Humanity in Action is pleased to introduce the recipients of the 2017 Lantos-Humanity in Action Congressional Fellowship. The 2017 program runs from January 17 through May 26, 2017.
Each year, Humanity in Action and the Lantos Foundation for Human Rights and Justice bring together a small group of outstanding students and young professionals from around the world for a five-month long internship at the office of a United States Representative or a Congressional Committee. Named in memory of the late Congressman Tom Lantos and sponsored by the Lantos Foundation for Human Rights and Justice, the program aims to strengthen ties between emerging European and American human rights leaders and to provide European university students with an inside perspective on the workings of Congress, American government, political parties, minority issues, economic and social developments and human rights issues. Fellows also participate in a weekly seminar series to learn about American political, social, legal, economic, educational, religious, cultural, and human rights issues.
The 2017 Humanity in Action Congressional Fellows:
Poland (Warsaw Fellowship 2007)
Anna is a Polish journalist and human rights project manager. She was a 2013 Fulbright and International Peace Scholarship recipient, which allowed her to complete Master’s degree in Peace and Justice Studies at the University of San Diego, California. While in California, she trained as a mediator in a small claims court. Anna obtained a second Master’s degree in Political Science from the University of Wroclaw, Poland. She has worked as a correspondent with the Azerbaijani Service of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and contributed to various other media outlets. As a freelance journalist, she concentrates on Azerbaijan and conflict reporting. Since 2014, Anna has been working with the Prague- based NGO, People in Need as a South Caucasus Project Manager. Anna is a Russian and Azeri-speaking professional with hands-on experience in the post-Soviet world.
Csaba was born in Debrecen, Hungary. He obtained a Master’s Degree in Law and Political Science and is currently enrolled in a PhD program at the University of Debrecen. His research focus is the interaction of EU and human rights law, and their impact on the European Union’s external relations. Csaba has spent several years in a number of countries, including the United States, Austria and Belgium, where he studied international public law and constitutional law. Csaba is also an active member of a youth service organization that works for the benefit of the local community and promotes international understanding.
Representative Alcee Hastings – FL
Danjel is a journalist and scholar from a Roma community in Korca, Albania. He obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in the French Language, and a Master of Science in Social Work at the University of Tirana. With the support of the Roma association, Disutni Albania, Danjel became a reporter for a Roma news television program. He currently works in the Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth as a Roma Affairs Specialist within the Directorate of Social Inclusion. In this role, he seeks to elevate the concerns and rights of the Roma community. He is passionate about protecting vulnerable groups and promoting social inclusion for marginalized members of society.
Ukraine (Berlin Fellowship 2016)
Representative Josh Gottheimer – NJ
Diana was raised by her Ukrainian-Russian mother and Syrian father in Kyiv, Ukraine. As a law student, she has participated in multiple international law competitions. Together with her colleagues from Poland and the United States, she founded the International Dispute Resolution and Leadership Council, an international youth organization promoting dispute resolution alternatives. Diana spent a semester abroad in Lithuania as a part of her LLM studies on Legal Regulation of Public Administration and Human Rights. Previously, she worked for local government and a law firm that specialized in immigration rights. As a Euromaidan Revolution participant, Diana became interested in reforming Ukraine’s existing government in accordance with international standards, as well as in the ongoing Ukrainian-Russian conflict.
France (Paris Fellowship 2015)
Representative Cheri Bustos – IL
Honorine’s professional experiences are primarily in the fields of diplomacy, higher education and entrepreneurship. Born in France but originally from Cameroon, Honorine is a multi-lingual graduate student who has obtained a dual degree in Spanish and Latin-American Studies, and History from the Sorbonne University in Paris. As an Erasmus student, she studied at the University of Barcelona. Honorine wrote two theses — one on the European strategy towards Latin America since the 1990s, and another on the Euro-Mexican partnership and subsequent impact of Europe’s renewed interest in emerging economies throughout the world.
Scottland (John Lewis Fellowship 2017)
Representative Juan Vargas – CA
Joe attended the University of Glasgow where he pursued an undergraduate degree in History and a Master’s Degree in American Studies. At present, he is completing his Ph.D. in U.S. History, with a focus on exploring the complex realm of domestic politics in the 1980s. He also works as a Teaching Assistant and has spent time at Harvard, Hong Kong University, and the Library of Congress as a visiting researcher. Last year, Joe completed a placement at the Scottish Parliament, where he authored two briefings on emerging national issues and gained insight into the inner workings of the government in Scotland. With his commitment to social justice formed at an early age, Joe continues to advocate on behalf of marginalized communities whenever and wherever he can.
Israel (John Lewis Fellowship 2017)
Senator Brian Schatz – HI
Lian is an Arab-Israeli who grew up in a liberal Muslim family, attended a Christian high school, and has been volunteering at a reform Jewish Educational Center in Haifa. Lian recently obtained her BA in Political Science from the University of Haifa, where she focused on “Policy Entrepreneurs” in the public sector. Over the past two years, she was a part of the Jewish-Arab Community Leadership program, in which she did her utmost to represent the true values of co-existence between Jews and Arabs. As part of her work with “Young Entrepreneurs,” Lian was featured in Forbes’ “30 Under 30,” where she discussed how we can bridge innovation through education. As a Lantos Fellow, Lian hopes to gain hands on policy experience working on social justice and minority rights issues.
The Netherlands (Diplomacy and Diversity Fellowship 2016)
Representative Gregory Meeks – NY
Mike will graduate with an LLM in International Law from the University of Amsterdam in December 2016. As a 2016 Diplomacy & Diversity Fellow with Humanity in Action, he explored diversity issues in a transatlantic context and wrote about the news media’s approach to migration. Previously, Mike was a research associate with the Public International Law & Policy Group, a global pro bono law firm, advising states and non-state actors on issues of international and human rights law. Additionally, he interned with the Netherlands Permanent Representation to the UN at Geneva, where he concurrently worked on the Human Rights Council. Mike holds bachelors’ degrees in both Liberal Arts and Dutch law, and spent a semester abroad at Sciences Po in Paris.