About Southeast Connecticut World Affairs Council

The Southeast Connecticut World Affairs Council, a member of the World Affairs Council of America, engages leading global voices to foster a deeper understanding of timely issues that bear directly on America’s vital global interests. Between September and June, SECWAC arranges up to a dozen speaker series meetings, with events taking place along the I-95 corridor, welcoming members and guests from Stonington to Branford, and beyond. Featured speakers have included policymakers, diplomats, authors, educators, and other experts on foreign relations and global affairs.

Committed to civil discourse and discussion, SECWAC seeks to host the widest possible range of views while advocating none, providing opportunities for nonpartisan, collegial dialogue between members and speakers. The national World Affairs Council office assists members of the SECWAC Board in identifying high-quality speakers for lectures and panel discussions.

SECWAC is pleased to partner in 2023 with the Essex Public Library for the Foreign Policy Association’s “Great Decisions” program and Essex Meadows on its Arts & Exploration Lecture Series. Through its educational outreach program, SECWAC presents panel discussions at local high schools, with panelists speaking on topics related to global affairs and international business.


Past Speakers

Portrait of Fiona Hill
Fiona Hill, Brookings Institution
Portrait of Peter Baker and Susan Glasser
Peter Baker, The New York Times, and Susan Glasser, The New Yorker
Portrait of Ada Ferrer
Ada Ferrer, New York University
Portrait of John Lewis Gaddis
John Lewis Gaddis, Yale University
Portrait of George Packer
George Packer, The New Yorker
Portrait of Stephen Walt
Stephen Walt, Harvard University
Marci Shore Portrait
Marci Shore, Yale University
Andrew Bacevich, The Quincy Institute
Andrew Bacevich, The Quincy Institute
Peter Beinart, City University of New York
Peter Beinart, City University of New York
Thomas Wright, Brookings Institution
Thomas Wright, Brookings Institution

Board of Directors

Chairman Chip Goodrich
Executive Director Paul Nugent
Secretary Alexander Ochse
Treasurer Atif Faruqui
  • Amy Dooling, Professor, Connecticut College
  • Allan Dodds Frank, Retired Journalist
  • Bruce D. Cummings LFACHE, Healthcare Executive
  • Atif Faruqui, Pfizer, Inc
  • Chip Goodrich, Attorney with Specialty in International Banking
  • Scott Hefter, Senior Advisor and Independent Consultant
  • Jacqueline Jaffe, Retired Professor of Literature
  • Elizabeth Lightfoot, Director of Operations, The Witness Stones Project
  • Tracy McKee, Retired Financial Executive and Consultant
  • Paul NugentEx-Officio Member, Scientist at Pfizer
  • Alexander Ochse, Financial Advisor, Liberty Bank/Raymond James Financial Services
  • Robin Sedgwick, Psychoanalyst