Laura Bush, Former First Lady of the United States
Onaba Payab, 2014 Valedictorian and Graduate, The American University of Afghanistan
Dr. Sakena Yacoobi, CEO, Afghan Institute of Learning
Moderated by Susan Glasser, Editor, POLITICO
One of the most beloved and admired American First Ladies, for decades Laura Bush has championed key issues in the fields of education, health care, and human rights. She has traveled to more than seventy-six countries, including two historic solo trips to Afghanistan, and has launched groundbreaking education and healthcare programs in the U.S. and abroad. The author of the bestselling memoir, Spoken From The Heart, Mrs. Bush also founded both the Texas Book Festival and the National Book Festival in Washington D.C.
Susan Glasser is the Editor of POLITICO. She was also the founding editor of POLITICO Magazine, the award-winning publication featuring both long-form reporting and opinion journalism. Launched in November 2013, the magazine publishes daily online and bimonthly in print, with a unique blend of hard-hitting reporting and original insight and analysis — from first-person essays, like “Confessions of a Former TSA Agent” that became POLITICO’s most-read article ever, to deeply reported narratives, like its launch cover story, “Locked in the Cabinet,” by Glenn Thrush.
Onaba Payab is the Communication Officer and 2014 valedictorian of The American University of Afghanistan, a university which had only one female student just 10 years ago. Her work is focused on bringing positive change to the lives of Afghan women.
Dr. Sakena Yacoobi
Dr. Sakena Yacoobi is the CEO of the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL), which she founded in 1995 in response to the lack of education and healthcare that the Afghan people were facing after decades of war and strife. Since its founding, AIL has either directly or indirectly impacted the lives of more than 12 million people. Under her leadership, AIL continues as an innovative organization working at the grassroots level helping communities and individuals.