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Our Mission

The Friends of the American University of Afghanistan (FAUAF) supports specific charitable, scientific and educational purposes activities conducted by academic institutions in Afghanistan, including but not limited to The American University of Afghanistan (AUAF), both by supporting the programs and facilities of such academic institutions within Afghanistan and its associated community in locations outside Afghanistan and by increasing awareness and understanding of such academic institutions in communities outside Afghanistan.

Our primary grantee is the American University of Afghanistan (AUAF), Afghanistan’s only nationally accredited private, not-for-profit, non-partisan and co-educational university.

Since enrolling its first class in 2006, comprised of 51 students (50 male students and one female), AUAF has educated hundreds of graduates, many of whom are rising stars in fields ranging from law to science and business to politics. Approximately 11% of these exceptional graduates have been awarded Fulbright Scholarships – the highest number of Fulbright awardees, as a percentage of graduates, of any academic institution in the world. Today, AUAF educates over 1,000 students with women comprising 45% of the student population.


Additionally, through the Professional Development Institute (PDI), AUAF has trained over 22,000 professional Afghans.

Keystone programs include the Stanford University Law School Afghanistan Legal Education Project (ALEP), which offers a 4-year LLB degree; the MBA program; the PDI; and Science, Technology, and Mathematics (STM) programming. AUAF seeks to maximize resources and investments to scale these programs over the next five years.


AUAF mirrors today’s modern Afghanistan: a young, civically engaged student population representing all 34 provinces of Afghanistan, across every ethnicity and credence, and motivated by a deep feeling of responsibility to their community and institutions.

It has produced the highest percentage of Fulbright scholars of any university in the world

Offers a five-year law program managed by Stanford Law School

Reached 50% female enrollment within its first few years of opening

our story


Board of Directors

Ms. Leslie M. Schweitzer

Founder and Chair
Leslie Schweitzer is the President and Chair of Friends of AUAF, and serves on the AUAF Board of Trustees. From 1999 to 2011, Schweitzer served as a consultant in the capacity of Senior Trade Advisor for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. In 2013, Schweitzer received an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters degree from AUAF.

Mr. Kevin Haggerty

Kevin Haggerty brings over 35 years of experience in financial oversight in the international development, computer software and consulting services industries. Currently, Haggerty is the CFO at ACDI/VOCA with prior experience at Institute of International Education (IIE), DAI and Ernst & Young.

Dr. Ellen S. Hurwitz

Ellen Hurwitz is the Senior Consultant at Steven’s Strategy, an award winning professor of history, author and past president of three institutions of higher learning: Albright College, New England College, and American University of Central Asia in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan where she is President Emerita and Executive Director of its Foundation.

Ms. Sarah Peck

Sarah Peck is a career diplomat from Boston, Massachusetts. She is currently the Executive Director of the U.S.-Pakistan Women’s Council. Sarah has extensive experience on regional issues. She previously served as the Political Team Lead at the Office of Pakistan Affairs at the U.S. State Department. Prior to joining the desk, she worked as a Pearson Fellow for in-coming Secretary of State Kerry at the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, where she focused on Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Amb. Steven E. Steiner

Steve Steiner is the gender advisor for the U.S. Institute of Peace. He previously served in the Department of State’s Office of Global Women’s Issues and the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons. Steiner has served for over 36 years in the United States Foreign Service.

Ms. Michelle Quinn

Vice Chair
Michelle is Senior Vice President of Patriot Group International, a mission-focused organization providing security, operational, Logistics, and training solutions for the Department of Defense, Department of State, and other Government Agencies. At PGI, Michelle leads efforts to support critical U.S. missions and programs both CONUS and OCONUS, establishing relationships with the USG and industry partners, building technical solutions for programs, and standing up/executing PGI contracts.

