2014 Bonn Participative Journalism - Strategy Thought Partners

Beatriz Azeredo

Beatriz azeredo.jpg


Dr. Beatriz Azeredo has a PhD in Economics from the Economics Institute of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ). She is Director of Social Responsibility and Public Relations for TV Globo as well as a professor of the Institute of Economics at UFRJ. Previous positions include Director of the Institute of Applied Economic Research, Director of Social Development and Urban Infrastructure and Planning of the Brazilian Development Bank, and Director of the Center for the Study of Public Policy. She is a published author, a leading partner of Avina and Senior Fellow of the Synergos.



Dan Austin

dan austin

Dan Austin is a veteran news-media executive with private, public and non-profit media-management experience in both U.S. and foreign markets. He currently chairs the Global Press Institute, a non-profit organization that trains women in the developing world as journalists and syndicates their work. From 2006 to 2011, he served as Director of the Voice of America, the U.S. government’s civilian international broadcasting arm with a global audience of 123 million, reached through 1,400 hours weekly of original radio, television and web-based programming in 43 languages. Previously, he was chairman and chief executive officer of the community-news publishing arm of Dow Jones & Co. and, earlier, was vice president and general manager of the Dow Jones flagship, The Wall Street Journal. Following Army service in the Vietnam war, Dan began his professional career as a staff reporter in The Wall Street Journal’s Dallas, Texas bureau and subsequently worked in a number of reporting, editing and news management positions at the Journal before moving to the paper’s business side. A native of Kansas with a B.S. in journalism from the University of Kansas, Dan and his wife, Gail, an international technology consultant, live in Short Hills, NJ.


Eric Chinje

eric chinje

Eric Chinje is currently a Visiting Scholar at the George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, and an Adviser to the governments of Liberia and South Sudan on their strategic, development and international communications. He is a Senior Advisor at the Washington-based International Communications and Trade-relations firm, KRL International and came to KRL after a stint as Director of Strategic Communications at the London-based Mo Ibrahim Foundation. Prior to that he led the Global Media Development Program at the World Bank Institute (WBI) and, in that capacity, launched the IMAGE (Independent Media for Accountability, Governance and Empowerment) e-learning program and network to build media capacity to report on and analyze global development issues. Mr. Chinje moved to the WBI from his position as External Affairs and Communications Manager in the World Bank’s Africa Region and the institution's spokesperson on Africa. He initiated and ran a series of workshops on Economics and Business Reporting, Investigative Journalism, Budget Coverage, and Reporting on Agriculture, involving over 2000 journalists in Africa and Asia. He spent four years at the African Development Bank in Tunis as head of that institution’s External Affairs and Communications Unit.


Ferhan Cook


Ferhan Cook is the co-founder of London-based m-Spark.org, a newly created virtual start-up accelerator and advisory, designed to help social entrepreneurs in strategic business modeling, investor pitching and partnership/investor matching. m-spark.org focuses especially on mobile and internet powered social impact projects, across the world as well as in Turkey. Cook is also a founding member of Galata Business Angels, Turkey’s first angel network, for the past 3 years. Cook is interested helping building bridges between regular investors and impact investors, and to help grow this emerging social impact ecosystems in developing regions.With over 25 years of experience of international deal-making and marketing, 11 of which in digital media and international product marketing and business development at Apple in California and Paris, Ferhan Cook, is helping entrepreneurs in international access and investor access in Turkey or other international markets. During 10 years from 2000 and 2010, Cook has created and executive produced digital media conferences of MIPTV and MIPCOM TV markets in Cannes, France, in addition to digital strategy and business development consulting. She served on various international juries such as the International Interactive Emmys, Korean GMCA awards, the MIPCOM Mobile TV Awards and the Content 360 Cross Media Festival at MIPCOM and MIPTV where she evaluated thousands of creative digital content and mobile apps.


