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Peacesharing Forum - Speakers

Abdul Ahmed

Program Manager, Global Peace Foundation Nigeria 

Abdul Ahmed is a moderate Muslim youth with more than ten years of experience in development work, conflict mitigation, and peace-building. He has achieved academic excellence with Masters in Conflicts, Peace, and Strategic Studies.

He worked with various organizations that deal with issues of conflict and livelihood projects in Nigeria. He worked as Women Program Coordinator for Hope for the Village Child Foundation, as Acting Executive Director for Carelink Resource Foundation, and presently the Program Manager for the Global Peace Foundation Nigeria with excellent community service records and strong work ethics.

He has volunteered for various organizations and has been a consultant in development work and peace-building. 


Dir. Margarita Consolacion Ballesteros

Director IV, International Cooperation Office, DepEd, Philippines

Director Margarita Ballesteros heads the International Cooperation Office of the Department of Education (DepEd). She is the focal person for  ASEAN, SEAMEO, APEC HRDWG Secretariat, UNESCO, and Bilateral engagements within the region. She also shepherds the teacher exchanges like the Kore Phil Teacher Exchange Program (KPTEP).

The  Royal Institute Singapore recognized her contribution to the education sector and has awarded her Doctor Fellow for International Education and Management.

Her areas of interest include women and girls especially in areas of conflict.


Tracey Burns

Senior Analyst in the OECD’s Centre for Educational Research and Innovation

Tracey Burns is a Senior Analyst in the OECD's Centre for Educational Research and Innovation. She heads a portfolio of projects including Trends Shaping Education, 21st Century Children, and Strengthening the Impact of Educational Research. She previously led Innovative Teaching for Effective Learning. Her most recent OECD publications are Back to the Future of Education: Four OECD Scenarios for Schooling, Education in the Digital Age: Happy and Healthy Children and Educating 21st Century Children: Emotional Well-Being in the Digital Age. Previous to her time at the OECD she conducted research on language acquisition in children and newborn infants and was an award-winning lecturer on infant and child development. Tracey holds a B.A. from McGill University, Canada, and a Ph.D. in experimental psychology from Northeastern University, United States.


Alexandra Chandran

Head of Partnerships and Global Sales, CitizenLab

Alexandra leads Partnerships and Global Sales at CitizenLab, growing the mission and impact with a variety of partners across different countries and organizations. She works with in-country partners in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Denmark, Poland, Mexico, Romania, and Serbia, and with them, she is building a network of citizen participation experts who can develop the impactful use of CitizenLab in their country market. Previously, Alexandra has worked for the Open Data Institute leading business development and securing opportunities for the ODI across public and private sectors, to positively influence data policy and decision-making. She has also worked in the fields of Financial Tech and Law.


Nilufar Choudry, Ph.D.

Senior Advisor, Partnerships and Development, Global Peace Foundation

Dr. Nilufar Choudry is the Senior Advisor, Partnerships and Development at the Global Peace Foundation (GPF). She has more than 20 years of experience in program design and management, proposal development, project evaluation, and teaching. Currently, she supports GPF’s global strategy on partnerships, program implementation, and resource development.  She previously served as Director of Research and Executive Office at Meridian International Center, Director of Development at Center of Concern, Research Fellow at the Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies, and Assistant Professor, Department of International Relations, Dhaka University. She completed her Ph.D. in Political Science from Carleton University, Canada.


Alice Coulibaly 

International Programs Office, Peace Direct 

Alice Coulibaly works as an International Programmes Officer at Peace Direct, a London-based peace-building NGO. In her role, she manages their strategic portfolio in West Africa and in the Horn of Africa. Alice provides technical, administrative, and financial support to grassroots organizations and helps them design, carry out peacebuilding activities. She currently oversees several youth-focused projects in Sudan, Mali, and Nigeria. Before joining Peace Direct, she was working at the UN Department of peacekeeping Operations as a Political Affairs intern. She has a background in international law and peace studies. 


