90th Annual Meeting & Dinner to Feature Bill Scher on Foreign Policy & the Presidential Election

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The World Affairs Council’s 90th Annual Meeting and Dinner will take place on Thursday, October 13, 2016 at the Springfield Sheraton at Monarch Place at 6:00 PM.  Bill Scher, Contributing Editor to POLITICO Magazine, will speak on Interventionism vs. Isolationism: Which Foreign Policy View Will Win The Presidential Election?

Please register by Thursday, October 6.

The evening will begin at 6:00 p.m. with a cash bar reception.  Dinner and the program will begin at 6:30 p.m.

Tickets are $50 per person and entree choices are chicken, vegetarian or fish.  Register online with a credit card here or call the office at 413-733-0110.

Bill Scher is also a regular contributor to The New Republic and Real Clear Politics. He is a Senior Writer at the Campaign for America’s Future, and co-hosts “The DMZ,” an online TV show with conservative CNN contributor Matt Lewis on Bloggingheads.tv. Bill is the author of Wait! Don’t Move To Canada!: A Stay-and-Fight Strategy to Win Back America. He has made appearances on C-SPAN, CNN International, MSNBC and NPR among other TV and radio outlets, and his opinion articles have been published by the New York Times, New York Daily News and the Chicago Sun-Times.

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Rio 2016 Summer Olympics Watch Party

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World Affairs Council board member Rich Rediker and his wife Gayle are generously opening up their lovely home—38 East Brook Drive in Hampden, MA—to the World Affairs Council for a relaxed and fun evening to watch the Opening Ceremonies of the Rio 2016 Olympics on Friday, August 5, 2016.  Social Time begins at 5 p.m. with dinner at 7.  (Rich says it will end when the last person leaves:  “We never close.”)  If you would like written directions to the Redikers’ home, please contact the World Affairs Council office.

This event is free, but you are invited to bring a dish to share if you would like. Please call the World Affairs Council office at 413-733-0110 or email by Friday, July 29 to let us know how many people are in your party and if you plan to bring any of the following: Entrée, Side Dish, Appetizer, Dessert, Beer, or Soda.    You can also register on our Facebook page.

There is also a pool so please bring a suit and towel if you’d like.

This promises to be a wonderful evening so please join us and feel free to bring a friend or two.

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Longmeadow Wins Academic WorldQuest 2016

Longmeadow Team  (l-r) Coach Ellen Freyman, Jordan Kei-Rahn, Michael Reyes, Mohammed Fazaeli, Lee Duan, Eugene Shao (alternate), Jerold Duquette (alternate)

Longmeadow Team (l-r) Coach Ellen Freyman, Jordan Kei-Rahn, Michael Reyes, Mohammed Fazaeli, Lee Duan, Eugene Shao (alternate), Jerold Duquette (alternate)

On Saturday, February 6, five local high schools participated in the World Affairs Council of Western Massachusetts Academic WorldQuest competition at Chicopee High School.  The four-student teams tested their knowledge of international affairs and current events, answering questions on a variety of topics including NATO, International Trade and Finance, the  Sultanate of Oman, Privacy in the Digital Age, The Arctic,  and Food Security Organization of American States.

The event was moderated by Peter Sokolowski, Editor at Large of Merriam-Webster, and was sponsored by Bacon\Wilson Attorneys at Law, MomentumGroup, and MGM Springfield.

Longmeadow High School emerged as the winner.

Second Place Holyoke High

Second Place Holyoke High

Newcomers Holyoke High placed second, and hosts Chicopee High came in third.  Springfield Renaissance High School and the Springfield High School of Science and Technology also competed.

Rich Rediker and Bill Keyes of Rediker Software dragged us into the 21st Century this year by developing and implementing an electronic scoring system.

Longmeadow has participated in Academic WorldQuest since 2012 and placed second in 2013 and 2014, but this is their first win.  They will now go on to represent the Council and the region at The Carlos and Malú Alvarez 2016 Academic WorldQuest National Competition hosted by the World Affairs Councils of America in Washington, DC at the National Press Club on April 23.

Chicopee High's Trophies from Previous WorldQuest Competitions

WorldQuest Host Chicopee High’s Trophies from Previous Competitions

Any public or private high school in the four westernmost counties of Western Massachusetts or in northern Connecticut is welcome to compete.  For more information, please contact the World Affairs Council office at 413-733-0110.

 

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Academic WorldQuest Returns in February!

