"Promoting Cross-Cultural Relationships one handshake at a time."

May 2020
In this issue:

Honorary Consulate of Canada in Louisiana

Royal Danish Consulate of New Orleans

Honorary Consulate General of Japan
Honorary Consulate of Switzerland
Honorary Consulate of Ukraine

Laura Plantation

by Alla Rosca, NOCDC Board

Since my husband and I joined the New Orleans Citizen Diplomacy Council in 2008 we’ve had opportunities not only to meet and host for dinner people from different countries, but to stay in touch with our guests and extend our international ties. Last year, among the (State Department's International Visitor Leadership Program) visitors were two from Morocco, where my daughter, Felicia is currently working on an international project.

Our guests included Mr. Abdelhadi Said, the head of the Europe and America Division, Customs and Excise Administration of Ministry of Economy and Finance of Morocco. And on another occasion we hosted Ms. Laila Berchane, the Director and Co-founder of Play Academy in Morocco. When I was planning to visit Morocco in early 2020, I immediately got in touch with my friends from Rabat and Casablanca.

They facilitated my visit to the Al Akhawayn University of Ifrane (AUI), or the American University, as it is named, because it adopted the American system of education. I visited AUI and I gave a lecture to Dr. Sallem Koubida’s class on Politics and Economics: New Trends. It generated a lot of discussion, and afterwards, the students were interested how the case studies of the US and Morocco compared. Also at AUI I met with the Dean of SBA, Dr. Mary Grace Neville over lunch, and we discussed new possibilities of academic intercultural cooperation.

Traveling to Casablanca I was glad to see Laila again, whom I met in New Orleans in October 2019, as she was one of the participants of “Women in STEAM” IVLP delegation. We discussed, among other topics, the opportunities and challenges for non-governmental organizations to obtain funding and how to extend international cooperation.

Both Abdelhadi and Laila were gracious hosts in Morocco. Following their advice I visited the historical site of Chellah, the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art and the Mausoleum of Mohammed V in Rabat; the Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca and the Saadian Tombes, the Palas Bahia, and the Palas Badi in Marrakesh. Also, their suggestions on the best Moroccan restaurants  were very valuable, as I really enjoy Mediterranean cuisine. And of course, I didn’t pass on the opportunity to go to the famous Rick’s Café Casablanca.

After my trip, I connected with Abdelhadi and Laila via social media, as well as other colleagues from the Al Akhawayn University of Ifrane.  I introduced all of my Moroccan contacts in academia to each other, and now we are all connected. I was glad to learn from them during this time of the pandemic isolation that they are doing well.

In Morocco, I met new colleagues and made new friends, and we extended our international network of like-minded people thanks to the New Orleans Citizen Diplomacy Council (NOCDC) and State Department’s International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP). This is yet another showcase of the opportunities of being NOCDC member and participating in their programs. 



From today through June 2nd, please help us keep the world connected by donating generously at 

Thank you so much for your help to keep our doors open to the world!

We are pleased to kick off our Webinar Series with a virtual discussion on the implications of the current Covid-19 pandemic to global diplomacy.  We are currently planning our first webinar “Civic Engagement in the Age of Coronavirus” in early June.  Please stay tuned via our newsletter and website at www.nocdc.org and be on the lookout for an announcement for the date and time.
Thank you to our professional resources who met with our
international guests in January, February, and March 2020

Albert Lepage Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at Tulane University - Ms. Ann Marshall Tilton, Manager of Community Engagement
Ashe' Cultural Arts Center - Mr. Frederick Delahoussaye, Chief Creative Officer
Covenant House - Ms. Sheri Combs, Human Trafficking Team Leader
CrescentCare - Mr. Noel Twilbeck, Jr., CEO
Goldring Institute for International Business - Mr. John Trapani, Associate Dean &
Greater New Orleans Human Trafficking Task Force - Ms. Leanne McCallum, Task Force Coordinator
Eden House - Ms. Susanne Dietzel, Executive Director
Ms. Valarie Hodges, Louisiana State Representative
Louisiana Department of Natural Resources - Mr. Patrick Courreges, Communications
Louisiana Farm Bureau Federation - Mr. Avery J. Davidson, Communications Director
Lower 9th Ward Center for Sustainable Engagement & Development - Arthur J. Johnson, Chief Executive Officer
Ms. Laura Murphy, Professor of Human Rights and Contemporary Slavery
New Orleans Business Alliance - Ms. Lynnette White-Colin, Director, Small Business
Initiatives; Ms. Alejandra Guzman, Vice President, Performance Management & Strategy
New Orleans Cold Storage - Ms. Cristina Lamia, Sales Coordinator; Mr. Matt Lishman,
Warehouse Manager
New Orleans Jazz Museum at the Old U.S. Mint - Mr. Greg Lambousy, Director
New Orleans U.S. Export Assistance Center - Ms. Charlotte Conerly, International Trade Specialist
Office of Inspector General - Mr. Stephen B. Street, Louisiana State Inspector General
Port of New Orleans - Mr. Matt Gresham, Director of External Affairs
Sexual Trauma Awareness & Response - Ms. Amy Jackson, LCSW, MPH, Greater New
Orleans Regional Director
Southern Food & Beverage Museum - Ms. Jennie Merrill, Director of Education
The Historic New Orleans Collection - Mr. Daniel Hammer, President and Chief Executive Officer; Mr. Jason Wiese, Chief Curator
The New Orleans Society for Infectious Disease Awareness (NOSIDA)/WHIV - Dr.
MarkAlain Dery

Thank you to all who welcomed visitors with
home hospitality in January, February, and March 2020
Ms. Tamalayn Dallal and Ms. Nadia Jenkins hosted and provided dinner for two visitors
visiting New Orleans to learn about Combating Trafficking in Persons I.

Mr. Eddie and Malise Dennard hosted and provided dinner for two visitors visiting New
Orleans to learn about Combating Trafficking in Persons I.

Ms. Susanne B. Dietzel, Ph. D. hosted and provided dinner for two visitors visiting New
Orleans to learn about U.S. Trade Policy.

Mr. Scott Pentzer and Ms. Meg Mitchell hosted and provided dinner for two visitors visiting New Orleans to learn about U.S. Trade Policy.

Mr. Tyler Young and Mrs. Milena Young hosted and provided dinner for two visitors visiting New Orleans to learn about U.S. Trade Policy.

Diane Mercer

Robert Gray Freeland Treasurer

Cynthia Dubberley

Tamalyn Dallal

Nancy Maveety

Alexandra Mora

Dr. Alla Rosca
Keith Twitchell

Dr. Pamela Waldron-Moore
Constance Willems

Walter F. Wolf, III

LaToya Cantrell

Patricia Denechaud

Machelle Lee Hall

Edward T. Hayes

Greg Lambousy

Herbert Larson

Jim Letten

Echo Olander

Imran Saeed

Sean Wilson


Susannah Coolidge
 Executive Director

Kelley Ponder
Program Manager

Svetlana Pizzati
Program Officer

Abby Guy,
Mississippi State University

Terry Hendrick
Louisiana State University

Victoria Moore,
Tulane University

New Orleans Citizen Diplomacy Council
 1215 Prytania Street, Suite 203 New Orleans, LA 70130
 504.529.1509 | office@nocdc.org

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