Our Team


Aaron Manaigo, Managing Partner


Is the former New York State, Bronx County District Leader {R} 78th Assembly District for two terms from (1995-1998).  Mr. Manaigo has over 20 years experience managing projects in the public and private sector.  As a business leader he has provided professional services to — Allstate Insurance Co., Quixotic Solutions, the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey, the U.S. Dept. of Commerce, the U.S. Department of State the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Embassy of Australia, Trinidad & Tobago, Grenada, the Embassy of Afghanistan, the Embassy of South Africa, the Embassy of Uganda,  Mobilize for Haiti, U.S. Fast Food Coalition, the Hydrogen Energy Coalition, Universal/Vivendi Corporation, and Hope World Wide.

Mr. Manaigo has served as an advisory board member at the Center for Strategic & International Studies {CSIS} Abshire – Inamori Project.   In 2006, Mr. Manaigo became a political science instructor at Bowie State University- School of History & Government teaching advance courses in political science.  Mr. Manaigo received his undergraduate education at Clark Atlanta University where he majored in Communications.  He later attended New York University and studied at the School of Continuing Education public relations and marketing program.  He also attended Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business while studying International Business Management.

Previously, Aaron worked with U.S. House of Representative members Charles B. Rangel and the Congressional Black Caucus as well as former Republican House Conference Chairman, J.C. Watts, respectively on the passage and implementation of The Community Renewal Act, and The U.S. Empowerment Zone Initiatives, to support under-served communities across America.  Aaron was instrumental in lobbying for the passage of the Africa Growth & Opportunity Act 2000.

Part of his political activity includes having served on the New York State Republican Executive Committee.  In 1997 he worked as a Bronx county coordinator for former New York City mayor Rudy Giuiliani.  On a national level, Mr. Manaigo has worked as a political strategist for Republican Party candidates.  In 2000, Aaron worked with the George W. Bush campaign to outreach to the minority community to recruit African American republican delegates to the 2000 convention.    He is the immediate past chairman of the National Council of Black Republicans, an organization created to recruit, mobilize, and represent the interests of African Americans within the Republican Party.  Most recently, Aaron served as the Senior Advisor for the Friends of Herman Cain Campaign and in 2008 he served on the senior staff for U.S. Senator John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign as the National Director of Coalitions.  In this capacity, he was responsible for the organization and management of all ethnic, professional, religious, business and Veterans related organizations throughout the country.

Mr. Manaigo has represented the United States in Australia as part of an international delegation of post Olympic observers.  In addition, Mr. Manaigo served on a Congressional delegation in May ’00 that toured South Africa and again in February of 2001 as part of a U.S. political fact finding trip. Mr. Manaigo lead a political delegation to Asia, (Taiwan) and in so doing became the first African American within the Republican Party to lead a political delegation to that country.  Mr. Manaigo is also a 1995 Who’s Who World Wide inductee.


Amb. Edith Grace Ssempala, Sr. Advisor


Ambassador Ssempala has served as an Ambassador for the Republic of Uganda for over 20  years to a wide array of countries throughout the world—to include Ambassador Extra-ordinary and Plenipotentiary  to the United States (Washington, DC), Ambassador Extra-ordinary and Plenipotentiary of the  Republic of Uganda to Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Iceland (Nordic Countries) with residence in Copenhagen Ambassador Extra-ordinary and Plenipotentiary of the  Republic of Uganda to the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and  to the Republic of Djibouti, with residence in Addis Ababa.  She also served as Dean of the Diplomatic Corps, Copenhagen, 1992 to 1996

Ambassador Ssempala has been a stalwart champion advocating for the advancement of not only her beloved Uganda but the entire African diaspora.  She has served as; Permanent Representative of the Uganda to the African Union (AU), United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, and Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) headquartered in Djibouti, Member of the Permanent Representatives Committee of the AU, Member and Representative of Uganda to the Peace and Security Council of the AU, Member of the Committee of Ambassadors of the IGAD Member States and Member of the G15 Group of Ambassadors based in Addis Ababa.  She is also credited with a successful campaign for the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) and the United States President’s Emergency Relief Fund for HIV/AIDS, including but not limited to:

Gave Testimony before the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry on AGOA

Televised interview promoting AGOA with Foreign Exchange, a weekly half-hour international affairs series hosted by noted author, journalist and international commentator, Fareed Zakaria

Provided key remarks at Press Conference Highlighting the Legislation Extending AGOA alongside former U.S. Trade Representative Robert Zoellick, Presented at the 40th Annual Meeting of The Association for International Agriculture and Rural Development on “Contributions of AGOA to Africa’s Development”; Quoted in AGOA Forum 2005 Guide issued by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of African Affairs in May 2005.

Ambassador Ssempala has been the recipient of numerous awards and official recognitions to include; Chairperson of the Peace and Security Council of the African Union for the month of August 2007, Addis Ababa, which made decisions on Burundi; Comoros; Darfur; Implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement between the Government of Sudan and the SLM/SPLA; (CPA); Conflict in the region of Darfur; Central African Republic and Chad;

Serves as member of the Advisory Council of African Ambassadors for The Africa Society of the National Summit on Africa – Based in Washington D.C.; Serves as member of the Advisory Board for the Discovery Channel Global Education Partnership – Based in Washington D.C.; Serves as member of the Executive Committee of the Partnership to cut hunger and Poverty in Africa – Based in Washington D.C.; Served as member of the Advisory Board at the Center  for Strategic and International Studies – Africa Program – based in Washington D.C.; Served as Board Member of the Advisory Panel of the Institute for Security Studies (ISS) – based in South Africa.

Most recently, Ambassador Ssempala worked at the World Bank in several senior level positions, bringing with her a unique perspective and profound knowledge of Africa.  From 2008-2011 while at the World Bank she served as; Director, International Affaires; Acting Senior Vice President for five months; Senior Advisor on relations with Global Civil Society and Improved relations with African Governments and global Civil Society; Secured unprecedented public support for Capital Increase and IDA 16 replenishment from the African Union and major global Civil Society Organizations.

Ambassador Ssempala received a Masters in Civil Engineering, Lumumba University, Moscow – Russian Federation and Uganda Advanced Certificate of Education (A’Level) Awarded by the Uganda National Examinations Board (UNEB).

Linda S. Jamison, Managing Director Training & Development


Linda Jamison has over 20 years of professional experience building organizations, leading teams, providing research and analysis, developing programs and people, advising decision makers, and mentoring and training aspiring leaders. Her substantive expertise is in leadership and U.S. policy, international communication, US-UN relations, Executive-Legislative relations, and the politics of U.S. foreign policy.

Linda recently served in the White House as Special Assistant to President Obama, and led the team responsible for hiring and recruiting political appointees for the national security agencies of the U.S. Government. Her portfolio included the Departments of Defense, State, Veteran’s Affairs, Homeland Security, and the Agency for International Development, Millennium Challenge Corporation, the Peace Corps, as well as the Directorate of National Intelligence and the CIA. She also was responsible for facilitating the appointment of political ambassadors and members of U.S. Government Boards and Commissions who serve at the pleasure of the President.

Before joining the Obama Administration, Linda was the founding Dean of the Abshire-Inamori Leadership Academy at the Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, DC, where she created an international leadership academy and developed discrete curricula to train aspiring leaders both in the United States and from overseas. During the seven years that she led the Academy, Linda was responsible for helping to train and coach several hundred participants in the art and practice of leadership. Her range of training and coaching experience includes college students and young professionals just beginning to understand themselves in the workplace, to mid-career and senior executives looking to amplify their skills and aspire to senior leadership positions in government and the private sector. While at CSIS, she also held the title of Senior Fellow in Multilateral Studies, and conducted research and analysis, writing on a variety of policy issues, giving media interviews and providing substantive input to the Center’s work.

Linda’s career includes holding professional positions at the UN, as the director of an advocacy organization, and on Capitol Hill and in the Colorado State Legislature as a staffer. She is a published author and public speaker, as well as a contributor to media stories. She also writes (unpublished) fiction. Linda is a native of Colorado.