Ms. Elaina Edwards

Elaina Edwards is Vice President at Louis Berger US. She has served in a range of operational, business development, strategy and marketing leadership roles. Her experience includes supporting U.S. government, multilateral institutions and commercial clients with a focus on mega programs. Ms. Edwards has managed winning proposals for more than $3 billion in contracts, including a $1.4 billion single-award contract for Afghanistan reconstruction.

Ms. Suzanne Kianpour

Suzanne Kianpour is an Emmy nominated journalist who has spent nearly a decade with the BBC reporting on foreign affairs, politics and breaking news. With postings based in Washington, London, Beirut, and Los Angeles, her reporting has taken her around the world to over 50 countries.

Ms. Annie Pforzheimer

A retired career diplomat with the rank of Minister Counselor from the U.S. Department of State, Annie is a Senior Non-Resident Associate at CSIS, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and a public commentator on Afghanistan and rule of law issues. She was until March 2019 the Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Afghanistan and from 2017-2018 was the Deputy Chief of Mission in Kabul, one of the largest U.S. embassies in the world, during a period of both intensified violence and the beginnings of the ongoing peace process.

Ms. Karolyn Stuver

Karolyn Stuver is the Executive Director of Communications, Marketing and Strategic Planning at Flour Corporation. Prior to her position at Flour, Stuver served as the Director of Strategy, Marketing and Communications at KBR.

Dr. Evan S. Dobelle

Evan Dobelle is the Managing Director of Countable, a high tech company with offices in Washington, D.C. and San Francisco. Dobelle is the former President of City College of San Francisco, University of Hawaii, and Trinity College (CT). Dobelle offers a bold vision for the value of education and the challenges of building a community in a fast-changing world.

Ms. Teri Galvez

Teri Galvez is President of Paradigm Event Management, a Marketing, Special Events, and Conference Planning Company which she launched in 1996. Among her clients are Fortune 500 Companies, Non-profits, and National Associations. Teri served for eight years on the Advisory Board of the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship and was on the Board of Trustees for Voices for Americas Children. She serves on the Board of Directors of Gala Theatre, Think Freely Latino, and the US Senate Task Force on Hispanic Affairs.

Ms. Michelle Kosinski

Michelle Kosinski is CNN’s senior diplomatic correspondent responsible for covering the State Department. Previously, Kosinski served as the network’s White House correspondent during the Obama administration. She contributes to all CNN programs and platforms.

Amb. Robin L. Raphel

Robin Raphel worked for nearly 40 years in foreign affairs agencies, including the U.S. Department of State, U.S. Agency for International Development, and U.S. Department of Defense. She has served as assistant secretary of state for South Asia, ambassador to Tunisia, vice president of the National Defense University, and deputy special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction.

AUAF Honorary Degree of Doctor of Humane Letters

Mrs. Holly Holzer Bass

Dr. Ehsan Bayat

Mr. Fredric S. Berger

Mr. David G. Bradley

First Lady Laura Bush

Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton

Ambassador Ryan Clark Crocker

Ms. Nancy Hatch Dupree

Dr. Sharif Fayez

Mr. Tom Freston

Dr. Robert M. Gates

President Hamid Karzai

Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad

Amb. Nurjehan Mawani Aga Khan

Mr. Samuel G. Nappi

General (Ret.) John W. Nicholson Jr.

General (Ret.) David H. Petraeus

Mr. David M. Rubenstein

Ms. Leslie M. Schweitzer

Mr. David S. Sedney

Dr. S. Frederick Starr

Dr. Debra Zumwalt

AUAF International Public Service Awards

Asian Development Bank

Dr. Eshan Bayat

Mr. David G. Bradley

First Lady Laura Bush

General (Ret.) John F. Campbell

The Honorable Susan Davis

Ms. Caroline Firestone

Dr. Robert M. Gates

Mrs. Rula Ghani

Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad

The Honorable Carl Levin

Dr. Phyllis R. Magrab

His Excellency Yousef Al Otaiba

General (Ret.) David H. Petraeus

Ms. Gayle E. Smith

Roshan Telecom

The Honorable Niki Tsongas