Said Tayeb Jawad, former Ambassador of Afghanistan to the United States, is the Chairman of the Foundation for Afghanistan, a non-profit organization that focuses on increasing human capacity and intercultural dialogue in Afghanistan, and Chief Executive Officer of Capitalize LLC, a strategic consulting firm that specializes in the investment, security and political environments of Afghanistan and the greater Gulf region. Ambassador Jawad also recently became a member of the International Advisory Council in the Global Political Strategies group at APCO Worldwide, an international strategic communications consultancy. Ambassador Jawad holds two positions in the academic community: he recently joined the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at John Hopkins University as Diplomat in Residence and was named the inaugural Fisher Family Fellow at the Future of Diplomacy Project at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. In both of these capacities, he engages students and colleagues in a number of forums and public speaking events on the future of Afghanistan.
Ambassador Jawad served concurrently as Afghan Ambassador to the United States and non-resident Ambassador to Brazil, Argentina Colombia and Mexico from December 2003 until October 2010. Under his leadership, the Embassy of Afghanistan in Washington, D.C. emerged as one of the most successful foreign missions in Washington.
Ambassador Jawad returned to Afghanistan after 9/11 to assist in the state-building process. He served as President Karzai’s Press Secretary and Chief of Staff, as well as the Director of the Office of International Relations at the Presidential Palace. Ambassador Jawad formulated and managed strategies, implemented policies, assisted in the building of national institutions and prioritized reforms in Afghanistan. He also worked with the U.S. and Afghan military experts to reform the Ministry of Defense and rebuild the Afghan National Army. Ambassador Jawad was instrumental in drafting Afghanistan’s foreign investment laws; he served as the President’s principal liaison with the constitutional commission throughout the drafting Afghanistan’s Constitution.
Ambassador Jawad has published hundreds of articles and commentaries in the United States, Europe and Afghanistan. His op-eds have appeared in such publications as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Time, the International Herald Tribune, Der Spiegel, Le Monde, The Guardian, Foreign Affairs, Ambassador’s Review and Foreign Policy. Interviews with Ambassador Jawad have appeared in many prominent media outlets, including NBC’s “Meet the Press,” CNN’s “The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer,” Bloomberg’s “Night Talk with Mike Schneider,” CBS, C-SPAN, Al Jazeera, BBC and Voice of America.
Ambassador Jawad has lectured at many academic institutions, including Harvard University (Kennedy School of Government), Johns Hopkins University (School of Advanced International Studies) Princeton University, Stanford University, University of California Berkeley, Kansas State University, Georgetown University, George Washington University, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, University of Maryland, as well as the National Defense Intelligence College and National Defense University. He is also a frequent speaker at many think tanks and policy centers, including the Brookings Institute, the United States Institute of Peace, Center for Strategic and International Studies, Council on Foreign Relations, Center for American Progress, New America Foundation, American Bar Association, American Enterprise Institute, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, the Asia Society and over 21 member-state World Affairs Councils in North America.
The Ambassador is the recipient of various awards and honorary degrees, namely:
- Global Citizen Award, Roots of Peace, Washington, D.C., 2008.
- Honorary Doctorate Degree in Organization Leadership, Argosy University, Washington, D.C. 2007
- Award of Merit for Rebuilding a Nation, ASEE, Washington, D.C, 2007.
- Special Award for Improving Quality of Life, America Society for Civil Engineers, Massachusetts, Boston. 2004
- Honorary member of Blackfeet Tribe, American Indian Reservation in Montana, with Indian name “Sun Traveller.” Missoula, Montana, 2004.
- The Constitutional Loya Jirga Service, Medal, Government of Afghanistan. Kabul, Afghanistan, 2003.
Ambassador Jawad participated in hundreds of conferences related to Afghanistan and the region. Some of the forums include:
- “US-South Asia Leadership Engagement Program.” Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government & National Defense University. Cambridge, MA, May 16-20, 2011.
- “Addressing the Accountability Gap in Statebuilding: The Case of Afghanistan” Conference. Stanford University. Stanford, CA, February 25-26, 2011.
- The Halifax International Security Forum. The German Marshal Fund of the United States. Halifax, Nova Scotia, November 5-7, 2010.
- A Comprehensive Strategy in a Regional Context Leading Thinkers Workshop. The Foundation for the Defense of Democracies. Freeport, Bahamas. June 11-12, 2009.
