Spring 2022 CAMCA Fellows Announcement
MAR 25, 2022

The Rumsfeld Foundation is pleased to announce the 10 professionals selected to participate in the Spring 2022 session of the CAMCA Fellowship Program. 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 24th Fellowship session, the Spring 2022 group will join the program’s growing alumni network of 231 former Fellows.

Throughout their six-week program, the 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 Philadelphia 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, the program staff will assist Fellows in arranging individual meetings for their independent research projects 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 Spring 2022 Fellows consist of a diverse group of talented regional leaders, pictured left to right below:

Lt. Col. Mohd Musadiq Yaftali – Afghanistan Former Officer in the National Army of Afghanistan and member of the Afghan National Army Special Forces. Research topic: "Prospects of Reconstruction of Afghanistan after the Peace Deal."

Dr. Omar Sadr – Afghanistan – Research Scholar at the Center for Governance and Markets in the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Pittsburgh. Research topic: "The Need to Increase Regional Research Partnership."

Ms. Konul Aliyeva – Azerbaijan – Partner and General Manager at Horeca Kiyv LLC, one of the leading companies in Azerbaijan and Ukraine that provides professional cleaning and hygiene products, services and trainings in the field. Research topic: "Alternative Funding of SMEs and Entrepreneurship through Interregional Dialogue."

Mr. Giorgi Cherkezishvili – Georgia – Head of the Secretariat of the Investors Council of Georgia, an independent advisory body to the Prime Minister of Georgia, which was established by the Government of Georgia and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. Research topic: "Digitalization in the Transport Sector as a Key Factor for Development and Cooperation in the CAMCA Region."

Ms. Nino Zambakhidze – Georgia – Chairwoman and Co-Founder of the Georgian Farmers’ Association, an umbrella organization representing interests of Georgian farmers. Research topic: "How the EU-Georgia DCFTA Influences SMEs and can Social Media Help to Overcome Related Challenges?"

Ms. Zaure Tursunova – Kazakhstan – Founder and CEO of The Steppe, a Kazakhstani media start-up. Research topic: "Enhancing Sustainable Development in the Areas of Education, Environment and Media Literacy in Central Asia."

Mr. Ermek Baisalov – Kyrgyzstan – Editor of Central Asian Bureau for Analytical Reporting (CABAR.asia), a digital platform and an online think tank project of Institute for War and Peace Reporting. Research topic: "How can Expert Analytics Influence the Decision-making Process in Central Asian Countries?"

Mr. Irmuun Demberel – Mongolia – Economic Adviser to the Prime Minister of Mongolia. Research topic: "Financial Integration of Central Asia through Establishing a Central Asian Development Bank."

Mr. Sohib Ikramov – Tajikistan – Founder and CEO of Simplex, Tajikistan’s leading translation and event management company, as well as a Co-founder and CEO of a startup company, TezUsto, an online service connecting local professionals. Research topic: "Regional Digitalization for Economic Development: The Case of Tajikistan."

Ms. Nodira Mukhammadkulova – Uzbekistan – Project Manager for the UNDP, UNODC, UNESCO Joint Program ‘Youth for Social Harmony in the Fergana Valley’ funded by the UN Peacebuilding Fund. Research topic: "What Uzbekistan can Learn from the U.S. Experience in Innovative Public Administration and Digital Transformation?"

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



Sarah C. Tonucci
Executive Director, Rumsfeld Foundation
1030 15th Street NW, B1 # 366
Washington, D.C. 20036
Tel: (202) 944-1304
E-mail: sarah@rumsfeldfoundation.org

David Soumbadze
Director, CAMCA Fellowship Program
509 C Street NE
Washington, D.C. 20002
Tel: (301) 257-5753
E-mail: soumbadze@afpc.org


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