Darla K. Deardorff

Executive Director, Association of International Education Administrators

Dr. Darla K. Deardorff is Executive Director of the Association of International Education Administrators, a leadership organization. She is also a research fellow at Duke University and holds faculty appointments at universities in Japan, China, Canada, and South Africa. She has worked in the international education field for over twenty-five years with experience in study abroad, international student services, cultural programming, and ESL teaching/teacher training. Founder of ICC Global, a global research network on intercultural competence, and Founding President of the World Council on Intercultural and Global Competence, she has lived, taught and worked in Germany, Japan, and Switzerland. Recent projects include advising the OECD's PISA Global Competence Project and the UNESCO Intercultural Competence Project. Author/editor of 10 books and numerous other publications, her latest book is Manual for Developing Intercultural Competencies: Story Circles (Routledge/UNESCO, 2020) - which is open access in 5 languages.


Tony Devine, Ed.D.

Vice President, Education, Global Peace Foundation Intl.

He works with Ministries of Education, educational systems, schools, universities as well as private and civil society stakeholders to reimagine what it means to educate in preparing students to be future-ready and be successful in all aspects of their lives. He oversees the development of the Transformation of Education, Moral and Innovative Leadership, Character and Creativity, Entrepreneurship, Technology, and Digital Literacy programs in counties around the world. These programs and advocacy efforts develop character and values that guide skills such as creativity, problem-solving, communications, collaboration in the application of new knowledge for the greater benefit of humanity. He is a contributor to the Advisory Group of OECD’s Future of Education & Skills 2030 Project. He is the President of Global Peace Foundation Ireland where oversees International Peacesharing Programs and Forums that expose practitioners, educators, peacebuilders, government representatives, and faith leaders to values-based peacebuilding and reconciliation.


Rev. Canice Chinyeaka Enyiaka, Ph.D.

Program Development Specialist, Interfaith/Community Outreach, Global Peace Foundation

Rev. Canice Chinyeaka Enyiaka holds a Ph.D. in Development Studies and Public Policy focusing on Peacebuilding, Human Security, and Integral Development. He is a FLAS Fellow, a SASAKAWA Fellow, and a member of the Sylff Association.

Rev. Canice is the Program Development and Interfaith/Community outreach Specialist at the Global Peace Foundation. He has organized, moderated, and participated in various interfaith and community-driven peacebuilding and development projects, programs and conferences locally and internationally. A firm believer in the inviolable dignity of every person and the whole person, Rev. Canice upholds that the respect and promotion of human dignity are both the foundation and strength of a peaceful, healthy, and happy global community.


Dr. Willie Aziegbe Eselebor

Professor, Institute for Peace & Strategic Studies, University of Ibadan, Nigeria 

Willie Eselebor holds Ph.D. in Peace & Conflict Studies; and lectures at the Institute for Peace & Strategic Studies, University of Ibadan, Nigeria. He is the immediate past President, Society for Peace Studies and Practice (2011-2016). He had an early career with the Nigeria Immigration Service (1980-2012); Participated in the drafting of the Election Security Personnel Manual (2020), the ECOWAS Negotiation and Mediation Manual (2018) and the Protocol to the Treaty Establishing the African Economic Community Relating to Free Movement of Persons, Right of Residence and Right of Establishment (2018). He has consulted for the EU, AU, ECOWAS, IOM, ICMPD, GIZ, DCAF and Rwanda Peace Academy on various projects in Africa.


Leonard Faustino

Program Director for Youth Development, Global Peace Foundation - Philippines

Leonard Faustino is the Program Director for Youth Development of Global Peace Foundation in the Philippines.  He leads series of exchange programs in various communities in the Philippines with volunteers coming from Korea, Japan, USA, Brazil, Panama, Mongolia, and Taiwan. He is one of the speakers during the Youth and Service Forum at the World Bank Headquarters in Washington DC and served as moderator for the high-level youth session of the International Young Leaders Assembly at the General Assembly Hall of the United Nations in New York. He is also the Youth Co-Chair of the Asia Pacific Peace and Development Service Alliance. He was awarded as one of the outstanding students of the Young Men Christian Association. 


James P. Flynn

International President, Global Peace Foundation

As the executive officer of a large, global network of chapters, he provides leadership and management for Global Peace Foundation’s diverse portfolio of peacebuilding and international development work.

His robust leadership is reflected in the planning and convening of Global Peace Leadership Conferences on four continents and in the preeminent Global Peace Convention, as well as in the organization’s branding, educational content, and operational management.

