On October 16, 2014, the Ukrainian Ambassador to the United States, His Excellency Olexander Motsyk, addressed a reception at the German Marshall Fund in Washington, D.C. on the topic of “The Volatility of Borders in the Twenty-First Century.” Ivan Vejvoda, GMF’s senior vice president of programs, welcomed attendees, which included the Fall 2014 cohort of European and American Marshall Memorial Fellows (MMF) as well as alumni and supporters of the program. GMF has a long history of supporting democracy-building in Eastern Europe, noted Vejvoda. The Balkan Trust for Democracy, the Belarus Trust, and the Black Sea Trust have supported capacity-building and strengthened civil society institutions across the region. The MMF program is also proud to have selected its first Ukrainian and Moldovan fellows in the last two years, and looks forward to increasing its support of next generation leadership development throughout the region.
His Excellency Ambassador Motsyk gave the fellows an exclusive, off-the-record briefing about Ukraine’s current border security and relations with Russia. The MMF fellows asked the ambassador about ways in which citizens of the U.S. and Europe might remain connected to and support Ukrainians, and the group pursued a productive conversation about maintaining strong relationships between Ukraine and other nations.
The reception marked the high point of a week of Washington programming for European marshall memorial fellows. From here they venture for three weeks of leadership development to cities such as Detroit, MI, Pittsburgh, PA, Lincoln, NE, Dallas, TX, and Miami, FL. The Americans convened in Washington to meet the Europeans and receive orientation to GMF, and from here move on to cities including Brussels, Copenhagen, Freiburg, Bilbao, Rome, Belgrade, Sarajevo, and Paris. Read more about the MMF Program and other GMF Leadership initiatives.