​​​​​​​2021-2022 Speaker Series
The Denver Council on Foreign Relations is actively scheduling another wonderful year of guest speakers.
Please check back regularly for updates!

The Importance of a U.S. Brazil Partnership
with Amb. Todd Chapman

Todd C. Chapman is the former U.S. Ambassador to Brazil.  He is a career member of the Foreign Service, Class of Minister- Counselor, served as Ambassador to the Republic of Ecuador from 2016- 2019. Ambassador Chapman previously served as Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Political Military Affairs at the Department of State (2014-2016); Deputy Chief of Mission, U.S. Embassy Brasilia, Brazil; Senior Deputy Coordinator for Economic Affairs, U.S. Embasy Kabul, Afghanistan; and Chargé d'Affaaires and Deputy Chief of Mission at U.S. Embassy Maputo, Mozambique. Earlier in his career, he served as Executive Assistant, Bureau of Wesstern Hemisphere Affairs, Political/ Economic/ Commercial Counselor, U.S. Embassy La Paz, Bolivia, and Economic Officer, U.S. Embassy San Jose, Costa Rica. He also served as Telecommunications Officer, Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs, Economic/Commercial Officer, U.S. Embassy Office in Abuja, Nigeria, and Kenya/Uganda Desk Officer, Office of East African Affairs. 

His first Foreign Service assignments were in the Operations Center and in Mozambique and Taiwan.  Before joiningthe Foreign Service, he worked as a Consultant in Brazil and Houston, Texas, and as a Commercial Banker in New York and Saudi Arabia. Ambassador Chapman earned an A.B. from Duke University in 1983, and a M.S. from the Joint Military Intelligence College in 2000.  He has won numerous Department performance awards.  He speaks Portuguese, Spanish, and Chinese.
Topic: TBD
with Bruce Valentine

Former Associate Deputy Director of the CIA for Operations (ADDO) Mr. Bruce Valentine was previously a Field Artillery Officer in the United States Army, Valentine joined the CIA in 1994. During the early stage of his career, he held overseas assignments in Central Asia, the Caucuses, and the Balkans.  Following September 11, 2001, Valentine served in senior, front-office leadership assignments in a war zone station during two separate assignments.  Later, he was Chief of Station in two Balkan locations; in one African location; and in one hostile, denied area. Valentine also served as operational tradecraft instructor and, within CIA Headquarters, directed operational activities at the regional-, hemispheric-, and global-levels.  His last position within the Directorate of Operations was as the Associate Deputy Director of the CIA for Operations (ADDO). He is a graduate of Iowa State University with a bachelor’s degree in political science, a graduate of Georgetown University with a master’s degree in international affairs, and a certificate holder from the Harvard Business School Advanced Management Program.
Topic TBD
with Ambassador Onkokame Kitso Mokaila
His Excellency Onkokame Kitso Mokaila assumed his position as the Botswana Ambassador to the United States of American on 25th August 2020. He brings with him a unique combination of knowledge and experience in politics, public policy, regulations, governance, training, commerce, mechanical engineering and national security.

Prior to his appointment, Ambassador Mokaila was a Unisystems company owner and corporate manager. Eearly in his career, he led several global and multinational companies doing buisness in Botswana and overseas, including serving as Managing Director of Unisys Botswana Pty. Ltd (IT Company), Managing Director of International Computers Limited (ICL), and General Manager of Hyundai Motor Distributors, respectively.

As a member of Parliment from 2004 to 2019, Ambassador Mokaila held a wide range of Cbinet portfolios. During his political and parliamentary career, he served as Minister of Environment Natural Resources Conservation and Tourism: Minister of Transport and Communications; as well as Minister of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources.
He is a graduate of the College of Military Engineering - India Pune and Military College of Electronics and MEchanical Engineering (and affiliate of Osmania University) - India Secunderabad; the Swaziland College of Technology; and Maru-A-Pula School in Gaborone. He speaks English, Setswana and Hindi. He is married and has three (3) children.
Subnational Diplomacy in a Changing World
with Dr. Jerrold D. Green
Dr. Jerrold D. Green is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Pacific Council on International Policy in Los Angeles. He is also a Research Professor of Communications at the University of Southern California. Prior to this he served as a Partner at Best Associates in Dallas, Texas, a privately held merchant banking firm with global operations. He also served as the Director of International Programs and Development at the RAND Corporation where he oversaw the activities of the Center for Asia-Pacific Policy as well as the Center for Russia and Eurasia. At the same time he directed RAND’s Center for Middle East Public Policy. Green has a B.A. (summa cum laude) from the University of Massachusetts/Boston, as well as an M.A. and Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Chicago. His academic career began at the University of Michigan where he was a professor in the Department of Political Science and the Center for Near Eastern and North African Studies.  He subsequently joined the University of Arizona where he became a Professor of Political Science and Sociology as well as Director of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies.
Dr. Green has written widely on Middle East themes focusing on American Middle East policy, the role of religion in the region, inter-Arab relations, Iranian politics, and the Arab-Israeli conflict. His work has appeared in such publications as World Politics, Comparative Politics, Ethics and International Affairs, Survival, Middle East Insight, Politique Etrangere, The World Today, The RAND Review, The Harvard Journal of World Affairs, The Iranian Journal of International Relations, and The Huffington Post.
Topic: TBD
with Valerie Plame
A former career covert CIA operations officer, Valerie Plame worked to protect America's national security and prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, in particular, nuclear weapons. During her career with the CIA, Valerie managed top-secret covert programs designed to keep terrorists and rogue nation states from acquiring nuclear weapons. This involved decision-making at senior levels, recruiting foreign assets, deploying resources around the world, managing multi-million dollar budgets, briefing US policy-makers, and demonstrating consistently solid judgement in a field where mistakes could prove disastrous. She was also involved in covert cyber operations and counterterrorism efforts.

Valerie is an advisor to Starling Trust. She has served on the nonprofit boards of The Ploughshares Fund, Global Zero, the United Way of Santa Fe County, Penn State School of International Affairs, Postpartum Support International. Valerie is affiliated with the Santa Fe Institute, a trans-disciplinary scientific think tank created by two Nobel Prize winners to address the most compelling and complex problems in the world today.

Valerie has done extensive public speaking throughout the country and internationally on cyber secutiry issues, national security, nuclear proliferation, women in intelligence, and the NSA revalations. She has written for many national publications including Time, Newsweek, CNN, The Daily Beast, and The Huffington Post.
Valerie is an author of The New York Times best-selling memoir Fair Game: My Life as a Spy, My Betrayal by the White House, which was released as a major motion picture of the same name starring Sean Penn and Naomi Watts. Along with Sarah Lovett, she published the well-received fictional spy thrillers Blowback and Burned.

In 2020, Valerie ran for Congress to represent New Mexico's Third Congressional District. She is married to Joe Shepard, President of Western New Mexico University and is the proud mother of college-aged twins.