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World Civil Society Assembly - Members


Albanian Forum for the Alliance of Civilisations
Laura Xhaxhiu - Project Manager

Open Doors Center
Laura Xhaxhiu - Project Manager
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Batna University, Lab of Dialogue between Civilizations
Prof.Dr.Abdelmadjid Amrani (Philosopher)

Professor of Philosophy since 1998

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IG Alpbach Armenia
Marine Sargsyan - President

My academic background is in both the Humanities (BA and AM Diplomas in History from the Yerevan State University) and Social Sciences (Public Servant Diploma (equivalent to Master’s Diploma) from the Public Administration Academy of the Republic of Armenia, and a Human Rights non-degree Diploma from the Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, Lund (Sweden).

Youth Action for Change
Anush Hayrapetyan



Vasan Srinivasan, Assistant Director General, Global Dialogue Foundation

  • The first person of Indian origin to be appointed as member of the Australian Multicultural Council.
  • Board of Mental Health Foundation of Australia
  • Former member – Victorian Government International Education Board
  • Former President – Federation of Indian Association of Victoria (FIAV) 2009-2014
  • Former Member (2011-2014) of Victorian Government Ministerial Advisory Ethnic Business Council.
  • Awarded MERETORIOUS SERVICE AWARD for excellence in multicultural affairs, Victorian Government
  • Former chair of Confederation of Indian Australian Association Inc (CIAA)

Global Dialogue Foundation (GDF)
Peter (Pece) GorgievskI

2007 - Present: Chief Executive Coordinator - General

Co-Founder: GDF, Unity in Diversity & Global Shipment.
GDF is a model for the citizen-civil sector in the frame of the UN- to work with all cultures and civilizations; addressing needs, preserving identity, cultural heritage and using dialogue as the instrument for building a peaceful coexistence.
Andrew Cass - Treasurer-General, Global Dialogue Foundation
Administrative Board of Directors
Since graduating in 1983 with a degree in Accounting, Andrew's professional life has encompassed the provision of financial advice to individuals and businesses of varying size.
In 1994, Andrew established the accounting practice Cambel Cass (Melbourne), to continue and expand his involvement in the finance industry through the provision of a quality and timely advice.
Mihajlo (Michael) Najdovski - Director, Global Dialogue Foundation
Administrative Board of Directors
Biotechnology graduate, currently working as a Microbiologist for one of the worlds leading pharmaceutical companies in the plasma industry. With a strong interest in genetics and life extension techniques, Michael will be undertaking further studies in the field of Biomolecular principles. Michael is also a strong believer in well-being and disease prevention through proper eating habits and an active lifestyle. He has commenced his further Biotechnology/ Bio-molecular studies. He is co-founder of GDF/GDI, Global Shipment and Unity in Diversity.

Dr. Ilija Najdovski PhD Nanotechnology - Director, Global Dialogue Foundation
Administrative Board of Directors
A graduate in Nanotechnology with Honours in Chemistry in researching a novel pathogenic sensor; Ilija is currently working as a Validation Officer for one of the worlds leading pharmaceutical companies in the plasma industry. Interested in future technological advancements in the fields of renewable energy and medical devices, Ilija is developing his career within the medical industry with future plans in research & development and he has completed his PhD in Nanotechnology.
 He is co-founder of GDF/GDI, Global Shipment and Unity in Diversity.


Founder - Global Dialogue Foundation
Administrative Board of Directors
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Carolyn Briggs is an elder of the Boon Wurrung people, who are the traditional owners of the country that starts at the Werribee River and extends east, through part of the city of Melbourne and as far east as Wilson's Promontory. 

