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As the world watches the news and reads reports of the alarming violence and rising death toll, I find myself exceedingly concerned about the deteriorating situation in Egypt. My thoughts and prayers are with Egyptian citizens, most especially with the 33 Egyptian women who are part of our Women’s Initiative Fellowship. Readers of this blog are familiar with reports about and stories from the inspiring women who participate in our yearlong leadership program designed to equip and empower them to be effective leaders. As part of the program, the women learn skills to help build a stronger civil society which is foundational to a stable democracy; and they develop a robust network of women to rely upon.
Today, I heard from several of my Egyptian friends who have assured me of their safety and reminded me of their fortitude. One fellow noted, “We understand that Egypt is in unrest but not for long. Egyptians are uniting against terrorism.” Many of the fellows have expressed their belief that it is a struggle against terror, while supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood have just as passionately conveyed their viewpoint that they espouse democracy and not terrorism.
Regardless of one’s viewpoint, we know that too many lives are being lost and we pray that the violence ends quickly. Egypt’s heritage as one of the greatest civilizations should be preserved … and the women that are part of the Fellowship are doing their best to contribute to the future of their beloved nation. Despite almost insurmountable odds, we are encouraged that the Fellows are shaping their communities and achieving their goals. Next week, we will begin a Spotlight on the Fellows blog series that showcases their incredible accomplishments as they work to build a brighter future for Egypt. The remarkable women of the Women’s Initiative Fellowship inspire us and provide hope for a better Egypt.
Charity N. Wallace serves as the Senior Advisor to the Women's Initiative at the George W. Bush Institute and is in an executive graduate program in pursuit of a Global Master of Arts degree in international relations from The Fletcher School at Tufts University. Most recently, Ms. Wallace served as the Vice President of the Global Women’s Initiatives and Senior Advisor to Mrs. Laura Bush. In this role, Ms. Wallace was responsible for setting the vision and managing the policy engagement for the women’s initiatives, including Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon global health initiative, empowering women in the Middle East and working with First Ladies from around the world. The Women's Initiative aims to improve access to education, health care, and economic opportunity for women and children in Africa, the Middle East and Afghanistan.
From February 2009 through September 2010, Wallace served as the Chief of Staff to Mrs. Laura Bush. Wallace oversaw Mrs. Bush’s initiatives - from her wide ranging policy agenda to her the publishing and promotion of Mrs. Bush’s bestselling book, Spoken from the Heart. Wallace served in the Bush Administration from January 2001 to January 2009. During her tenure in the administration, she served as Deputy Chief of Protocol of the United States (2007-2009), Director of Advance for First Lady Laura Bush (2004-2007), and worked in public liaison positions in Presidential Advance, the U.S. Department of Education, the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, and USA Freedom Corps. During her tenure in the Bush Administration and in her current role, Wallace has traveled to 70 countries.
Ms. Wallace serves on the Board of Advisors for the School of Public Policy at Pepperdine University, the Advisory Board of ARZU Studio Hope, the Advisory Board of 4word Women and the Advisory Board of All In Together, an bi-partisan organization that promotes women’s engagement in political and civic life. Ms. Wallace is an ex-officio member on the Human Freedom Advisory Council for the Bush Institute. Ms. Wallace wrote the foreword for the book Work, Love, Pray, which was released in 2011. A native of California, Ms. Wallace graduated magna cum laude from Pepperdine University with a Bachelor of Arts in political science, with a focus in international relations.Full Bio
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