On July 20th, Open Gov Hub hosted a public event to discuss current events in Albania as well as challenges that women face locally, in New York, in Albania, and globally and how women have transformed themselves and their communities through creativity, collaboration, and determination.
The high-level panel consisted of Albanian Ambassador to the United States H.E. Mrs. Floreta Fabe; the founder of AAGW-Association of Albanian Girls and Women Ms. Amy Sebes; the Albanian Director of AAGW-Association of Albanian Girls and Women Mrs. Syri Pepa; and the Executive Director of Kate Spade New York Foundation Mrs. Valerie Biberaj.
The conversation was moderated by Teuta Bucaj, member of the Pan Albanian Federation of America – VATRA, DC Branch.
TEUTA BUCAJ is a member of the Washington DC Branch of VATRA, The Pan-Albanian Federation of America, the oldest active and most prestigious Albanian-American organization in the US, whose nonpartisan mission is to promote a love of American democracy and be the voice of oppressed Albanians in the face of corruption. Teuta is currently the Director of Human Resources for USA for United Nations High Commission for Refugees in Washington DC. She holds multiple certifications as a professional in Human Resources. A native of New York, she graduated from Pace University with a degree in International Relations and Foreign Language. Her love of heritage and humanity led her to become a Fulbright scholar having researched sensitive topics in Albania and Kosova. Teuta volunteers with Saint “Mother” Teresa’s community, and spends time with VATRA’s former President and longtime activist, her father, Dr. Gjon Bucaj.www.facebook.com/Pan-Albanian-Federation-of-America-Vatra-the-Hearth-DC-Chapter
H.E Mrs. FLORETA FABER has served as Ambassador of the Republic of Albania to the U.S. since 2015. Ambassador Faber served as Executive Director of the American Chamber of Commerce in Tirana for fifteen years since its opening in 2000. She has also worked for Deloitte & Touche in both Tirana, Albania and Prague, Czech Republic. She has a degree in Economics from the University of Tirana and graduate degree in International Marketing & Strategy from the Norwegian School of Management in Oslo, Norway. Mrs. Floreta Faber is married to Dr. Edmond Faber, vascular surgeon; they have a daughter, Kesli, and a son, Klint. www.ambasadat.gov.al/usa/en
AMY SEBES is the founder and U.S. director of AAGW and has also served as a high school English, Psychology, ESL, and Critical Thinking teacher for the past three decades in six U.S. states and six countries. She drafted the national anti-trafficking curriculum that has been used in selected Albanian middle and high schools and has also worked with former political prisoners in Burma, U.S. Army soldiers in Germany, orphans in India’s largest slum, and at-risk teens in Arlington, Virginia. She has a B.A. degree in Psychology from Stanford University and a Master’s degree in Education from Tufts University. She is married to Tom Vajda, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for South Asia at the U.S. State Department; they have two daughters, Bette and Emmie. www.aagw.org
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