Moderator Peter Sokolowski at Academic WorldQuest 2012

Moderator Peter Sokolowski at Academic WorldQuest 2012

After a one year break, the World Affairs Council will be bringing Academic WorldQuest back on Saturday, February 6, 2016 from 2:00-5:00 p.m. at Chicopee High School.  Four-student teams from any high school, public or private, in the four westernmost counties of Massachusetts or Northern Connecticut are welcome to compete.

Peter Sokolowski, Editor-at-Large for Merriam-Webster will return as moderator.

This year’s topics include:

  • Current Events
  • Great Decisions
  • NATO
  • Asia Matters for America
  • International Trade and Finance
  • Sultanate of Oman
  • Privacy in the Digital Age
  • The Arctic
  • Food Security
  • Organization of American States
Academic WorldQuest 2014 champs: Emily Carson, Danielle Bellefeuille, Brian Popovich, Emily Zeno & faculty coach Gina Markowski

Academic WorldQuest 2014 champs: Emily Carson, Danielle Bellefeuille, Brian Popovich, Emily Zeno & faculty coach Gina Markowski of Wilbraham & Monon Academy

Competing teams will be provided with a study guide to prepare.  The winning team will go on to represent the Council and the region at the The Carlos and Malú Alvarez 2016 Academic WorldQuest National Competition hosted by the World Affairs Councils of America in Washington, DC on April 23.

Teams must be registered by December 1 and can get more information by calling our office at 413-733-0110.

To get a sense of what Academic WorldQuest is like, please check out this video from 2014, produced by board member Jeremy Cole, of Jdcole-tv here

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Juliette Kayyem to Speak at 89th Annual Meeting & Dinner

Juliette Kayyem

Juliette Kayyem

We are pleased to announce that former Assistant Secretary for Intergovernmental Affairs at the Department of Homeland Security Juliette Kayyem will discuss homeland security and the intersection of democracy and counter-terrorism measures in conversation with political consultant and Council member Anthony Cignoli for our 89th Annual Meeting & Dinner on Thursday, October 8.  The title will be “Home Sweet Homeland: Lessons for a More Resilient Nation”.

Political consultant & Council Board Member Tony Cignoli will moderate

Political consultant & Council Board Member Tony Cignoli will moderate

The event will take place at the Springfield Sheraton and will begin with a cash bar reception at 6:00 p.m. with dinner and the program at 6:30 p.m.  The cost is $45 per person.  Call 413-733-0110 to register or click here.

Juliette Kayyem has spent over 15 years managing complex policy initiatives and organizing government responses to major crises in both state and federal government. She is the founder of Kayyem Solutions, LLC, providing strategic advice to a range of companies in technology, risk management, mega-event planning, venture capital and more.

Currently, Kayyem teaches new leaders in emergency management and homeland security as a faculty member at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. Kayyem serves as an on-air security analyst for CNN and is featured in a weekly radio program on Boston’s NPR station WGBH, for whom she also hosts a regular podcast entitled “Security Mom.” In 2013, she was named the Pulitzer Prize finalist for editorial columns in the Boston Globe focused on ending the Pentagon’s combat exclusion rule against women, a policy that was changed that year.

Previously, Kayyem was President Obama’s Assistant Secretary for Intergovernmental Affairs at the Department of Homeland Security. There she played a pivotal role in major operations including handling of the H1N1 pandemic and the BP Oil Spill response; she also organized major policy efforts in immigration reform and community resiliency. Before that, she was Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick’s homeland security advisor guiding regional planning and the state’s first interoperability plan, and overseeing the National Guard. She has also served as a member of the National Commission on Terrorism, a legal advisor to US Attorney General Janet Reno, and a trial attorney and counselor in the Civil Rights Division at the Justice Department. She is the recipient of many government honors, including the Distinguished Public Service Award, the Coast Guard’s highest medal awarded to a civilian.

Kayyem is a board member of MassINC, the International Centre for Sport Security, and the Red Cross of MA. She is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Trilateral Commission and DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson’s Homeland Security Advisory Committee.

Anthony Cignoli  is president of the A. L. Cignoli Company, the public relations, political and governmental affairs company he founded more than 20 years ago.  The firm has built a reputation for creating success for clients from challenging situations from referendum campaigns other firms will not touch to assisting in turning around political and corporate campaigns in trouble.  Tony is a veteran of many political campaigns, including elections in Peru and Italy.  Tony is a frequent commentator and political analyst on local radio and television news programs in Western Massachusetts, as well as on New England Cable News, CNN and MSNBC.

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