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Evdoxia Gorgievski, Director - Family, Global Dialogue Foundation

Starting her career in fashion, Evdoxia's experience includes merchandising and retail management.
Since having three children and until this year (2009), Evdoxia has been passionately devoted to full-time motherhood. During this time, she has lived with her family in Asia, traveled frequently and has been upgrading her skills through various personal and business development programs.
Elizabeth Najdovski, Director-Family, Global Dialogue Foundation

Elizabeth graduated from legal college in her native Macedonia, where she was employed as a legal representative by one of the largest international trade holding companies.
At present, Elizabeth has dedicated her time and passion for alternative, i.e. natural medicine, to studying Herbal Pharmacy and is achieving excellent results.
Mark Mayes, Director - Alternative/Natural Medicine / Traditional Chinese Medicine,
Global Dialogue Foundation
Mark is currently practicing Chinese medicine in Williamstown and Melbourne, registered with Chinese medicine registration board and is a Victorian committee member of Australian Acupuncture Chinese Medicine Association. He completed his internship at Shu Guan Hospital Shanghai, China and graduated with a double degree from Victoria University in 2008.

Venerable Lobsang Tendar (Tibetan Buddhist Monk), Director-Religion, Faith & Traditional Faiths, Global Dialogue Foundation

Ven. Lobsang Tendar comes from Kham, Eastern Tibet.  Ordained at Dego Samdupling Monastery at the age of 12, Tendar left for Lhasa shortly after where he joined Gyuto Monastery and trained as a monk for 7 years.  In 1989, he made the journey across the Himalayas to join the Tibetan community in India.  There, he continued his studies at the Gyuto Tantric University in Northern India, specializing in tantric chanting, meditation and butter sculptures and sand mandala. 

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Kevin Meese Director - Religion, Faith & Traditional Faiths
Kevin is an Executive Officer of Catholic Mission Melbourne. 
Catholic Mission works in partnership with local Church communities in the Majority World.  It provides support through spiritual, pastoral care and building programs.
Rabbi Philip Heilbrunn, Director - Religion, Faith & Traditional Faiths
Global Dialogue Foundation
In addition to being the Chief Minister of the St Kilda Hebrew Congregation and past President of the Orthodox Rabbis of Australia and New Zealand, Rabbi Philip Heilbrunn is also a highly gifted cantor and vocal artist of international reputation. He sings and collaborates with some of the world's greatest cantors and choirs on a regular basis.
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Scott Leckie, Director - Climate Change, Global Dialogue Foundation

Director and Founder of Displacement Solutions (, an organisation dedicated to resolving cases of forced displacement throughout the world, in particular displacement caused by climate change and conflict. In 2009 Scott founded Oneness World (, an institution dedicated to developing alternative forms of global governance grounded in global citizenship. He is also Founder of the Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions (COHRE -, an organisation he headed from 1991-2007. He regularly advises several United Nations agencies and has worked on human rights issues in 65 countries.
Fleur Butcher - Director, GDF Sanctuary, Global Dialogue Foundation

Fleur grew up in the hills of Perth surrounded by wildlife. From a very early age, she assisted in the care of many species of wildlife as a carer. Her passion for animals and the environment grew from this beautiful bush setting.

Raquel Tobar - Director, GDF Sanctuary, Global Dialogue Foundation

Commercial Engineer: 6 years experience in mergers and acquisitions at Pricewaterhouse Coopers both in Chile and Australia. Although having a financial background, Raquel's biggest passion is animals! Since arriving in Australia, she is an active member of the Victorian Ferret Society. Raquel participates in shows and events to educate people in caring for their pets and provide a better understanding of ferrets.

Nigel Williamson - Director, GDF Sanctuary, Global Dialogue Foundation

Owner, Nigel's Animal Rescue / Director, Australian Animal Rescue

Nigel began his career as an animal rescue officer with RSPCA in 1985.
Since starting 'Nigel's Animal Rescue' in 1991, Nigel has rescued literally thousands of animals and is widely known among Victorians.

Bill Penrose, Director - Citizens, Organisations & Community
Global Dialogue Foundation

Bill has worked in several local organisations such as festival committees, newspaper groups and community centres and has been a shire councillor for over 10 years at various times since 1991, including one year as mayor of the Shire of Nillumbik in Victoria, Australia. His passion is to improve community understanding of local government activities to allow them greater control of their own environment.