Noe Garcia III, Sr. Advisor- Government Relations


 With more than 17 years of policy, communications and political experience, Noe Garcia III, has managed key initiatives at the U.S. Department of Treasury, The White House, the U.S. Senate and global Fortune 500 companies serving as a policy and political advisor to the Secretary of the Treasury, the President of the United States and the Majority Leader of the U.S. Senate and CEO of CEMEX, USA.

His policy background and position in the Senate as a principal negotiator on issues including trade, his role as a political advisor to the President on immigration, and his financial background gained at the U.S. Department of Treasury provide him with unique insight into the internal workings of the U.S. Senate, US government agencies and the White House.  He was a key author of the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Partnership for Prosperity and was awarded the U.S. Department of Treasury’s highest honor for his service on September 11, 2001.

 Garcia has also played a significant role in the last three Presidential elections, including George W. Bush 2000, 2004 and McCain 2008 and oversaw all coalitions campaigns and all Hispanic political activity including media ads.  He was named one of Hispanic Business Magazine’s “100 Most Influential Hispanics,” and profiled by “Hispanics Today” on NBC-TV for his influence on Senate policy issues.

 Mr. Garcia co-founded Corporate Political Strategies, LLC in 2008. Prior to his current role, Mr. Garcia served as the Manager of Government Relations for Cemex, USA where he was responsible for federal, state and local lobbying including managing corporate campaigns against Cap and Trade legislation.

 Mr. Garcia’s clients include GE, International Bank of Commerce, NTN24, Radio Canal Nacional, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, CHI Systems, American Gaming Association and National Financial Corporation.

 Mr. Garcia currently serves on the Board of the Hispanic Lobbyist Association and is a graduate of Texas A&M University. He currently resides in Arlington, VA


Mark Cowan, Sr. Advisor & Strategic Partner

 As the Chief Executive Officer of Cowan Strategies, Mark Cowan draws on more than 35 years experience working on complex domestic and international public policy issues as counsel for a broad range of clients. He advises corporations, government entities, and foreign sovereigns on a wide array of business, regulatory, and trade issues.

 Mr. Cowan, a lawyer, has headed three companies of his own, been a senior partner at Patton Boggs, LLP, an AM Law 100 firm, wherein he both created and directed the firm’s Business Development Department and effort for over 500 lawyers.  Having founded The Jefferson Group in 1987, Mr. Cowan grew that public affairs firm to become the second largest in its class in six years before selling the company.  Thereafter, he was Vice Chairman of Cassidy & Associates, Washington’s largest public affairs company, C.E.O. of the Columbus Group, C.E.O. of Newmyer Associates and a Senior Vice President at Hill and Knowlton, one of the world’s largest public relations firms, where he counseled numerous domestic and international clients.

Before entering the private sector, Mr. Cowan held presidential appointments in three administrations. During the first Reagan administration, he served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health until his appointment as Chief of Staff and Counselor to the Secretary of Labor in 1982. Later, President George H.W. Bush appointed him as a Commissioner on the National Commission on Employment Policy. More recently, President George W. Bush appointed him as a Member of the President’s Council on the 21st Century Work Force.

In addition to his presidential appointments, Mr. Cowan has held several other government posts. He was Counsel to the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct (ethics) of the U.S. House of Representatives. He also served at the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) as an operations officer, serving abroad and as a country desk chief in the agency’s Directorate of Operations, and later held the position of Assistant Legislative Counsel to the Director of Central Intelligence. In the U.S. Air Force, Captain Cowan flew in the back seat of the F-101 fighter interceptor.

Michael Davis, Esq., Managing Director


Has specialized in immigration law, trade and dispute resolution.  He is a former instructor in two disciplines {contracts, business law} at Howard University.  Michael has a distinguished background in antitrust reviews relating to mergers and acquisitions.

Mr. Davis has also worked on many environmental law issues domestically and internationally.  Michael is an active member of the U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia.  He holds a joint degree in business management and political science from the University of Massachusetts School of Business and received his law degree from the University of Oregon School of Law.

