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UN Across AmericaThe Humpty Dumpty Insitute Brings Delegation of U.N. Ambassadors to Houston, TX

January, 2007

The Humpty Dumpty Institute (HDI) sponsored the visit of two United Nations Ambassadors to Houston, Texas on January 24-26, 2007, as part of its U.N. Across America Program. The delegation was composed of H.E. Mr. Adamantios Vassilakis, Permanent Representative of Greece to the United Nations and H.E. Mr. Andreas Mavroyiannis, Permanent Representative of Cyprus to the United Nations.

The visit fostered discussion on U.N. reform, U.N. development assistance, and U.N. peacekeeping activities. The ambassadors also got a chance to visit the NASA Johnson's Space Center, speak at the Houston Committee on Foreign Relations at the River Oaks Country Club, and toured Houston City Hall. Ambassadors' expressed great interest in participating in future HDI programs and establishing future contacts.

Executive Summary

The Humpty Dumpty Institute (HDI) sponsored the visit of two United Nations Ambassadors to Houston, Texas on January 24-26, 200, as part of its U.N. Across America Program. The delegation was composed of H.E. Mr. Adamantios Vassilakis, Permanent Representative of Greece to the United Nations and H.E. Mr. Andreas Mavroyiannis, Permanent Representative of Cyprus to the United Nations. Mrs. Vassilakis also participated, but at her own personal expense. The visit fostered discussion on U.N. reform, U.N. development assistance, and U.N. peacekeeping activities.

The formal program began on the morning of Thursday, January 25, with a behind-the-scenes, V.I.P. tour of NASA's Johnson Space Center. After an hour discussion with NASA Center Director, Michael Coats, the Ambassadors had the opportunity to meet astronauts in training for the next mission, to visit the control rooms for the space shuttle and the space station, and to crawl into full scale training models of the crafts. After the morning tour we gave the Ambassadors a taste of Texas culture with lunch at an authentic Texas BBQ restaurant. The Ambassadors gave an exclusive interview with the Houston Chronicle following lunch.

Later that evening the Ambassadors were invited to speak at a private event hosted by the Houston Committee on Foreign Relations (HCFR), an organization dedicated to increasing understanding of world affairs and U.S. foreign policy. The event, held at the River Oaks Country Club, gave the Ambassadors an opportunity to share their experiences at the United Nations and discuss issues relevant to their countries. The event included a formal question and answer session with the audience. Over one hundred leaders of the Houston medical, legal, energy, and academic community were in attendance. Many expressed a desire that HDI consider doing additional programs with more ambassadors in Texas.

On Friday, January 26, the Ambassadors were welcomed at Houston's City Hall, where they visited the largest Official City Visitors exhibition in the United States. This was followed by a meeting with Houston Council Member M.J. Khan, Chair of the International Liaison and Protocol Committee of the 14-person City Council. HDI was able to use this opportunity to thank him for the transportation and security which the city of Houston provided for this program at no cost to HDI.

This was the first visit by either Ambassador to Houston; both were extremely appreciative to HDI for organizing the program. Ambassador Vassilakis asked if it would be possible for HDI assist his Mission in developing further contacts on the Hill. Ambassador Mavroyiannis asked if we could work with him in bringing a delegation of business and political leaders to view U.N. operations in Cyprus.

Schedule

Wednesday, January 24
8 pm - Depart New York JFK Airport on Jet Blue Flight # 629
11:25 pm - Arrive Houston Hobby Airport & Transportation to the Omni Hotel
Location: Four Riverway, Houston, TX 77056
Delegation will be greeted in the Hotel Lobby by Joseph Merante and Caroline Gosselin

Thursday, January 25
7 am - Meet at the Hotel's Cafe on the Green for Breakfast

7:45 am - Meet in Hotel Lobby for Transportation

9 - 11:30 am - VIP Tour of the NASA Johnson Space Center and Meeting with Center Director Michael Coats
Location: 1601 NASA Parkway, Houston, TX 77058

9 am - Donna Kitchen and Brian Freedman will greet the delegation at Building 110, Proceed to Building 1, Protocol Office
9:10-9:30 am - Welcome Greeting by Mike Coats, JSC Center Director, Building 1, Room 938A
9:35 am - Proceed to Building 30M
9:40-10:35 am - Mission Control Centers
9:40-9:55 am - Apollo Era Mission Operations Control Room
10-10:15 am - International Space Station Flight Control Room
10:20-10:35 am - Space Shuttle Flight Control Room
10:40 am - Proceed to Building 9N
10:45-11 am - International Space Station Trainers
11:05-11:25 am - Space Shuttle Trainers
11:30 am - Conclusion of Visit, Proceed to Building 110
12:45 - 1:45 pm - Lunch at Goode Company Barbeque Restaurant
Location: 5109 Kirby Drive, Houston, TX 77098

2 - 3 pm
Press Opportunity with the Houston Chronicle
Location: Omni Hotel

3 - 5 pm - Downtime -
5 pm
Meet in Hotel Lobby for Transportation

6:30 - 9 pm
Reception & Dinner Hosted by the Houston Committee on Foreign Relations
Location: Pool Room, River Oaks Country Club, 1600 River Oaks Blvd., Houston, TX 77019

6:30 pm Reception
7 pm - Dinner
8 pm - Panel Discussion/ Q & A

Friday, January 26
Please enjoy the buffet breakfast at your leisure at the hotel's Cafe on the Green using the breakfast vouchers that will be provided to you by HDI staff. The restaurant opens at 6:30 am.

8:15 am - Meet in Hotel Lobby for Transportation

9-10 am - Meeting with Houston Council Member M.J. Khan, Chair of the International Liaison and Protocol Committee
Location: City Hall Visitors' Center, 901 Bagby (@ Walker), Houston, TX 77002

9 am - Delegation will be greeted by Alma Maldonado and shown a short film on the City of Houston in the Visitors' Center

9:20 am Delegation will meet with Mr. M.J. Khan
* The delegation will separate into two groups after this meeting

Group 1

10 am - Transportation to Hobby Airport for Ambassador Mavroyiannis and Joseph Merante

12:05 pm - Depart from Houston Hobby Airport on Jet Blue Flight #622

4:50 pm - Arrive New York JFK Airport

Group 2

10 am - Transportation to Omni Hotel for Ambassador Vassilakis, Mrs. Vassilakis and Caroline Gosselin

- Downtime -
5:10 pm - Ambassador Vassilakis and Mrs. Vassilakis depart from Houston Hobby Airport on Jet Blue Flight # 626

9:45 pm - Arrive New York JFK Airport


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Participants List

UN Diplomats

H.E. Mr. Adamantios Th. Vassilakis, Permanent Representative of Greece to the U.N. and Mrs. Fay Vassilakis

H.E. Mr. Andreas D. Mavroyiannis, Permanent Representative of Cyprus to the UN

NASA Johnson Space Center

Michael Coats, Director

Brian Freedman, Protocol Office

Donna Kitchen, Protocol Office

Houston Chronicle

James Howard Gibbons, Editor / Opinion Pages

Houston Committee on Foreign Relations

William C. Altman, Chairman

Mont P. Hoyt, Secretary-Rapporteur

Warren Schmalenberger, Event Moderator

Office of the Mayor of Houston

M.J. Khan, Houston Council Member and Chair of the International Liaison and Protocol Committee

The Humpty Dumpty Institute

Joseph Merante, Executive Director

Caroline Gosselin, Program Manager

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