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Preserving Life: Climate Change, Water and Diplomacy

September 9 @ 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

The American Academy of Diplomacy (AAD), in collaboration with the Office of the Vice Provost for Global Affairs at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, will host its annual Joseph J. Sisco Memorial Forum in person in the Nelson Mandela Auditorium on Carolina’s campus at 6 p.m. EDT on Sept. 9, 2021. The event will also be livestreamed via Zoom. The forum, “Preserving Life: Climate Change, Water and Diplomacy,” will examine large-scale diplomatic approaches to climate and water issues.

The evening will feature a keynote by Ambassador Catherine Novelli, senior advisor at Shearwater Global and president of Listening for America. Novelli’s former leadership roles include under secretary of state for economic growth, energy and the environment; assistant U.S. trade representative; and vice president for worldwide government affairs at Apple. Ambassador Ronald Neumann, president of the AAD and former U.S. ambassador to Algeria, Bahrain and Afghanistan, and Ambassador Barbara Stephenson, vice provost for global affairs at UNC-Chapel Hill, will provide a joint welcome.

A panel discussion will follow Ambassador Catherine Novelli’s keynote, moderated by UNC-Chapel Hill vice provost for global affairs, Ambassador Barbara Stephenson. Panelists will include:

  • Brian Atwood, former administrator of USAID and former under secretary of state for management;
  • Ambassador Kenneth Brill, former acting assistant secretary of state for the Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs, and former U.S. ambassador to Cyprus, the International Atomic Energy Agency and the U.N. Office in Vienna and acting ambassador to India; and
  • Aaron Salzberg, director of the Water Institute, Don and Jennifer Holzworth Distinguished Professor in the Department of Environmental Sciences and Engineering at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health, and formerly the first special coordinator for water at the U.S. Department of State.

The forum will take place in person at the Nelson Mandela Auditorium in the FedEx Global Education Center. To attend in person, please register in advance.  

The event will also be live-streamed and recorded via Zoom. Please register in advance to receive a Zoom link.


Nelson Mandela Auditorium, FedEx Global Education Center
301 Pittsboro St.
Chapel Hill, NC 27516 United States
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