Mr. Flynn has worked in the nonprofit sector for more than thirty years and served as an educator, international conflict mediator, interfaith facilitator, and grassroots leader of family strengthening and youth violence prevention programs.


Matt Gamble

Programme Co-ordinator, Co-operation Ireland

Matt joined Co-operation Ireland in 2019 and helps co-ordinate two Youth and Education programs – Amazing the Space and Entwined Histories. Both programs bring students from different backgrounds together to work alongside each other and to explore the complexities and narratives of the past.

Having graduated from Queens University Belfast in Archaeology and Ancient History, Matt began his career as a tour guide and archivist in a local museum before turning his attention to teaching. The experience of working as a History teacher in the school has really helped in his current role in motivating students to work together and make new friendships.

In his spare time, Matt enjoys reading history and playing sport. He has a keen interest in the First World War and enjoys regular visits to the Western Front. If he’s not telling you stories from the trenches, he’ll be giving you a run-through of the weekend’s rugby matches.


Alfred Indimuli Kahi

President, National Chairman of Kenya Secondary Schools’ Heads Association (KESSHA)

He is the Principal of Machakos School, in Kenya. He is the former chief principal of Chavakali National School, during which time he received an award as an outstanding principal shujaa of the year 2016. Mr. Indimuli is the Chair of the Africa Confederation of Principals and Council member of the International Confederation of Principals. He is a great contributor in the education sector in his role as a member of the task force on Competency-Based Education (CBC) and a member of the task force on the COVID-19 Education Response Committee.


Ashley Law

Youth Specialist, IFES

Ashley Law is the youth specialist at the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES), where she provides technical support to design and deliver tailored programming to promote young people’s civic engagement and political participation. She previously worked as a program officer for IFES’ Asia-Pacific team, managing projects in Papua New Guinea, and Bangladesh, working with election management bodies to hold inclusive elections, increase youth participation in elections, and partner with universities to develop civic engagement initiatives. She received her bachelor’s degree from Purdue University and her master’s degree in international peace and conflict resolution with a concentration in youth and peacebuilding from American University.


Maryam Lawal

Digital Development Global Practice, World Bank

Maryam Lawal, PhD. an analytically minded young professional with experience and interest in the link between Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) and socio-economic development, with a particular focus on mobile innovation. Her professional experiences are broadly situated within global development practice. Within this area, she sought experience at the World Bank Group in Washington D.C., the GSMA in London, the Federal Government of Nigeria (Federal Ministry of Environment and Federal Ministry of Health), and with international Non-Governmental Organisations.

Maryam’s academic achievements include a PhD. in Development Planning from University College London (UCL), M.S. in Management, Information Systems and Digital Innovation from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), and B.S. Information Systems from the University of Hertfordshire. Maryam speaks German and Hausa Languages.


Lasse Leponiemi

Executive Director & Co-founder, HundrED, Finland

Lasse Leponiemi is passionate about youth future orientation and he has worked in education and career-planning since 2006. He is Executive Director and Co-Founder at HundrED - a Finnish not-for-profit organization, which seeks and shares inspiring innovations in education. HundrED selects annually 100 pedagogically sound education innovations around the world and helps them spread with their wide network of educators in over 100 countries.



Cat Lockman

International Director of Organizational Development, Global Peace Foundation

Cat Lockman is a highly credentialed executive leader with deep expertise in the nonprofit and international development sphere. Cat has led design, implementation and for U.S. and international institutional, government, and multilateral projects, grants and contracts.  Cat’s recent expertise includes topics like online safety and digital citizenship, democracy strengthening and election violence prevention, preventing violent extremism, building community resiliency, and community peacebuilding.

Cat translates program outcomes into compelling content with a communications portfolio that includes conferences, panels, stakeholder interviews, community events and programs, multimedia productions, and other digital content.


Bashdar Sarbaz Mawlud

General Directorate of Educational Planning, Ministry of Education of Kurdistan Region of Iraq

He has worked for the Ministry of Education as Director of Educational Planning for 11 years. He is also responsible for internally displaced persons (IDPs) and Syrian refugees in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, which now represent 28% of Iraqi Kurdistan's total population. In Erbil, the capital of the Iraqi Kurdistan region, Pope Francis on his recent trip thanked the Kurdish government for taking in more than 140,000 Christians who had fled their homes on the Nineveh Plains during the ISIS takeover. Bashdar works on several projects on improving the quality of education in the basic education in KRI. He has a master’s in Educational Planning and Management from the UNESCO International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP-UNESCO) Paris, France. 


