10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Raynor Memorial Libraries, Beaumier Suites (lower level)
H.E. Pjer Šimunović
Ambassador of the Republic of Croatia to the United States of America
Pjer Šimunović is Croatia’s Ambassador to the United States since September 2017. Before assuming his Ambassadorship, together with a career in international affairs journalism and academic research he served in various high-level positions in the Croatian Government, in the fields of national security, defense and diplomacy.
H.E. Jonatan Vseviov
Ambassador of Estonia to the United States
Jonatan Vseviov serves as Estonia´s Ambassador to the United States since August 2018. This is his third diplomatic posting in Washington, DC.
Dr. Andrea Kendall-Taylor
Senior Fellow and Director, Transatlantic Security Program, CNAS
Andrea Kendall-Taylor is a Senior Fellow and Director of the Transatlantic Security Program at the Center for a New American Security.
Adjunct Senior Fellow, Transatlantic Security Program, CNAS
James Joye Townsend Jr. is an adjunct senior fellow in the CNAS Transatlantic Security Program.
After eight years as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (DASD) for European and NATO Policy, Jim Townsend completed more than two decades of work on European and NATO policy in the Pentagon, at NATO and at the Atlantic Council.
For our sixth stop as part of the “Across the Pond, In the Field” trip, CNAS traveled to the balmy Midwest in the dead of winter. On February 4-6, 2019, the team headed out to Madison and Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and with us we brought His Excellency Jonatan Vseviov, Ambassador of Estonia to the United States; and Pjer Šimonović, Ambassador of Croatia to the United States.
CNAS took part in two public events in both Madison and Milwaukee. The first event was hosted by the Madison Committee on Foreign Relations on the evening of February 4th. This event featured a panel discussion with the Ambassadors, an audience Q&A, and a chance to meet and mingle with the panelists over happy hour before the event. CNAS also invited students from the University of Wisconsin-Madison to the event so that we could get a next generation view point on the current issues facing the US-European relationship. The questions discussed covered a broad swath of issues including how Russian disinformation affects Estonia and Croatia, the future of NATO enlargement, how European foreign policy is affected by the Trump Administration, and to what degree Russia has a network of alliances to stand alongside in times of crises. Marquette University hosted the second panel discussion, graciously moderated by Dr. Risa Brooks. The questions followed a similar theme as the ones in Madison, with more focus placed on the effect of Brexit on the European Union, and the future of the INF Treaty.
CNAS took part in a number of one-on-one meetings in Milwaukee. The team started off with an early morning breakfast with the Lieutenant Governor of Wisconsin, Mandela Barnes. We discussed clean energy, refugee issues, as well as the ongoing saga with the Taiwanese tech giant, Foxconn. Afterward, we went to the Bradley Foundation to meet with their president, Ambassador Richard Graber (who served as US Ambassador to the Czech Republic from 2006-2009.) The team discussed how to navigate differences between the US and Europe while still keeping in the Transatlantic relationship intact. With the Mayor of Milwaukee, Tom Barrett, we discussed local issues and the fact that opinions sharply diverge the further away from the city one travels. The Mayor talked about the city’s bid for the Democratic National Convention in 2020, which they won! Finally, the team met with a group of community leaders organized by Griselda Aldrete, President and CEO of the Hispanic Professionals of Greater Milwaukee, to discuss trade, immigration, and how to translate foreign policy issues into easy-to-access messages for local populations around the United States. For the last stop of the day, Jim Townsend and Andrea Kendall-Taylor took part in a 30-minute interview with Douglas Savage, the Assistant Director for the Institute of World Affairs at UWM, on the TV show International Focus.
This was an immensely successful trip, and we’re looking forward to Kansas City, Missouri in April!