CAMCA  /  Newsroom
Fall 2023 CAMCA Fellows Announcement
SEP 27, 2023

Launched in 2008, the CAMCA Fellowship is a joint program of the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute at the American Foreign Policy Council and the Rumsfeld Foundation.  It brings exceptional rising leaders from Central Asia, Mongolia, the Caucasus and Afghanistan (CAMCA) to the United States for a high-level, intensive exchange experience designed to forge enduring personal and professional connections among its talented participants.  The Fellowship aims to encourage intraregional cooperation among the program countries as well as to foster stronger relations between the U.S. and the CAMCA region, and serves as a starting point for continued dialogue and collaboration among the innovative regional leaders that comprise the program’s alumni network.

As participants of the 27th Fellowship session, the Fall 2023 group will join the program’s growing alumni network of 265 former Fellows.

Throughout their six-week program, Fellows will attend a series of private high-level meetings with top policy-makers, business leaders, journalists, academics, military personnel and regional experts, exposing them to inside perspectives on how opinion making, decision making and policy making processes work in the U.S. The group will also spend a week traveling to Salt Lake City, Utah; Los Angeles, California; and Dallas, Texas for meetings with local businesses and officials, providing them with a view of the U.S. beyond the nation’s capital. In addition to group meetings, program staff will assist Fellows in arranging individual meetings relevant to their independent interests as well as provide opportunities for professional development and networking. The Fellows will also participate in a group presentation at a Central Asia-Caucasus Institute public forum where they will engage with representatives from local embassies, businesses, universities, the media and others interested in current perspectives from the region.

The Fall 2023 Fellows consist of a diverse group of talented regional leaders, pictured left to right below and find their full bios here.

Mr. Mujib Mehrdad – Afghanistan Poet, playwright, translator and journalist

Ms. Lena Zakaryan – Armenia – Director of Policy and Governance at AxelMondrian & Partners, a reputation management company

Ms. Farida Asgarzade – Azerbaijan – Founder and Managing Director of PEACHY, a mobile beauty and wellness tech service company

Ms. Sophie Berishvili – Georgia – Political Secretary (Internal Policy) in the Foreign and Commonwealth Development Office (FCDO) at the British Embassy, Tbilisi

Ms. Ainur Kapparova – Kazakhstan – Co-Founder and Partner at KT Capital Group, an investment and consulting company

Mr. Dastan Omuraliyev – Kyrgyzstan – Co-Founder of the Agroindustrial Development Association

Ms. Ainura Sagyn – Kyrgyzstan – Co-Founder and Director of TAZAR, a green tech waste management company

Mr. Lkhagva Erdene – Mongolia – General Manager of External Affairs & Communication at Oyu Tolgoi LLC

Mr. Altan-Ulzii Chuluun – Mongolia – Information and Data Analysis Division Director of The New Recovery Policy Accelerator Centre in the Office of the Prime Minister of Mongolia

Ms. Nailya Menlasheva – Tajikistan – Economist at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Tajikistan Office

Mr. Nurmuhammet Melayev – Turkmenistan – Portfolio Banker at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) Ashgabat Resident Office

Ms. Nargis Dustmatova – Uzbekistan – Managing Director of Finextra, a banking and financial services system integrator

To learn more about the CAMCA Fellowship Program please visit our CAMCA Fellowship page.


Sarah C. Tonucci
Executive Director, Rumsfeld Foundation
1100 17th Street NW, #402
Washington, D.C. 20036
Tel: (202) 944-1304

David Soumbadze
Director, CAMCA Fellowship Program
509 C Street NE
Washington, D.C. 20002
Tel: (301) 257-5753


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