Genesis at the Crossroads Advisory Board
Arabic Language and Cultural Consultant (part-time consultant)
Of Lebanese heritage, Professor Ajami completed eight years of study on the oud and vocal training at the Lebanese National Conservatory and went on to pursue both a BA and MA in Arabic Language and Literature at the American University in Beirut. He completed his Masters and his PhD in Arabic Literature and Islamics at Columbia University and has taught at UC Berkely, Columbia, Princeton and Washington Universities. He is extensively published and has recited poetry and given lectures and concerts of Arabic music internationally. He currently is the United Nations’ Arabist Reviser/Translator for New York and Geneva.
Charles F. (Chic) Dambach
Lecturer, writer, consultant
Chic Dambach’s wide-ranging career includes serving as chief of staff for Congressman John Garamendi and six years as president and CEO of the Alliance for Peacebuilding, during which he established a network of organizations and professionals to help build sustainable peace and security worldwide. Previously, he restructured and revitalized the National Peace Corps Association, where his career began as a Peace Corps volunteer in Colombia, and helped build Operation Respect’s anti-bullying program. He recently retired from full-time employment, but he continues to consult, and teach and lecture at dozens of conferences and campuses. Dambach’s memoir, Exhaust the Limits: the Life and Times of a Global Peacebuilder, describes a lifetime of service and successful initiatives that helped end the war between Ethiopia and Eritrea and the Congo civil war. He also co-wrote Structures and Practices of Nonprofit Boards and The Business Professional’s Guide to Nonprofit Board Service, both published by BoardSource for which he was a senior governance consultant.
Mark Johnson, PhD
Community Outreach Liason (part-time volunteer)
Executive Director of the Fellowship of Reconciliation/USA, Dr. Johnson is a graduate of Ohio’s College of Wooster holding a Doctorate in Sociology from Columbia University, with alternative service as a conscientious objector in Lebanon, living and teaching in Beirut for six years. He served as Executive Director of the YMCA Silver Bay Association Conference and Training Center, and as a volunteer in environmental, arts, peace and social justice organizations. Over the past six years, he has been active with the Alliance for Middle East Peace and has supported the development of leadership and training programs for young adults at the Jerusalem International YMCA, as a member of the staff of the YMCA of the USA. Mark serves on non-profit boards of Associated Solo Artists/Creative Leaps International, Schools That Can and the International Student Exchange Program, the Advisory Boards of Girls Learn International and Whole Women Healing, and is an Executive Committee Member of the Leadership Forum. He recently returned from an inter-faith dialogue trip to Tehran.
Artistic Advisor, Music Theater Consultant (part-time volunteer)
A graduate of UC Berkeley, the Yale School of Drama, and England’s London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art where he was a Fulbright scholar. Stacy has won three Obies, Best Actor Tony nomination and The Helen Hayes Award, the prestigious Millennium Recognition Award for contribution to classical theater, A Golden Globe, Best Actor Emmy nomination for his TV performance in Hemingway and Lifetime Achievement Award by the San Diego Film Festival.
Business Advisor (part-time volunteer)
Robert Khoury is a Palestinian-American whose diverse childhood experiences living in Beirut, Lebanon, Jordan and Rhode Island drew him to Princeton University and eventually to Saudi Arabia with Price Waterhouse. At Duke’s MBA program he co-coordinated the first business school venture in Egypt and Israel to expose MBA students to cross-cultural business practices, which included a private session with Shimon Peres. Rob worked as a derivatives trader for Bank One and NewArc Investments, a project manager for GETCO and partner in WWFI Recruiting. He is a hedge fund manager.
Music Consultant (part-time volunteer)
Band-leader, vocalist and guitarist Lori Lippitz expanded her BA in music to include graduate work in Slavic studies at the University of Chicago. She founded the Maxwell Street Klezmer Band, launched the Midwest’s Klezmer revival, organized an annual Midwest Klezmer and Yiddish Music Institute, the Maxwell Street Junior Klezmer Orchestra and co-founded the Yiddish Arts Ensemble. She lectures on Klezmer music, is a frequent guest on NPR and Public TV and has multiple recordings. Lori helped create GATC’s original Arab-Jewish Fusion Project.
Peter graduated in 2008 with a combined JD/MBA from Northwestern University, completing their Non-Profit Management 2008 Board Fellows Program with GATC. He graduated with honors from MIT with a degree in Urban Studies and Planning. He currently works at the World Bank in strategic communications and microfinance; in the past as a consultant to the World Bank, he facilitated communications planning for a multimillion dollar technology innovation program. Fluent in Cantonese and English, conversant in Mandarin, French, Dari, Spanish and Dutch, he has served as Communications Consultant for UNICEF/China and as a Research Assistant for the National Bureau of Economic Research. In his five year tenure at Chemonics International, he launched and directed international reconstruction programs, including infrastructure projects and extensive employment programs in Afghanistan. Among his numerous accolades, he was the recipient of the 2006 Daimler Chrysler Reaching Out Scholarship and was further honored as a Corporate Social Responsibility Scholar by Gap, Inc. His GATC Board focus is on strategic planning /operations management.
Amber has spent her career helping clients develop business solutions across a variety of industry sectors. Currently, she is freelancing through her company ROM Strategies, a marketing and sales consultancy focused on getting return on marketing dollars spent. Her current client projects include business development and client relationship management for enterprise accounts in the Midwest, including Fortune 500 healthcare, transportation, logistics and consulting companies. Her career progression includes global marketing and business development leadership roles in pharma, diagnostics, consulting, healthcare insurance exchanges and consumer packaged goods. Her corporate experience includes roles with Fortune 100 companies including Abbott, AON, Baxter, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Merck and ITW. She has a passion for Spanish and her favorite international roles involved covering Latin America. Her non-profit volunteer experience has included board membership with Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association (HBA) and advisory roles with both GATC and The Fuller Center for Lake County. She has been a fellow with the American College of Healthcare Executives (FACHE). Amber graduated from Northwestern University majoring in Chemistry. She holds an MBA from Northwestern Kellogg in both Marketing and Healthcare Administration. Amber lives with her husband Joseph, her son Miles and daughter Paige.
Genesis at the Crossroads Interns
Ritika Dhawan – Biomedical Engineering, Illinois Institute of Technology, 2017
Kaitlin Very – Northwestern University Masters in Communications, 2015
Professional Opera Singer
Emma Silverman– College of Arts and Sciences, University of Pennsylvania, 2015
Genesis Academy Curriculum Development – The Intersection of Dance, History and Culture
Emilie Benda – Political Science, Temple University, Class of 2013
Projects include expansion of Genesis’ existing social media platforms with new campaigns to engage Philadelphia-based university community and the Young Professionals for International Collaboration of the United Nations Association of Philadelphia.
Greg Sutherland – Russian Studies, University of Rochester, Class of 2012
Projects involved Bedouin and Central Asian community ethnomusicology research. Research brief on math and music curricula and the preliminary work to include Genesis at the Crossroads as a member organization of the Clinton Global Initiative.