Ijeoma Nwoke

HCM Senior Solution Engineer, Oracle

Ijeoma Nwoke is a tech industry expert with over a decade of experience in IT advisory project management, and enterprise support, as well as a strong passion for capacity-building and digital citizenship. Ijeoma works at Oracle as an HCM Senior Solutions Engineer, helping C-Suite IT stakeholders optimize their HR processes via customized Cloud solutions.

She is a qualified Project Management practitioner, having achieved the PRINCE2 Certification, and a Foundational Certificate in Agile project management. She has a BSc in Computer Science from Babcock University and an MSc in Purchasing Supply Chain Management from The Robert Gordon University.


Caroline Nyamu

Civic Engagement Manager, Uraia Trust

Caroline Nyamu is an experienced international development practitioner with 19 years of field experience implementing humanitarian assistance, development, and governance programming in Kenya, South Sudan, and Sierra Leone. Currently, she manages the civic engagement work of Uraia Trust, which involves providing citizens with practical mechanisms to address democratic governance concerns and priorities and realize their constitutional aspirations envisioned in the Constitution of Kenya. Caroline is passionate about empowering individuals and communities to become agents of their change towards realizing their human rights and ultimately their full potential.


Samantha O'Riordan

Program Officer at International Telecommunication Union (ITU), United Nations, Geneva

Ms. O’Riordan is an experienced telecommunications professional with over 20 years of experience.  Prior to joining ITU Ms. O’Riordan worked at the GSMA, the global organization representing the mobile industry, in the Government & Regulatory Affairs and Mobile for Development departments.  Prior to the GSMA, Ms. O’Riordan worked on multiple projects with various European telecommunication operators. Ms. O’Riordan holds a Masters in International Business and a BSc in International Business with French.


Betty Ochieng'

CEO, Insights Africa Group Ltd

Betty Ochieng’, a Master’s of Science (Msc.) graduate from the University of Leicester, UK. She is a renowned HR Director, Organization Development/Change Expert and CEO having worked with Multi-National, International NGOs and a US Government agency. She is an advisor to the Harvard Business Review Advisory Council, has served in private sector boards as a Non-Executive Director and is the founding President of Insights Africa Group Ltd later renamed Inspired Insights Africa Ltd. Betty is also the founder of Thrive Africa Tv, Zadock Star International Foundation and The Women of Valor (WoV) Movement. A well sought-after Life and Executive Coach, she is also an ordained minister. Betty is married to Josiah Ochieng’ and has four children.


Lynn Paine

Professor, Department of Teacher Education, Associate Dean, International Studies in Education, College of Education, Michigan State University.

Lynn Paine is the associate dean for International Studies in the College of Education. She also is a professor of teacher education, and an adjunct professor of sociology and the Center for Gender in Global Context. Her work focuses on comparative and international education and the sociology of education, with an emphasis on the relationship between educational policy and practice, the links between education and social change, and issues of inequality and diversity. Much of her work has involved the comparative study of teachers, teaching, and teacher education, supported by research in China, the United States, and England. Dr. Paine's work on learning in and from practice draws on her ongoing comparative research of teacher education. Her participation in "Learning from Mentors," a comparative study of mentored learning to teach, and her more recent NSF-funded leadership of a comparative case study of policies and practices that support beginning teacher learning will contribute to shaping the program. Having been visiting professor at several universities in China, Hong Kong, and Singapore, Dr. Paine brings extensive experience in working across language, cultural and policy differences to talk about teacher education.


Ashok Pandey

Director, Ahlcon Group of Schools, India

Ashok has spent more than three decades in the education sector. He has pursued, over the years, better ways to impart knowledge, values, and joy to learners. Presently Director, Ahlcon group of schools in Delhi, India, Ashok has been a successful school principal, author, speaker, researcher, and facilitator. Extensively traveled, Ashok led Indian school Principals' delegation to the US, UK, Australia, and Malta. Multi-Award winner, he received The National Teachers' Award by the President of India in 2012. Ashok sits on the Governing Body of the National Council of Teacher Education (NCTE ), among his many other assignments.