Michael served on the legal advisory team for Barack Obama during the 2008 U.S. presidential election for the primary and general election cycles.  He is a native of Dominica.

Richardson J. Franklin, Sr. Advisor


For the past 20 years Mr. Franklin has worked with government Ministers, senior public servants and private sector executives on an array of issues in telecoms, trade and national security.

From July 2004 to May 2010, Mr. Franklin has served as the Special Technical Advisor to the Minister of National Security in Trinidad and Tobago and has excellent knowledge of the security challenges in the region.  He had primary responsibility for vetting all technology and infrastructure proposals. This involved: migrating the police radio system from analogue to digital; introducing the country’s first CCTV network; and developing a programme to introduce a modern enterprise management system based on SharePoint to the Ministry.  He also worked closely with law enforcement to ensure modern training and policing techniques were introduced.  Also oversaw and assisted in the redesign and upgrade of the Police Training Academy.  Working in concert with the senior police management, oversaw the implementation of a gang unit and a new intelligence led policing regime.  In completing these tasks maintained a close working relationship with locally based FBI and DEA personnel.  Mr. Franklin led a four-man delegation to Washington, D.C. to discuss cyber-crime with the Department of Justice, FBI and DEA.

Prior to joining the Ministry of National Security, Mr. Franklin headed Booz Allen Hamilton’s international telecommunications team.  He has more than 20 years experience in financial analysis, restructuring, and telecommunications in Africa, the Caribbean, and Eastern Europe.   He has worked extensively on World Bank and Inter-American Development funded projects involving financial modelling and forecasting, ratio analysis, alternative financing schemes, financial feasibility studies, tariff structures, regulatory issues, and telecommunications and information technologies.

As, Mr Franklin also worked as a consultant at the World Bank, where he conducted financial analysis of Eastern European Telephone Companies for the World Bank’s Loan Programmes.  Additionally, he was responsible for assisting in the oversight of the Eastern European Telephone Companies’ procurement programmes.

Mr. Franklin holds a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering (cum laude), Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY; a Master of Science Electrical Engineering, Polytechnic University, Brooklyn, NY; and a Master of Business Administration, (International Business) from The American University, Washington, DC.

Cmde. Uday Bhaskar,  Sr. Advisor


Is currently the Director, National Maritime Foundation, New Delhi retired from the Indian Navy in early 2007 after 37 years of service.  He was formerly associated with the Institute for Defense Studies and Analyses (IDSA) from 1990 where he served as the Deputy Director (1996-2004) and later headed the Institute till late 2005. Subsequently he was appointed Member-Secretary of the Government of India Task Force on ‘Global Strategic Developments a report submitted to the Prime Minister of India. Cmde Bhaskar is Editor, Maritime Affairs; and is on the Editorial Board of Contemporary Security Policy. He has edited books on nuclear and international security related issues and has contributed over 60 research articles to journals in India and abroad. He is a guest lecturer at the Indian National Defense College and other military colleges. He is a Life member of the United Service Institute (USI) and is on the Governing Council of the Indian Council of World Affairs (ICWA) and the Research and Information System for Developing Countries (RIS), as also on the Advisory Panel of the India Habitat Centre (IHC) in New Delhi. Cmde Bhaskar is also a columnist for Reuters and the Dainik Jagran.


Eric Ham, Sr. Advisor- National Security
Is the founder of the XII Project. He previously served as the Policy Director for the 3D Security Initiative, an academic project of the Center for Justice and Peace building based in Washington, DC. During his tenure at 3D he led the centers’ Washington office. He oversaw the legislative portfolio and strategically connected the center with key policymakers on both sides of Pennsylvania Avenue. He examined civilian-military capacity and broader issues surrounding the U.S. government inter-agency process. He has co-authored several publications including the Joint Experts’ Statement on Iran and Advancing Peace Mitigating Crisis, a report that offers a comprehensive blueprint for incorporating peace building into U.S. foreign policy. He also created and led the Israeli-Palestinian Congressional Initiative. This signature program brings together Members of Congress and their staff in an effort to educate and create awareness of the complexities surrounding the conflict.

