The McCain Institute for International Leadership hosted a subset of the World Affairs Council Summit on Friday, November 9, as a main event of the Council’s policy institution visits during its annual WACA National Conference.

On the topic of the Future of Democracy and Human Rights, Ambassador Kurt Volker, executive director of the McCain Institute, welcomed the group and gave opening remarks about the Institute, explaining it is “do-tank” rather than a think-tank, and highlighting key campaigns such as the Next Generation Leaders and Mavericks Needed.

The Institute’s Senior Director of Communications, Luke Knittig, provided an overview brief of core programs and initiatives, then moderated a panel with three program leads: Paul Fagan (Director, Human Rights & Democracy), Heather Fischer (Program Manager, Combatting Human Trafficking) and Fron Nahzi (Senior Director, Global Development).  The panelists discussed highlights in their respective programs, efforts the Institute has taken in human rights, human trafficking and international affairs.

The 45 summit member attendees from the World Affairs Council were then able to ask the panelists questions, ranging from the current state of cryptocurrency, suggestions for citizens who live in countries with leaders refusing to step down from power and what Council members can do to increase awareness of human trafficking within their local communities.

“Three of my peers grabbed me to say this was the most informative, interesting visit to a policy institution they’ve had,” said Megan Torrey, President and CEO of the Connecticut World Affairs Council, and de facto group leader of the visiting delegation.

The WACA National Conference annually brings World Affairs Council leaders and members to engage with top government officials, diplomats, business executives, innovators, journalists, educators and students on the most pressing global issues and policy choices.