February 28, 2011

Former Afghan ambassador joins SAIS as diplomat in residence

Said T. Jawad, Afghanistan’s former ambassador to the United States, has joined Johns Hopkins’ Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies as diplomat in residence.

Jawad, who is based at the SAIS South Asia Studies Program, most recently served concurrently for seven years as the Afghan ambassador to the United States, Brazil, Argentina, Colombia and Mexico. In addition to his position at SAIS, he currently serves as chairman of the Foundation for Afghanistan, a nonprofit whose mission is to build human capital, and is chief executive officer of Capitalize, LLC, a U.S.-based strategic consulting company. He previously served as diplomat in residence at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, within the Future of Diplomacy Project.

As diplomat in residence in SAIS’ Visiting Scholar Program, Jawad will lead the efforts to provide a firsthand understanding of Afghanistan/Pakistan-related challenges. He will take part in a variety of forums, including public speaking engagements, conferences and policy-related planning sessions, on the future of Afghanistan, Pakistan and the region; U.S.-Afghanistan relations; and issues pertaining to terrorism and regional stability, and their impact on global security. In addition, he will interact with faculty and students at SAIS to provide the perspective of the people from that region of the world.

“I am delighted to join SAIS and look forward to contributing to deepening our understanding of—and seeking policy solutions for—the serious challenges that we face in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Central and South Asia,” Jawad said. “I look forward to being part of this prominent school, formed by visionary statesmen to prepare a new generation of leaders to assume their global responsibilities in today’s volatile world.”

“We are extremely pleased that Ambassador Jawad is a part of the SAIS community, enriching our studies and student activity with his experience as a senior diplomat from Afghanistan,” said SAIS Dean Jessica P. Einhorn. “SAIS has traditionally been a training ground for diplomats, and South Asia has surely raised some of the greatest diplomatic challenges. We look forward to learning from someone so recently active in the field.”

Jawad speaks many languages and has worked extensively with international media and law firms. He returned to Afghanistan after 9/11 to assist in the state-building process, playing a versatile and crucial role in the government as press secretary and chief of staff to the president of Afghanistan and as director of the Office of International Relations. In these positions, he formulated and managed strategies, implemented policies, worked with the international community to build and restore state institutions, and prioritized national reforms. Under his leadership, the Afghan Embassy in Washington, D.C., became the most active and successful Afghan mission abroad.

Jawad received an LLB degree from the School of Law and Political Sciences at Kabul University, studied law at Westfalische Wilhelms University in Munster, Germany, and earned his MBA from the Golden Gate University in San Francisco. He is the recipient of many international awards and an honorary doctorate in organizational leadership.