Vincent Chow

Born Malaysia 1955
Migrated to Melbourne in Melbourne 1975
Accountant; Property Developer
Chairperson, Federation of Chinese Association of Victoria
Chairperson, Melbourne Chinatown Chinese New Year Festival Organising Committee
Chairperson, Glen Waverly Chinese New Year & Lantern Festival Organising Committee
President: Chinese Association of Victoria (2002 –2004)


Elleni Bereded

Elleni  was born in Ethiopia. She has focused her life's work on strengthening education, training and employment for culturally and linguistically diverse communities in Australia. From 2005-2011 Elleni served as the first African Commissioner appointed to the Victorian Multicultural Commission. For six years she has also served as Board of Directors of The Women’s Hospital and chaired the Community Advisory Committee and from 2008 -2011, Elleni has served as the inaugural member of Australian Social Inclusion Board. Elleni is a Director of the SBS Board & member of the Community Engagement Committee.  Recently Elleni was appointed to Western Health Board of Directors and chair of Cultural Diversity and Community Advisory Committee.

Colin McKinnon-Dodd

Colin is Mia Mia Gallery’s founder, as well as its principle artist, educator and curator.

Over the past 15 years, Colin has been a founding member of many Indigenous initiatives throughout Australia including the Aboriginal Actors Corporation, Wadamba Bic, One-Fire Dance Troope and the Aboriginal Arts Development Trust. In addition, he initiated a Community Theatre Diploma Course for Indigenous actors and production designers at the Victorian College of the Arts in response to television and theatrical agents request for more trained Indigenous actors.


Ikani Taliai

Ikani migrated to Australia with his family from Tonga in 1980 and finished his secondary schooling in Australia. He went on to complete a Bachelor of Arts. Ikani’s career has included roles in Asset Management, Economic Development and teaching at secondary school level in Tonga. He has also competed professionally for Tonga in athletic events internationally including the 1990 Commonwealth Games.

Bill Kardamitsis JP

Managing Director / CEO at Atlas Import Export and Trading  

Experienced and Successful Business Owner and Operator in a range of Industries in Australia
Profound political career, Member of the "Australian Labour Party"
Candidate for the Federal Electorate Seat of Wills in 1992-1993 with the Australian Labour Party.
Elected Councilor twice in the City of Coburg. Extensive community involvement (founding member of the Coburg Community Health centre; Founder and Coordinator of the St Basil’s Homes for the Aged in Victoria, Australia; Representative Member of the Ethnic Communities Council of Victoria, Australia. 

John Smithies

Director, Cultural Development Network (appointed December 2005)

John is an arts manager with experience working on policy development and a background of arts programming, specifically in cinema, new media arts, and screen education. He studied at the Tasmanian School of Art, the South Australian School of Art, Monash University and the Academy of Fine Art Karlsruhe, Germany. From 1992, John was Director of the State Film Centre of Victoria leading it through its development as the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) and was responsible for opening the new public facilities at Federation Square in Melbourne in October 2002. John left ACMI in 2004 and joined CDN in 2005 as Director.  Since then, he has worked with the CDN Board and a highly skilled team to support stronger arts planning within the cultural development activities of local government.


Supreme Sikh Council of Australia
Harikirat Singh - General Secretary

At the age of 21, working at administrative roles of different organisations, Harkirat Singh started the Sikh Blood Donation Drive with Australian Red Cross and Sikh Food Donation with Food Bank Vic  and travelled all around Australia to get more and more Sikhs to donate blood to serve the humanity and make the Australians aware of the Sikh Identity. With his management and hard work, Sikhs broke the record of most number of Blood donations in one day. He was awarded with a medal by Australian Red Cross Blood Service in 2010 and 2011. He is the Sikh representative in many councils/Govt projects and continuously raises issues related to Sikhs with higher authorities.


