Tanks: #27 (#10 in the US)
  • Best Institutional Collaboration Involving Two or More Think Tanks (#2)
  • Best Managed Think Tanks: #19 (#9 in the US)
  • Best Think Tank Conference: #14 (#4 in the US)
  • Think Tank to Watch in 2018: #8 – (#5 in the US)
  • Think Tanks with the Best External Relations/Public Engagement Program: #14 (#7 in the US)
  • Think Tanks with the Most Significant Impact on Public Policy: #21 (#12 in US)
  • Best Quality Assurance and Integrity Policies and Procedures: #18 (#9 in the US)
  • Best New Idea: #19 (#11 in the US)
For further information please contact: Andrew Marshall, Vice President of Communications, +1 202 873 0350
Adrienne Arsht Awarded Colombia's Distinguished Order of San Carlos

Founder of the Atlantic Council's Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center receives honor for her commitment to peace and prosperity in Colombia

WASHINGTON, DC – In recognition of her deep support of Colombia at a critical moment of national transformation, Adrienne Arsht, Executive Vice Chair of the Atlantic Council and Founder of its Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center, received the Order of San Carlos at a private ceremony at the Colombian Residence in Washington, DC yesterday. The award was presented to the business leader and philanthropist by Colombian Ambassador to the United States Camilo Reyes on behalf of Foreign Minister María Ángela Holguin and by direction of President Juan Manuel Santos.

The award celebrates Ms. Arsht’s commitment to the prosperity of Colombia and to the implementation of peace in the country.  

“The leadership of Adrienne Arsht is an example of her selfless and constant support to the permanent and positive transformation of Colombia,” said Ambassador Camilo Reyes.

Adrienne Arsht commented: “Colombia is symbolic of the incredible transformations that I see in many parts of Latin America. It’s a country on the rise with the new era of peace holding great promise for the country.”

For half a decade, the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center has led the way in broadening understanding of regional transformations in Latin America under a global context. Central to its work was the creation and implementation of the Colombia Peace and Prosperity Task Force, co-chaired by Senators Benjamin Cardin (D-MD) and Roy Blunt (R-MO). Months after the signing of the historic peace agreement, the twenty-six-member group released A Roadmap for US Engagement with Colombia, a report presented to Colombian President Juan Manual Santos and US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in May 2017. Since then, the Center and the Task Force have continued to build bridges between the United States and Colombia.

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In view of media comment around the Atlantic Council’s Venezuela work, Jason Marczak, Director, Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center, Atlantic Council made the following comments:

“Around the world, the Atlantic Council puts forward policy ideas that help influential actors navigate political and economic change so we can live in a more secure and prosperous world. The deteriorating situation in Venezuela is of great concern.

That is why the Atlantic Council’s Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center follows the Venezuelan crisis very closely and seeks to contribute toward a peaceful, prosperous and democratic Venezuela. Given the gravity of the situation, we have stepped up our analysis and events—all of which seek to encourage a peaceful solution and engage stakeholders who can influence resolution of the worsening crisis.

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