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Newsroom Press release

Open Society Names Daniela Schwarzer as Executive Director for Europe and Eurasia

NEW YORK—The Open Society Foundations today announced that Daniela Schwarzer will take on the newly created role of executive director for Europe and Eurasia on May 1, 2021. Schwarzer will lead and bring together Open Society’s work across both regions, overseeing advocacy and grant-making activities.

“I am thrilled to welcome Daniela Schwarzer as our new regional director for Europe and Eurasia. She is one of the foremost European thought leaders and comes to us with a wealth of leadership experience. Daniela joins Open Society as we create our new vision and structure for the future, and I am confident that under her leadership in Europe and Eurasia we can build on our impressive legacy in those regions and strive for even greater impact,” said Mark Malloch-Brown, president of Open Society.

Daniela Schwarzer

Daniela Schwarzer is a renowned expert in European affairs and international relations. Since 2016, she has served as Director and CEO of the German Council on Foreign Relations, where she has steered the organization’s strategic repositioning and modernization and has advised the EU Commission and national governments on European affairs. She is an honorary professor of political science at Freie Universität Berlin and a Senior Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Belfer Center.

Prior to leading the German Council on Foreign Relations, Daniela Schwarzer was a member of the executive team of the German Marshall Fund of the United States, where she served as its senior director of research, as well as heading its Berlin office and Europe program from 2013 to 2016, and spent eight years at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs, where she led the European integration department from 2008 to 2013.

Under the leadership of the newly appointed executive director for Europe and Eurasia, existing entities in the regions including the Open Society Initiative for Europe, the Open Society European Policy Institute, the Roma Initiatives Office, and the Eurasia Program will become one single integrated Europe and Eurasia team. Schwarzer will set regional priorities and, building on the legacy and current work in Europe and Eurasia, seek to ensure Open Society is best positioned to address current and future challenges.

“I am honored to lead the Open Society Foundations’ work in Europe and Eurasia at a time when the organization is fundamentally transforming its way of working to meet today’s challenges and seize new opportunities in its fight for liberal democracy and rule of law,” Schwarzer said. “I am looking forward to engaging with a broad spectrum of actors, including civil society, government, and business, to advance positive change.”

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