Graham Griffith

Graham Griffith

Graham Griffith is a media strategist and career public radio producer with a track record of creating programming that responds to the changing media landscape. From launching Rhode Island’s first public radio program in 2000, to creating the award-winning, national talk show On Point after the 9-11 attacks, and launching The Takeaway with WNYC-New York Public Radio, Public Radio International, The BBC World Service, The New York Times, and WGBH Radio and Television, Graham has developed a unique perspective on the radio medium specifically, and broadcast journalism in general. He now works with independent media organizations including the International Committee of Investigative Journalists, On Being, and Futuro Media, on new media initiatives and in building stronger journalistic practices. His efforts are focused on capacity-building and user-centered design within organizations that recognize the importance of quality, independent media to building stronger civic society.



Gregor Hackmack


Gregor Hackmack is co-founder of ParliamentWatch.org, an independent platform which gives German citizens the possibility to ask public questions and receive public answers from their members of parliament over the Internet. More than 90 percent of all members of parliament participate in this online dialogue. Storing more than 160.000 citizen questions and more than 140.000 answers, it is the biggest voters' memory in the world. In addition ParliamentWatch.org displays the voting behaviour of MPs as well as their outside earnings.The platform has been successfully exported to Luxembourg, Austria, Ireland, France, Greece and Tunisia. In 2008, Gregor Hackmack received the Ashoka Fellowship for social entrepreneurship. He was appointed Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in 2010 and received the „Democracy Award“ from the National Democratic Institute in 2013. He is one of the three initiators of a successful referendum campaign for a more direct electoral law as well as a transparency law in his home state Hamburg. Gregor is an elected member of the plenary of Hamburg`s chamber of commerce. In April 2014 he published his first book on how to restore trust in politics.


Helena Lersch

helena lersch


Helena Lersch studied Economics and Politics in Maastricht, Hong Kong and London with a focus on international trade. Prior to Google, she gained experience in European politics as well as in business strategy. At Google she is part of the policy Team located in Berlin. Her area of expertise is copyright in the age of digitization, creative industries and new business models in the TV/Music and Publishing industry.



Jane McElhone

jane mcelhone


A journalist, trainer and media development specialist, for the past eight years Jane McElhone has been working with the Open Society Foundations' International Media Program, supporting media and media development in a wide variety of countries around the world. Prior to joining OSF Jane worked in Afghanistan, Timor Leste, Indonesia, Cambodia and Thailand and, for many years, as a producer, journalist and trainer for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Jane is currently leading OSF's media work in Burma/Myanmar. She also recently completed a Master’s of Science in Migration, Mobility and Development at the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London.


Jean Garner

jane garner


Jean Garner is a Senior Producer overseeing Acquisitions and Commissions for Al Jazeera English (AJE) programs in the Americas, primarily for Witness, the channel’s flagship documentary program. She works closely with independent filmmakers across the region to develop story ideas that will resonate with the channel’s global mission, giving voice to the voiceless. She has also developed the channel’s new talent outreach project, Viewfinder. Ms. Garner also spent several years working media development, education and training in Eastern and Central Europe.



Jerry Timmins

jerry timmins


Jerry Timmins is Director of GMT Media Ltd, a consultancy working with partners in Europe, Middle East and Africa to establish and reform broadcast media. He worked for the BBC for 30 years in Radio and TV, both as journalist, producer and senior executive. As Head of Americas, and Head of Africa and Middle East, Jerry was on the Board of BBC World Service for 16 years. He worked with the Director General, leading a major pan BBC change project, and launched a wide range of new productions and channels - including BBC Arabic TV and the BBC’s only international news co-production: The World which is a major drive-time radio news programme in the USA. He now specialises in media policy, advising governments who want to develop or review their regulatory systems. He also advises on the launch and renewal of TV and Radio channels.


Ken Banks

ken banks

Ken Banks, Founder of kiwanja.net and FrontlineSMS, devotes himself to the application of mobile technology for positive social and environmental change around the world. He has worked at the intersection of technology, anthropology, conservation and development for the past twenty years and, during that time, has lived and worked across the African continent. He is a PopTech Fellow, a Tech Awards Laureate, an Ashoka Fellow and a National Geographic Emerging Explorer, and has been internationally recognised for his work. Ken is an experienced conference speaker and also a published author, with his first edited book, "The Rise of the Reluctant Innovator", released in late 2013. His latest project, Means of Exchange, looks at how everyday technologies can be used to democratise opportunities for economic self-­‐sufficiency, rebuild local community and promote a return to local resource use.