- Emerald Express: Afghanistan at a Crossroads. National Defense University Quantico Base, USA. April 8, 2009.
- The Hague Centre for Strategic Studies Roundtable on the “New Strategy for Afghanistan.” Hague Centre for Strategic Studies. The Hague, Netherlands. March 30, 2009.
- “Back to the Future: Afghan Ownership” Academic Seminar. The Hague Academic Coalition. The Hague, Netherlands. March 30, 2009.
- Conference 2009: A Comprehensive Strategy in a Regional Context. The Government of the Netherlands. The Hague, Netherlands. March 31, 2009.
- Bilateral Meetings with Pakistan and Afghanistan, United Nations, New York, November 13, 2008.
- UN General Assembly 63rd Session, United Nations, New York, September 27, 2008.
- Security Council Debate on Afghanistan. United Nations, New York, July 9, 2008.
- Atlantic Alliance at a New Crossroads, German Marshall Fund and the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation, Istanbul, Turkey, June 15-17, 2008.
- U.S. Islamic World Forum, the State of Qatar, Doha, February 16-18, 2008.
- UN General Assembly 62nd Session, United Nations, New York, September 22, 2007.
- UN General Assembly 61st Session, United Nations, New York, September 22, 2006.
- London Conference on Afghanistan. London, Great Britain, January 31, 2006 to February 1, 2006.
- International Monetary Fund and World Bank Group Annual Meetings, Washington, DC, September 24-25, 2005.
- UN General Assembly 60th Session, United Nations, New York, September 22, 2005.
- International Monetary Fund and World Bank Group Annual Meetings, Washington, DC, October 23, 2004.
- UN General Assembly 59th Session, United Nations, New York, September 22, 2004
- 17th NATO Summit, Istanbul, Turkey, July 28-29, 2004.
- CransMontana Forum: Central Eastern Europe and New Economies Strategies with Gulf States, the Kingdom of Bahrain, Manama, December 3-5, 2003.
- The Labour Party Annual Conference, Bournemouth, United Kingdom. September 28-October 2, 2003.
- UN General Assembly 58th Session, United Nations, New York, September 22, 2003.
- Fighting Terrorism for Humanity, International Peace Academy, New York, September 22, 2003.
- Rebuilding A Nation Conference, US Trade and Development Agency, Chicago, Illinois, June 8-10, 2003.
- The Tokyo Conference on Consolidation of Peace in Afghanistan, the Japan Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Tokyo, Japan, February 22, 2003.
- XIII Non-Aligned Movement Summit, the Government of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur. February 20-25, 2003. Afghanistan Support Group Annual Meeting, the Kingdom of Norway, Oslo, Norway, December 17-18, 2002.
- Summit of States of Afghanistan, Pakistan and Turkmenistan, the Government of Turkmenistan, Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, October 26, 2002.
- Seventh ECO Heads of State Summit Meeting, the Government of Turkey, Istanbul, Turkey, October 14, 2002.
- The Twelfth ECO Council of Ministers Meeting, the Government of Turkey, Istanbul, Turkey, October 14, 2002.
- UN Friends of Afghanistan Conference on the situation in Afghanistan, United Nations, New York, September 15, 2002.
- Constitutional Loya Jirga, the Government of Afghanistan, Kabul, Afghanistan, June 10-16, 2002.
- Emergency Loya Jirga, the Government of Afghanistan, Kabul, Afghanistan. June 10, 2002.
- UNCTAD First Meeting Legal Affairs Working, Geneva, Switzerland, February 21, 2002.
- Campaign to Stop Gender Apartheid in Afghanistan, Feminist Majority Foundation, March 29, 1999.
From 2004-2010, the Ambassador has overseen President Hamid Karzai’s visits in the United States. He has also been part of several Presidential state visits to countries such as India, on February 23-25, 2008, Canada on September 2003, Warsaw, Poland on June 25-26, 2003 and Oslo, Norway on December 15-18, 2002.
Ambassador Jawad was educated at the Afghan French Lycée Esteqial and School of Law and Political Sciences at Kabul University and Westfaelische Wilhelms University in Muenster, Germany. He has earned his MBA from the Golden Gate University in San Francisco and worked for a number of prominent law firms in the United States.
He is fluent in English, German and French. He is married to Shamim Jawad, a financial consultant and founder of the Ayenda Foundation, and they have a son, Iman, who is currently studying for his BA at Tufts University.