Valon Xharra is a Senior Vice President for the global risk management firm Gavin de Becker & Associates. Based in Los Angeles, Valon provides specialized crisis management consultation for Fortune 500 companies and advises them on how to manage political and operational risks. Valon is passionate about entrepreneurship and is an investor and partner in several successful businesses spanning technology, real estate, fashion retail and luxury events management. Valon served four years as a diplomatic analyst for the U.S. Department of State during the war in Kosovo, where he provided expertise in negotiations between the U.S. Government and the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA). Valon earned a Master’s degree in International Affairs from Columbia University and a MBA from Boston University. He is a Fellow at the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation and the Paciﬁc Council on International Policy. He is an avid competitive runner and a passionate backer of women’s and children’s rights.
Ilir Hoxha MD is a Specialist in Public Health. He holds a Master of Science in Health Systems Management awarded by London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and PhD in Public Health awarded by University of Bern. He is Fulbright Fellowship recipient for research work at The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice, New Hampshire, United States. Since 2002, Ilir is involved in advisory and research work that support health policy processes in Kosovo and beyond. In 2006, he established DI Consulting, which specializes in provision advisory services and solutions in health care. As of 2011, he serves as Project Adviser, for Solidar Suisse, in a long-term project that facilitates participation of civil society actors in policy processes related national health reform in Kosovo. Between years 2010 to 2014 he has served as external adviser, in matters related to implementation of health insurance reform, for Ministers of Health of Republic of Kosovo, Dr. Bujar Bukoshi, and Dr. Ferid Agani. Ilir is Assistant Professor, at Department of Community and Family Medicine, Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth, and Professor, at Department of Health Management of Heimerer College in Prishtina. In addition, he has served as board member for American University in Kosovo, Centre for Research, Documentation and Publication, Institute for Advanced Studies GAP, Balkan Investigative and Reporting Network and Prishtina Institute for Political Studies. Currently he serves as board member for Foundation Kosovo Luxembourg and TOKA.
Dr. George Little is Professor of Pediatrics and of Obstetrics & Gynecology at the Dartmouth Medical School and the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in the United States where he is neonatologist. He served for over a decade as Professor and Chairman of the Department of Maternal and Child Health at Dartmouth before it became separate departments of Pediatrics and Ob/Gyn. In addition to clinical research, his interests have focused on perinatal health policy, systems development and regionalization, outcomes, reproductive and perinatal ethics, the family in the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) and international health. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and an Honorary Fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). In addition to the AAP and ACOG he has been actively involved and served in leadership and consultative positions with a large number of organizations including NACHRI ( National Association of Children’s Hospitals and Related Institutions), NPIC ( National Perinatal Information Center), AHA ( American Hospital Association ) and the MOD ( March of Dimes) as well as federal and state governmental agencies . He is a producer of Dreams and Dilemmas, an award winning cinema verite film focused on parental involvement in clinical decision making as well as other films. He is the author of numerous peer-reviewed publications, monographs and chapters. At the present time he is a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics Helping Babies Breathe (HBB) planning committee having been a founding HBB Co-Director and is a liaison to the Survive and Thrive GDA. He is also presently involved in improving pregnancy outcomes in Kosovo where he has served as an advisor to the Ministry of Health. He has served with a US Agency for International Development (USAID) Child Survival Project in Egypt and as a consultant to the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at the United Arab Emirates University in Abu Dhabi. Early in his career he served as a Peace Corps staff physician in Nigeria and Malawi and then as the Regional Medical Officer for Sub-Saharan Africa.
Ilirjana Bajraktari has extensive experience in health systems and policy development with health organizations at international level. Currently she is Director of Operations with American Hospital in Kosova where she leads range of projects and activities for optimization of processes within the AHK. As Chair of Committee on Health with American Chamber of Commerce in Kosova, she is responsible for establishing and strengthening collaboration between private sector and governmental institutions in health sector aiming to improve current and develop new trends for sustainable development of health sector as well as improvement of citizen’s well-being. A graduate from Dartmouth College and Tuck School of Business (USA), Ilirjana holds and MD/PhD degree from Medical University of Graz (Austria). She worked for several years with World Health Organization in the field of health systems and policy in limited resource settings. For more she was engaged with the range of organizations such as UNICEF, AIHA, World Bank for promoting health, quality of care and health as a human right activities. Her research is focused on maternal and child health, quality of care and medical decision making. Additionally she collaborated with IPPNW for promoting medical peace work and student’s exchange programs for the Western Balkans, as well as other civil society organizations for environmental health, corporate social responsibility and partnership building across sectors issues. Ilirjana is passionate about strategies and concepts for improving health sector particularly for the benefits of mothers and children for achieving sustainable development of the societies.
Drin Kukaj graduated from Pace University and he went on to pursue his career in Financial Services. Drin is a managing partner at Premier Consulting Partners where he provides consultation services on financial planning, wealth management, and employee benefits. His volunteer work for charitable organizations includes being an active member of Habitat for Humanity in Westchester, which helps raise money and build homes for Veterans, and an active donor of The Wounded Warriors Project.