Prior to joining the 3D Security Initiative, Mr. Ham served as director of congressional relations for the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). He created a number of influential programs elevating the debate on U.S. foreign policy within Congress. While at CSIS he elevated the profile of the institution through successful leadership of key programs that included: the Ambassadors’ Roundtable, the Congressional Dialogue Series, the Congressional Forum on Islam and Decision 2008.

Mr. Ham has also served as national security fellow to U.S. Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) where he focused primarily on military operations and defense appropriations. He also worked as a senior policy analyst for TransAfrica Forum for Public Policy focusing on a variety of major policy initiatives such as the Africa Growth Opportunity Act (AGOA) and human rights issues including the illicit conflict diamonds trade and child slavery.

Mr. Ham currently chairs the Security and Development Workgroup for the Society for International Development (SID) where he leads high-level discussions surrounding the Security-Development nexus. He is also a member of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and the Council on Emerging National Security Affairs. He holds a Masters Degree from the University of Chicago and a B.A. from the University of Michigan.


Mariam A. Nawabi, Sr. Advisor


Is an attorney, social entrepreneur, journalist and philanthropist. She previously worked in private practice at Dechert LLP in Washington, D.C. from 1999 until 2003. Her focus was commercial litigation, intellectual property, and international business law. In February 2002, she was selected to serve as a member of the U.N’s Legal Affairs Working Group for Afghanistan. Mariam’s focus was women’s rights in the new constitution and her recommendations led to a stronger equality clause in the new Afghan Constitution.

Mariam is the host of PUL, a television show produced by America Abroad Media that broadcasts weekly in Afghanistan. She is also the host of the Global Challenges Series with the Center for Strategic & International Studies. Mariam is also a Founding Member of the Afghanistan Advocacy Group, a national network that provides recommendations to policymakers regarding development and security in Afghanistan.

Prior to these roles, Mariam served as Senior Advisor to the Afghan-American Chamber of Commerce and Afghanistan International Chamber of Commerce. Her focus was on policy issues and programs affecting private sector and economic development. From January 2004 to January 2006, she worked at the Embassy of Afghanistan, serving as Commercial & Trade Counsel. In that capacity, Mariam worked on policy issues, private sector development, women’s entrepreneurship, reform of commercial laws, and training and capacity building programs.

During her tenure, she established and expanded the first commercial service for Afghanistan in the United States. She organized the first U.S. Business and Trade Mission to Afghanistan, the first Investment Promotion Trip to the U.S. by the Government of Afghanistan, assisted with the first Afghan trade mission to the U.S. with the Afghan-American Chamber of Commerce, led a trade delegation of Afghan women entrepreneurs to the Global Summit of Women in Mexico, and launched a Business Incubator for Afghan Women Entrepreneurs project through the U.S.-Afghan Women’s Council.

Mariam has also taken part in international conferences and speaking engagements on issues related to Afghanistan’s economic development, legal reform, women’s rights, and civil society capacity building. She has participated in numerous international conferences, including a conference sponsored by the governments of the United States, Germany, Great Britain, Afghanistan, German Foreign Office, and the United Nations.

On the policy front, she was involved in recommendations that were utilized by USAID for the continuation of its Economic Governance Program, the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency’s Investment Facility Program, the World Bank’s Private Sector Development Program, and the Overseas Private Investment Agency’s first Middle Market Lending Facility for Afghanistan. She was also actively involved in promoting investment to Afghanistan and market development in Afghanistan. She launched the Afghanistan Business Gateway, an on-line source of information on business and investment in Afghanistan, the Afghanistan Business Dialogue, a series of ongoing seminars with the Afghan-American Chamber of Commerce, and facilitated numerous investments by U.S. companies in Afghanistan. Her work on economic development has been covered by the World Bank and PBS.

Mariam is a graduate of the Georgetown University Law Center (J.D., cum laude 1999), where she served on the editorial board of Law and Policy in International Business and of George Mason University (B.A., International Studies, summa cum laude, 1995), where she was a recipient of the Peat-Marwick, Datatel and John C. Wood scholarships and a White House intern.