Cultural Infusion
Peter Mousaferiadis

Since 1988, Peter has had an extensive career in the arts as a creative director, producer, artistic director, music director, composer and a champion of intercultural understanding. He has established himself as one of Australia’s leading cross cultural directors. Some memorable events include:

  • Producer/Director of the “Australian Christmas Show” in Jinan, China – 21st Dec 2013 
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    Bumblebee Foundation
    Pauline Crosbie

    "To promote enduring, daily intercultural cooperation, that celebrates the diversity and skills of the individual and to broker, consult, design and assist projects that lead to sustainable communities and business in Food Security with cultures of peace, justice and healing for the Earth, its people, its lands and seas and its creatures."
    To educate the new generations in all cultures to respect what has gone before, including the elders of our time and to collaborate, share resources gifts, and skills to support the renewal of consciousness leading to the above statement


    APG Foto - Guruswamy Perumal

    Member:  Delhi Journalist Association, New Delhi, India.
    I am doing Photography from 1961 onwards. My first photo published in 'Health' magazine in Pune, India in the year 1965. I joined Indian Army Postal Service as Warrant Officer in 1972. and retired 1990. In APS also I worked as Photographer in addition my work. In Delhi , I worked two state Governments 1. Tamil Nadu and Kerala as official photographer more than 18 years. In that time I met most of the Indian and foreign leaders and took photos.  I took photos. Nelson Mandela, Bill Gates, Mother Teresa and Indian Presidents, Prime Ministers. Also I took so many Bollywood film stars. I came here in Melbourne 2008.  Here also I am doing photography  for Indian Consulate General . as well most of Indian magazines. FIAV, Housing for the Aged Action Group, NRISA etc.. 1972 onwards I am doing photography with Nikon cameras, lenses flashes.


    Darren John

    Darren has an extensive background in social work and business and has been designing, facilitating and evaluating a vast range of group work practices for over 15 years. After establishing two successful companies in Sydney he spent six years at university studying social work and psychology whilst continuing to work in medical research. He has since integrated his business and social work skills to design, facilitate and evaluate a variety of group work practices.  Darren is dedicated to providing groups for adults and children that incorporate a self help model that encourages people to take ownership in understanding themselves and create their own destiny.


    3ZZZ - Melbourne Ethnic Community Radio
    George Silloum - President

    I was born in Syria and migrated to Australia in 1974 as a young man

    I have studied Aeronautical engineering in Melbourne and worked in that field till about 1985 and after that I have completed various studies in building and architectural studies and started my business in designing  and building various construction projects the business still operating till now.

    Married with 2 children’s boys both university graduates.

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    Finnish Society of Melbourne
    Anneli Huttunen-Rickards


    • 1985- 1992 Participated in various Textile Crafts Workshops by leading Australian and overseas craft persons.
    • 1980-1982   Certificate of Handloom weaving, Melbourne College of Textiles
    • 1960-1961   Finland’s Travel Bureau-ticketing and sales
    • Until 1958    Kallion Yhteiskoulu ( high school) Helsinki, Finland
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    United Macedonian Diaspora
    Ordan Andreevski - Director of Australian Outreach

    Individual member
    Abhay Awasthi

    Individual member
    Amit Menghani

    Hindu Foundation Australia
    Panditji Abhay Awasthi - President


    SWEP P/L Analytical Laboratories
    E.H. (Ted) Mikhail - Managing Director

    Individual member
    Mr. Mantelli J.P.

