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Meet the Team

Claudia Abate

Claudia Abate
Executive Director and President of the Board, Treasurer
Claudia Abate, created the Foundation for Post Conflict Development (FPCD) after working at the United Nations (UN) for more than a decade, and realizing that her most fulfilling moments were when she was sent on official business to post conflict countries. In an effort to make a personal impact in assisting the world’s most vulnerable citizens, it was a natural progression for her to create this foundation, inspired primarily by observing the elections in Fiji, and her work in Timor-Leste at the time of the Restoration of independence. With these combined experiences, Ms. Abate saw first- hand democracy in action, and the effects of poverty on citizens of other countries as a consequence of post conflict situations. This inspired her “to want to do more.”
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Amanda Nesheiwat
Vice President
Amanda currently works as the Environmental Director for the Town of Secaucus, NJ. She is an organizer and environmental activist and is passionate about sustainable development and climate change solutions. She has served as a youth delegate in conferences including the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Doha, Qatar and Rio + 20: United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development. Amanda was trained by Al Gore and his team to effectively present information about climate change as a Climate Reality Leader. She is a sought-after public speaker and consultant for municipalities on the economic benefits of sustainability. Amanda is a recipient of the 2014 United Nations ATOP Peace Award for her work in Environmental Sustainability. She has a M.S. in Sustainability Management from Stevens Institute of Technology.


Missy Stephens
Board Member
Missy Stephens is an international development strategist specializing in Peacebuilding and Statebuilding for fragile and conflict-affected nations. She was senior advisor to His Excellency, Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste from 2008–2016; and was the senior strategist tasked with developing and operationalizing the G7+, which represents 21 member countries facing conflict and fragility. Ms. Stephens has mediated, negotiated and co-written landmark documents including the Dili Declaration, the Monrovia Roadmap, the maiden speech to the United Nations General Assembly for the 21 heads of state for the G7+, as well as The New Deal For Engagement in Fragile States—the first aid architecture specific to fragile and conflict-affected States. Ms. Stephens wrote the zero draft of the thirty-year Timor-Leste Strategic Development Plan while providing strategic advice on securing the maritime boundary between Timor-Lest and Australia and securing the resources within. Ms. Stephens lives in Sydney, Australia, and is currently working on Project LOVE (Land, Livestock and Ocean Vocational Exchange), an ambitious plan to meet Sustainable Development Goal number two, Zero Hunger


Michelle Tafur
Michelle is currently a Senior Consultant with the firm, Booz Allen Hamilton. She works with government organizations to identify opportunities for innovation and develops policy to support achievement of long-term objectives. She is pursuing an M.A. at American University’s School of International Service in the International Peace and Conflict Resolution program. Prior to her work with Booz Allen, she was a Lead Political Compliance Officer with Deloitte’s Anti-Corruption Program. Over the past ten years, she has gained extensive project management experience, focusing on risk mitigation, international development, and public policy. This work includes overseas field work: in Kenya, she collaborated with the Ministry of Agriculture to provide training on the distribution of a needs-based demographic survey; and in Haiti, she assisted with the site inspection and key ceremony of a newly constructed health clinic.


Judy Tashji
Judy has directed creative services in New York City over a career spanning 30 years, with extensive experience in non-profit and higher education communications. A recipient of the Prism Fellowship, she earned an M.A. in Communications Management and Technology at New York University’s School of Professional Studies. She has received numerous awards including recognition by the University & College Designers Association, the Franklin Award, and Higher Education Marketing Report. She is an active member of NYC’s League of Women Voters, working on events and publications—most recently What Makes New York City Run?, the League’s book on navigating City government. During election season, Judy also works with the Associated Press, supervising vote tabulation at their NY Election Center. She is passionate about science, the environment, and the interconnectivity of all things.


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