Former State Dept. official Farah Pandith writing book on how to defeat violent extremists

Pandith joins CFR.

By The American Bazaar Staff

Farah Pandith (Courtesy of Twitter)
Farah Pandith (Courtesy of Twitter)

NEW YORK: Farah Pandith, who served as the State Department’s first-ever special representative to Muslim communities, has joined the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) as an adjunct senior fellow and will focus on ways to counter violent extremism.

Pandith has held a number of senior positions in the public and private sectors, including political appointments in the George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush, and Barack H. Obama administrations, according to a release by the CFR.

Pandith was the senior advisor to the assistant secretary of state for Europe and Eurasian affairs from 2007 to 2009, the director of Middle East regional initiatives at the National Security Council from 2004 to 2007, and the chief of staff of the Bureau of Asia and the Near East at the U.S. Agency for International Development from 2003 to 2004.

While serving as special representative, Pandith traveled to more than 80 countries where she focused on youth. Over the last decade she pioneered approaches, initiatives, and networks to counter violent extremism. She is also a main architect of the Women in Public Service Project.

In January 2013 she was awarded the Secretary’s Distinguished Honor Award for “exceptionally outstanding service to the agencies of the US Government resulting in achievements of marked national or international significance.” She was vice president of international business for ML Strategies, LLC prior to joining the George W. Bush administration.

Pandith has been affiliated with Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government since she left government in January 2014. She is part of the leadership team of the Counter Extremism Project and a strategic advisor at the Risk Assistance Network and Exchange. She is writing a book on Muslim millennials and how to catalyze a global effort to defeat extremists.

Pandith became a life member of CFR in 2011. She holds an AB in Government and Psychology from Smith College and an MA in Law and Diplomacy from The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University.

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