Leon Willems

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Leon Willems is Director of Free Press Unlimited. They work on journalism initiatives and media development projects in over forty fragile and repressive countries. Signature projects include Radio Zamaneh, StoryMaker, Kids News Network and the Internet Protection Lab. He is the founder of the Radio Dabanga project in partnership with journalists, emergency relief organisations, (media) development organisations and peace groups. That station is currently run by Free Press Unlimited and caters for two million daily listeners in Sudan through radio and satellite TV. Before joining Press Now, Willems worked for the United Nations Mission in Sudan for a three-year term, setting up independent radio station Miraya FM in Southern Sudan. He also served in a variety of leadership positions at the Dutch public TV broadcaster IKON.  Leon Willems is chairman of the steering committee for the Global Forum for Media Development since 2012.



Lucia Araújo

lucia araujo


Lucia Araújo is a journalist and the General Manager Futura Channel, Fundacao Roberto Marinho. She started her career as a writer and managing editor for news and feature programs at Abril Video, TV Globo and TV Cultura. During two years she lived in Washington DC where she worked as a free lancer reporter for Brazilian newspaper Folha de São Paulo, covering the cultural, behavior and business areas. Back to Brazil, Lucia joined independent companies in the development of documentary series for different free and payTV channels. Until 1999, when she took over the position of General Manager at Canal Futura, she worked for CNBC in Brazil and for TV Bandeirantes as head of news and journalistic programs.


Patrice Schneider

patrice Schneider

A press freedom enthusiast, Patrice started his publishing career as a journalist reporting from conflicts in Central Asia at the end of the 1980s. Before being involved in impact investment in quality journalism with the Media Development Investment Fund, he held the responsibilities of Managing Director of Netscape Europe, a Principal for the World Economic Forum (The Davos Annual Meeting) and Deputy Managing Director at Lagardère Active – the leading French publishing group and owner of ELLE, PREMIERE and other internationally renowned magazines. Schneider has also worked as a Director at the World Association of Newspapers in Paris. Since 1996, MDIF - a three consecutive years winner of the ImpactAssets 50 awards - has invested more than $125m in 91 independent news businesses in 31 countries and has returned US$ 18.2m to investors. For Patrice, the impact investment in quality information is THE cornerstone of any open and dynamic democracy.



Patrick Leusch

patrick Leusch

Patrick Leusch is currently Head International Cooperation of DW Akademie, a world-leading media development organization. Patrick is responsible for the organizations advocacy activities, for international networking and fundraising. His team develops strategic media projects with international consortia and partnerships in developing, fragile or transformation countries worldwide. Patrick represents the organization in a range of partnerships with international agencies, networks and towards political bodies, such as the European Commission or UN. Patrick is an active member of the German Forum for Media Development, FoME and Secretary General and Member of the Steering Committee of the Global Forum for Media Development, GFMD, the global network of media development organizations. Patrick participates regularly as a speaker or moderator in international conferences and for a and he has published a range of articles in the field of media development and international cooperation.



Sasa Vucinic

sasa vucinic

Sasa Vucinic is the founder and CEO of IndieVoices. Before launching this venture, Sasa served for sixteen years as CEO of the Media Development Loan Fund (MDLF), an organization he founded in 1995. Long before the phrase “impact investing” was coined, MDLF was envisioned and established as a mission-driven lending and investment fund that provided low-cost financing to independent news media in developing countries. During Sasa’s tenure, MDLF provided over US$100 million in different forms of financing to highly respected news providers in twenty-five developing countries. During Sasa’s tenure, MDLF become financially self-sustaining, deploying its mission-motivated equity investments to “earn” an endowment of over US$20 million for the organization. Prior to becoming a banker for independent media, Sasa was a journalist and editor in Belgrade, Serbia (at that time Yugoslavia), serving as editor-in-chief of the political weekly NON and general manager and editor-in-chief of Radio B-92, the leading independent electronic media company in the country.