Speaker Series

Each year, the World Affairs Council of Charlotte recruits internationally renowned government leaders, authors and policy makers for the Speaker Series Program.

Selected speakers present on diverse topics related to global economic crisis, energy policy and climate change, current events, global health, national and global security, foreign policy, public diplomacy and international affairs.

Past speakers include:

  • President Luis Guillermo Solís, President of Costa Rica
  • George W. Bush, former President of the United States
  • Chuck Hagel, former U.S. Secretary of Defense
  • Alan Krueger, former Chairman of President Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers
  • Tom Ridge, former Secretary of Homeland Security
  • General David Petraeus, former Commander, US CENTCOM
  • Sergei Khrushchev, Senior Fellow at the Watson Institute for International Studies (Brown University) and son of the late Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev
  • Major General Michael J. Kingsley, Chief of Staff, United States Africa Command (AFRICOM)
  • Rafael Espada, former Vice President of Guatemala
  • Rick Steves, travel guru and host of Rick Steves’ Europe
  • Carrie Hessler-Radelet, Director of the Peace Corps
  • David Rothkopf, CEO and Editor of the Foreign Policy Group and author of “National Insecurity: US Foreign Policy Making in an Age of Fear”
  • Robert Walker, President, The Population Institute
  • Russell Gold, Senior Energy Reporter for the Wall Street Journal and author of “The Boom: How Fracking Ignited the American Energy Revolution and Changed the World”
  • George Friedman, Founder and Chairman of Stratfor and author of “Flashpoints: The Emerging Crisis in Europe”
  • Sophie Delaunay, Executive Director, Doctors Without Borders (U.S.)
  • Timothy Beardson, author of “Stumbling Giant: The Threats to China’s Future”
  • Shibley Telhami, world-renowned expert on the Middle East and author of “The World Through Arab Eyes: Arab Public Opinion and the Reshaping of the Middle East”
  • Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg, former Minister of Defense, Former Minister of Economics & Technology of the Federal Republic of Germany
  • Adrian Wooldridge, Management Editor, The Economist

Speaker Series Events

Nov. 30: WACC Speaker Series with James Astill, Washington Correspondent and Lexington Columnist, The Economist

Join the World Affairs Council of Charlotte on November 30th as we host James Astill, Washington correspondent and Lexington Columnist for The Economist.  Astill will share his insight on economic and political trends shaping global markets, particularly emerging markets, such as India. With its booming domestic market and growth, enormous population, and position as the largest democracy, it is arguably the main Asian counterweight to China. Don't miss this timely conversation and the opportunity to discuss other ongoing geopolitical transitions in the E.U.

Dec. 7: WACC Speaker Series with Dr. Todd Moss, Senior Fellow, Center for Global Development

Join the World Affairs Council of Charlotte on December 7th as we host Dr. Todd Moss. Moss is an expert in international development, leading the Center for Global Development's research focused on US-Africa relations, energy policy, and private investment. He has also served with the Bureau of African Affairs at the U.S. Department of State, the World Bank, the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), and the Overseas Development Council.

Sept. 21: WACC Speaker Series with Dr. Bernard Weinstein, Associate Director, Maguire Energy Institute

Join the World Affairs Council of Charlotte on September 21st as we host Dr. Bernard Weinstein. As a widely published and consulted energy economist, Dr. Weinstein will share his perspective on the greatest challenges facing the U.S. and world in terms of energy resources, renewable energy, and the latest technologies for reducing global emissions.

WACC Annual Meeting Dr. James Hastings (June 21, 2017)

Join the World Affairs Council of Charlotte on June 21st for our Annual Meeting as we host Dr. James Hastings. He will share his insight on India, US-India relations and the evolution of the country over the past 45 years.