AWAC Presents – America’s Diplomats

This unique program will featured the documentary, America’s Diplomats, followed by a live Q&A with Ambassador John Yates. Those interested in diplomacy as a potential career as well as those who love learning about and engaging with America’s history, will not want to miss this program.



  • John Yates, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice appointed Ambassador (ret.) John M. Yates as Special Envoy for Somalia on May 17, 2007. As Special Envoy, Ambassador Yates will play a critical role in engaging with representatives of Somalia’s Transitional Federal Government, other key stakeholders, and regional and international partners to assist Somalia with creating a stable government as it emerges from over 14 years of instability and lawlessness.Ambassador Yates, who is currently leading the Somalia Unit based at the U.S. Embassy in Nairobi, Kenya comes to this post with considerable experience, having represented the U.S. as an observer to the Somalia National Reconciliation Conference at Mbagathi, Kenya, that established the Transitional Federal Charter and the Transitional Federal Institutions, which serve as the framework for the reestablishment of governance in Somalia.A career Foreign Service Officer with more than 40 years experience, Ambassador Yates was one of the Department’s leading Africa specialists prior to his retirement in 2002. He served as Ambassador to Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea (1998 – 2001); Ambassador to Benin (1995 – 1998); Ambassador to Cape Verde (1983 – 1986); and as Charge d’Affaires in Zaire (1993 – 1995). He also was Deputy Chief of Mission in Lagos, Nigeria, and Libreville, Gabon with concurrent responsibility for Sao Tome & Principe. Other assignments in Africa include Algeria, Malawi and Mali. Most recently, Ambassador Yates was designated as the head of the U.S. delegation to the Darfur, Sudan peace talks, which took place in Abuja during 2005 and 2006. In 2003, he served as the Senior Advisor for Africa at the U.S. Mission to the United Nations.

    Non-African assignments included service in the Philippines, Turkey, and in India as Staff Assistant to former Ambassador Daniel Patrick Moynihan. He also was the Acting Director of the African Affairs Office of the Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research in 2002.
    Ambassador Yates received his B.A. in International Relations from Stanford University. He earned a Master’s degree in International Affairs, a Master’s degree in Law and Diplomacy, and a PhD in Law and Diplomacy, all from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University.


  • Lise Falskow, President & CEO of Alaska World Affairs Council

HOST: Alaska World Affairs Council


RECORDED: Friday, December 02, 2016 at the Bear Tooth Theatre.


Eric Bork, or you can just call him “Bork” because everybody else does, is the FM Operations Manager for KSKA-FM. He oversees the day-to-day operations of the FM broadcast. He produces and edits episodes of Outdoor Explorer, the Alaska-focused outdoors program. He also maintains the web posts for that show. You may have heard him filling in for Morning Edition or hosting All Things Considered and can still find him operating the soundboard for any of the live broadcast programs.

After escaping the Detroit area when he was 18, Bork made it up to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, where he earned a degree in Communications/Radio Broadcasting from Northern Michigan University. He spent time managing the college radio station, working for the local NPR affiliate, and then in top 40 radio in Michigan before coming to Alaska to work his first few summers. After then moving to Chicago, it only took five years to convince him to move back to Alaska in 2010. When not involved in great radio programming he’s probably riding a bicycle, thinking about riding bicycles, dreaming about bikes, reading a book, or planning the next place he’ll travel to. Only two continents left to conquer!

Previous articleWomen’s March draws thousands in downtown Anchorage
Next articleAlgo Nuevo January 22, 2017