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1996 Graduate Receives Prestigious Award for Her Contributions to U.S. Foreign Policy

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    Farhana (Ali) Qazi with children on one of her visits to Pakistan

Farhana (Ali) Qazi is one of the country’s leading experts on Pakistan

The National Committee on American Foreign Policy has voted to give 1996 Southwestern graduate Farhana (Ali) Qazi one of its two 21st Century Council Leader Awards.

The awards recognize the achievements of individuals under the age of 40 who display a serious commitment to furthering the United States’ strategic policy interests in accord with the principles of political realism. Through their professional or personal pursuits, they make important contributions to the international dialogue and demonstrate a promising future in the realm of American foreign policy.

The award will be presented at a March 8 gala also honoring Karl Eikenberry, the former U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, and Muhtar Kent, chairman and CEO of The Coca Cola Company.

“It is wonderful to see others recognize this marvelous young woman as she continues to grow and develop her myriad gifts,” said Eric Selbin, professor of political science and University Scholar.

Qazi was born in Pakistan, but was raised in Texas after her family immigrated to the United States. After graduating from Southwestern with a degree in political science, she earned a master’s degree in security policy studies from The George Washington University. She spent five years working as a counterterrorism analyst for the U.S. government before leaving the federal government in 2005 to work as an international policy analyst at the RAND Corporation, a nonprofit think-tank based in Arlington, Va.

Qazi is now an expert on Afghanistan and Pakistan for the international consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton and a senior fellow at the Center for Advanced Studies on Terrorism. She is the author of a forthcoming book titled From Mothers to Martyrs: Why Women Kill and is frequently sought out by media outlets for her expertise on the Muslim world.

Selbin noted that even as a student, Qazi worked hard to bring other cultures to the Southwestern community and open people’s minds and hearts to the world around them. “Since then, as she has gone on to make a difference in the world, she has never lost her commitment to the Southwestern community, as her frequent trips back to campus to speak to the campus, to classes, at symposiums, and to meet with students interested in careers in government, U.S. foreign policy, and making a difference in the world,” he said.

Most recently, she returned to campus to participate in a symposium organized to mark the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.

In selecting Qazi for the award, representatives from NCAFP said “The breadth of her experience and expertise − not to mention accomplishments − is more than impressive.”

The National Committee on American Foreign Policy is a nonprofit, nonpartisan activist organization dedicated to the resolution of conflicts that threaten U.S. interests.

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