Craig Calhoun


Craig Calhoun has been President of the Social Science Research Council since 1999. He is also University Professor of Social Sciences and Director of the Institute of Public Knowledge at New York University. Mr. Calhoun received his doctorate from Oxford University and has also been a professor and dean at the University of North Carolina and a visiting professor in Asmara, Beijing, Khartoum, Oslo, Paris, and Berlin.

Under Mr. Calhoun’s leadership, the SSRC has initiated major projects on public social science, global security and cooperation, gender and conflict, digital media and learning, the privatization of risk, religion

Henry Cisneros


Henry Cisneros is Chairman of the CityView companies, which work with the nation’s leading homebuilders to create homes priced within the range of average families.  In 1981, Mr. Cisneros became the first Hispanic-American mayor of a major U.S. city, San Antonio, Texas.  During his four terms as Mayor, he helped rebuild the city’s economic base and spurred the creation of jobs through massive infrastructure and downtown improvements. In 1984, Mr. Cisneros was considered as a possible candidate for Vice President of the United States and in 1986 was selected as the “Outstanding Mayor” in the nation by City and State Magazine. After serving as mayor, Mr. Cisneros formed Cisneros Asset

Lee C. Bollinger


Lee C. Bollinger became the nineteenth President of Columbia University on June 1, 2002.  A prominent advocate of affirmative action, he played a leading role in the twin Supreme Court cases—Grutter v Bollinger and Gratz v Bollinger—that upheld and clarified the importance of diversity as a compelling justification for affirmative action in higher education.  A leading First Amendment scholar, he is widely published on freedom of speech and press, and currently serves on the faculty of Columbia Law School. This past fall he taught a course, A Free Press for a Global Society, focused on issues he addresses in his most recent work, Uninhibited, Robust, and

Nancy Cantor


Nancy Cantor is Chancellor of Rutgers University – Newark. A distinguished leader in higher education, she is recognized nationally and internationally as an advocate for re-emphasizing the public mission of colleges and universities, both public and private, viewing them not as a traditional "ivory towers," but as anchor institutions that collaborate with partners from all sectors of the economy to fulfill higher education’s promise as an engine of discovery, innovation, and social mobility.

Having led a highly inclusive and democratic strategic visioning process at Rutgers University –Newark in her inaugural year, she is now leading implementation of the institution’s first

Mahnaz Ispahani Bartos

Dr. Mahnaz Ispahani Bartos serves on the Public Design Commission as the representative of the New York Public Library, where she has been a Trustee since 2003 and sits on the Executive Committee of the Board. She chairs the Board’s Program and Policy Committee and is a Member of the Capital Planning and Real Estate Committee. Mahnaz spent 30 years as a foreign policy and international security professional and served for a decade as a program executive at the Ford Foundation. She has been a Senior Fellow and remains a Life Member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She has also been a Fellow at the Belfer Center, Harvard University, and The Woodrow Wilson Center at the

Donald F. McHenry

Donald F. McHenry served as Ambassador and US Permanent Representative to the UN from September 1979 until January 20, 1981. As chief US representative to the UN, he also served as a member of President Carter's Cabinet. At the time of his appointment, Ambassador McHenry was Ambassador and US Deputy Representative to the UN Security Council, a position to which he was appointed in March 1977.

Ambassador McHenry is currently a distinguished professor in the Practice of Diplomacy, at the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University, and president of the IRC Group, an international consulting firm.

Ambassador McHenry has studied, taught and worked

Richard Mittenthal


Richard Mittenthal is President and CEO of TCC Group. Since joining the firm in 1989, he has led consulting and planning assignments for a wide range of clients, including the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the Margaret Cargill Foundation, the Jewish Museum, the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, the Studio Museum in Harlem, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, The Children's Defense Fund, the United Way of New York City, the Institute for Advanced Studies, and the Roosevelt Institute.

In 1997, Mr. Mittenthal initiated a collaborative effort with the

David H. Mortimer

President & Trustee

Mr. Mortimer is president and a trustee of The American Assembly, a national, non-partisan,  public affairs forum founded by Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1950 and affiliated with Columbia University. Before joining The American Assembly, he worked at Kuhn-Loeb & Co., an investment bank.

At The Assembly, Mr. Mortimer has overseen more than seventy national projects on domestic and international topics.  He has been involved in every aspect of the planning, implementation, and follow-up and has run over ninety regional Assembly programs with institutions throughout the country, Canada, and Europe.

Mr. Mortimer is responsible for The Assembly's relations with

Pamela Samuelson


Pamela Samuelson is the Richard M. Sherman Distinguished Professor of Law and Information at the University of California, Berkeley. She is recognized as a pioneer in digital copyright law, intellectual property, cyberlaw and information policy. Since 1996, she has held a joint appointment at Berkeley Law School and UC Berkeley's School of Information. Samuelson is a director of the internationally-renowned Berkeley Center for Law & Technology. She serves on the advisory board of the Electronic Frontier Foundation and the Electronic Privacy Information Center, as well as on the advisory boards for the Center for Democracy & Technology, Public Knowledge, and the Berkeley

Anya Schiffrin


Anya Schiffrin is the director of the International Media, Advocacy and Communications specialization at Columbia University’s School of International Affairs.  She teaches courses on media and development and innovation as well as the course  “Media, Human Rights and Social Change”. Among other topics, she writes on journalism and development as well as the media in Africa and the extractive sector. Schiffrin spent 10 years working overseas as a journalist in Europe and Asia and was a Knight-Bagehot Fellow at Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism in 1999-2000. Schiffrin is on the advisory board of the Open Society Foundation’s Program on Independent Journalism and of

Paul Volcker


In the course of his career, Mr. Volcker worked in the United States Federal Government for almost 30 years, culminating in two terms as Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System from 1979-1987, a critical period in bringing a high level of inflation to an end. In earlier stages of his career, Mr. Volcker served as Undersecretary of the Treasury for Monetary Affairs during the early 1970s, a period of historic change in international monetary arrangements. He was subsequently President of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, and in earlier years was an official of The Chase Manhattan Bank.

Mr. Volcker retired as Chairman of Wolfensohn & Co. upon the

Stephen Stamas

Chair Emeritus
Stephen Stamas is chair emeritus of The American Assembly, where he served for over 30 years.  He is a graduate of Harvard College (1953) and earned a Bachelor of Philosophy degree from Oxford University (1955), which he attended as a Rhodes Scholar, and has a PhD from Harvard University (1957).

From 1957-1960, he served both in the US Budget Bureau and as a loan officer in the Development Loan Fund. In 1968-1969, he was Deputy Assistant Secretary for Financial Policy in the US Department of Commerce. Except for this period of government service, from 1960 to 1986 Mr. Stamas was an employee of Exxon Corporation in a number of financial, supply, corporate planning and public

The American Assembly
475 Riverside Drive, Suite 456 New York, NY 10115
212-870-3500 -