Open World Leadership Center Delegation


Leaders from Tajikistan examine open governance in Virginia

U.S. and Tajik counterparts share experience through Open World Program

Contact: V. Renee Russell
VCU Global Education Office
Phone: (804) 828-3636

Open World delegation from Tajikistan

Richmond, VA (April 13, 2018) — Six Tajik leaders participating in the Open World Program will spend April 13-18, 2018, in Richmond examining the American system of government, with an emphasis on accountable governance. The program, hosted by Virginia Commonwealth University and managed by the Open World Leadership Center, enables emerging Eurasian political and civic leaders to work with their U.S. counterparts and experience American-style democracy at the local level. 

While in Richmond, the delegates will meet with state elected and appointed officials, hear from citizen advocacy groups such as the Virginia Public Access Project and observe the Virginia General Assembly in session. They will also have an opportunity to meet with representatives in the offices of Senators Mark Warner (D-VA) and Tim Kaine (D-VA), as well as Congressman Bobby Scott (D-VA), to learn how government officials address the needs of their constituents and run election campaigns. 

The visiting delegates are:

  • Gulbahor Ashurzoda, Deputy of the Majlisi Namoyandagon of the Majlisi Oli
  • Khushmuhammad Nuriddinzoda, Head of Inter-parliamentary Relations and Protocol Department of Majlisi Namoyandagon of the Majlisi Oli
  • Firuza Sharifi, Deputy of the Majlisi Namoyandagon of the Majlisi Oli
  • Azizi Abdujabbor, First Deputy Chairman of the Majlisi Namoyandagon of the Majlisi Oli
  • Bakhodur Akramzoda, Deputy, Assembly of Representatives, Majlisi Namoyandagon of the Majlisi Oly
  • Parviz Aydarshoev accompanies them as a facilitator.

“By hosting these international delegations, VCU is increasingly becoming the conduit connecting our community to the world,” said R. McKenna Brown, Ph.D., VCU senior international officer and Global Education Office executive director. “Richmond is an excellent location to learn about the U.S. These visitors hold high leadership positions back home and their very presence in our community enriches the environment for our students and faculty.”

Homestays with local residents will allow the delegates to experience American family life. They will also take part in several cultural and community activities, including driving tours of Richmond, a visit to the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and a tour of Colonial Williamsburg.

The hosting is a collaboration between VCU’s Global Education Office, the L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs and the Richard T. Robertson School of Media and Culture in the College of Humanities and Sciences.

This is the seventh year that VCU has hosted an Open World delegation with other groups coming from Ukraine in 2012, 2013 and 2016, from Russia in 2011 and 2014 and from the Republic of Georgia in 2015.

The Open World Program is a unique, nonpartisan initiative of the U.S. Congress designed to build mutual understanding between the United States and Eurasia. More than 27,000 current and future leaders from post-Soviet era countries have participated in an Open World exchange program since its inception.

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