    Somali Australian Council of Victoria Inc.
    Dr. Hussein Haraco - President

    Diversity Council Australia

    Sovereign Weddings & Events
    Nicholas Damilatis

    Macedonian Community Welfare Association
    Diana Sterjovska - Manager

    Young African Connection
    John James - CEO

    Macedonian Community Council of Victoria

    Sangam Community Association
    Gurpreet Singh Tuteja - President

    Individual member
    Clare Reddan

    Islamic Council of Victoria

    Aboriginal Artists Development Fund / Mia Mia Gallery
    Peter Barlow

    Australian Somali Welfare Botherhood Association Inc
    Mohamed Ibrahim - Secretary

    Hararian Community Association
    Abdulhakim Adus - Chairperson

    Horn of African Communities Network
    Terefe Aborete - Services Director

    Australian Education and Leadership Centre
    Michelle Jenkins

    Individual member
    Claire Millar

    Muslim Women Council of Victoria Inc
    Rabia Syed - Project Officer

    Australia India Society of Victoria
    Dr. Gurdip Aurora

    Lao Australian Society
    Mixay Chittaphong - President

    Increasing Returns
    John C. H. Perry

    Australian Armenian Welfare Society
    Mrs Shnoz Bal - President

    Louise Hartmann

    Church of All Nations
    Rev. Dr. John Evans


    Loddon Campaspe Multicultural Services



    Gringi Obura - Treasurer


    Torque Arts
    Sue Clark - Director



    INTLI, International Leadership Institute
    Iliana Schmatelka, MBA

    2012 - Present: Founder & Managing Director
    Strategic consulting, Business Coaching, Interim and change management, Training and workshops

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    EDUCULT - Michael Wimmer, PhD.
    2003 - present: Director of EDUCULT, Head of Scientific Research
    Priorities: Cultural Policy, Cultural Development, Education Policy, Arts and Cultural Education and Cultural Participation

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    Great Silk Way
    Aydan Karimli
    2012 - Present: Acting Secretary-General
    2011 - Present: MP Fuad Muradov Position: Assistant
    The “Great Silk Way” International Youth Union was established for the purpose of coordination of activities of youth organizations, as well as representing and protecting common interests of the countries historically located on the silk route. The main objective and scope of activities of the organization is intercultural and interreligious dialogue, globalization issues.


    Gender Project for Bulgarian Foundation
    Stanimira Hadjimitova

    Position: Director 

    Gender Project for Bulgaria Foundation (GPF) was set up in 1995 as NGO in public benefit. There are 2 people working full time and 4 people part time. GPF is an advocacy group for promotion of gender equality in all spheres of the private and social life in Bulgaria, Europe and globally. 

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    Global Initiative on Psychiatry - Sofia
    Valentina Hristakeva - Executive Director


    Balkan Agency for Sustainable Development - BASD
    Anna Lalkovska - Chairperson


    Vital Actions for Sustainable Development
    Jean Paul Brice Affana

    2008 - Present: Coordinator
    Youth and Action Instructor trained by the Ministry of Youth Affairs of Cameroon. His fields of interest and experiences include social development, climate change, sustainable development, intercultural dialogue, peace-building, youth empowerment and development, and human rights.
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    AGE: 36


    Fanji Self Help Womens Group
    Mbingno Fekeme



    Horn Dialogue Foundation
    Mohamed Adan

    I am highly motivated with graduate Degree of International Relations from Addis Ababa University and enthusiastic worker with 10 years’ experience in Local and International NGOs. I also have two Diplomas of Information Technology and Human Resources Management, as well I earned online Certificates from Geneva University at International Organization Management in 2013, and The Changing Global Order from Leiden University 2014.

    I am performing individual with demonstrating drive, enthusiasm and initiative, with the ability to work well under pressure, consistently delivering quickly and accurately and able to prioritise to ensure deadlines are met whilst maintaining a high standard of analysis and insight.

    I am Co-Founder of Horn Dialogue Foundation [HDF] which is a collaborative, participatory non political, impartial, non-governmental and not for profit Foundation, Which has Difference offices that Registered Different Countries such as Denmark, Sweden, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Turkey, Kenya, Ethiopia, Sudan and Somalia, The branches and offices of Horn Dialogue Foundation in Somalia are located in the capital of Somalia, Mogadishu and in Hargeisa and Bosaaso.
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