Nicole Punzi

Organizational Development Associate, Global Peace Foundation

Nicole Punzi works in the organizational development office of the Global Peace Foundation, where she supports project development in the areas of peacebuilding, youth, civic engagement, and P/CVE. She also currently works with Transparency International in Berlin, Germany, where she contributes to building a global portfolio of projects on political integrity and citizen engagement. Previously, she has contributed to the capacity building of grassroots peacebuilding organizations in Israel and Palestine and has conducted research on the intersection of food, peace, and women in diaspora communities. Nicole received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Maryland, College Park, and her master’s degree in conflict resolution and mediation from Tel Aviv University.


Prof. Karanam Pushpanadham

Department Educational Administration, The Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, India

He has conducted research and community outreach programs, guiding doctoral research scholars, providing consultancy services in Total Quality Management in Education, Teacher Development, and Educational Leadership. Member of the Senate of the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda (2012). Coordinator of DSA-I Research Project of University Grants Commission, Government of India in the Department of Educational Administration (2020). Swedish Institute’s Guest Fellowship at the Institute of International Education (IIE), Stockholm University, Sweden. Active Member of E-ASEM of ASEM Lifelong Learning Hub, University College Cork, Ireland. Member of Academic Board, Indira Gandhi National Open University, New Delhi. Project on Interdisciplinary Research In Educational Management under UGC/DSA-I research grants 2019-20. A Study on the Perceptions of Students on Assessment Practices in Higher Education under UGC/DSA-I research grants 2018-20.


Peter Sheridan

Chief Executive, Cooperation Ireland 

Peter Sheridan joined Co-operation Ireland in 2008 as Chief Executive. In addition to his role as CEO, Peter is an Equality Commissioner in Northern Ireland and he is also a Commissioner with Londonderry Port and Harbor. Peter is a former Assistant Chief Constable with the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) (formerly the Royal Ulster Constabulary). He retired from the police service in 2008 having spent 32 years policing in Northern Ireland. Before retiring he was responsible for the Crime Operations Department, which included serious and organized crime investigations including terrorist investigations. A graduate of Cambridge University, Peter attended the FBI Academy in 1999 and was awarded the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the Queen’s Birthday Honors List in 2008 for services to the community.


Dr. Lisa Schirch

Toda Peace Institute Expert

Dr. Lisa Schirch is Senior Research Fellow for the Toda Peace Institute, where she directs the Social Media, Technology, and Peacebuilding program. She also co-chairs the Alliance for Peacebuilding working group on Technology and Peacebuilding. Her most recent book Social Media Impacts on Conflict and Democracy: The Tech-tonic Shift (Routledge 2021) features 13 local case studies from Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America. The book maps how digital technologies are driving “social climate change” including polarization and extremist anti-immigrant and anti-minority purity narratives.



Daniel Tucker

West Africa Project Manager, Conciliation Resources

He has over nine years of experience in designing and managing peacebuilding initiatives. His primary area of interest is supporting community-based response initiatives so they have the skills, confidence, and space to bring about meaningful and inclusive social change. For the past four years, he has led the delivery of Conciliation Resources’ participatory peacebuilding projects in Nigeria with a particular focus upon herder-farmer violence in the Middle Belt region and the Boko Haram insurgency in Northeast Nigeria. Prior to joining Conciliation Resources, he worked for a foreign affairs think tank and was responsible for conflict and political risk analysis within the MENA region.


Kerstin Wilmans

Co-Founder + Executive Board Member, Global Goals Curriculum e.V. Berlin. Contributor, OECD’s Future of Education and Skills 2030 Project

Kerstin’s passion is to create learning and working environments that empower people and communities to develop their full potential, collaborate effectively, and shape a sustainable future. The GGC-Team works with the German UNESCO Commission, education ministries, and other institutions to establish a new learning and working culture within schools, organizations, and communities by setting up a program to innovatively and sustainably develop education in a whole system approach. Kerstin is also a contributing member of OECD’s Future of Education and Skills 2030 Project and leader of the working group “Engagement and Implementation" of the OECD Learning Compass 2030.