Dr. Kamal Azari
Founder and President
Scholar and entrepreneur Kamal Y. Azari was born in Shiraz, Iran. He did his undergraduate work in Mathematics and Political Science and later graduated from Brooklyn Polytechnics with an MS in Engineering in 1977. He received his Ph.D from Fordham University in comparative politics. He is one of the founding members of the Iranian Studies Association at the University of California, Berkeley and a founding member and former president of the Alliance for Democracy in Iran. He conducted numerous development projects while studying and lectured on political and state developments in the Middle East for more than twenty years. He lives in Sonoma County, California as a vineyard farmer.
Dr. John P. Entelis
John P. Entelis is Professor and Chair of the Department of Political Science and Director of the Middle East Studies Program at Fordham University. He received his PhD from New York University and studied Arabic in Cairo, Harvard, and Princeton. He has been awarded several Fulbright awards including a U.S. Department of Education Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad Fellowship to conduct research in Lebanon, a Senior Fulbright Professorship at the University of Algiers and one at the University of Tunis, and a Fulbright Regional Research Award to Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia. Professor Entelis is the author or co-author of numerous scholarly publications on the comparative and international politics of the Middle East and North Africa including Algeria: The Revolution Institutionalized, Culture and Counterculture in Moroccan Politics, State and Society in Algeria, and Islam, Democracy, and the State in North Africa. Dr. Entelis is president of the American Institute for Maghrib Studies (AIMS) and former editor-in-chief of its scholarly journal, The Journal of North African Studies.
Mr. Fred F. Korangy
Mr. Fred F. Korangy is the Founder, Chief Executive Officer, and Member of the Board of Directors of at New Enterprise East Investments (NEEI). He is also the Chairman, President, Founder, and Chief Executive Officer at BTS Logic Inc. Mr. Korangy acquired BTS in 2002. He is the Chairman, Co-founder, and President at Logic Tree Corp and provides the vision that guides the company’s growth. He founded Logic Tree in 1999 and as the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer; he drove it to more than100% annual revenue growth for most of this decade. Mr. Korangy is a serial entrepreneur and founded or acquired four hi-technology firms and drove these to successful exits as the Chairman and/or Chief Executive Officer since 1989. Between 1981 and 1989, he formed ten partnerships to develop industrial and commercial properties in Maryland, Virginia, and Florida, eventually valued at more than $300 million. Mr. Korangy exited from all ventures successfully prior to the 1989 real estate crash. He has 20 years of creating, growing and selling high technology ventures. He created four technology firms, turned $29 million in funding into enterprise value of more than $137 million, and realized returns of 50% and 5.2 times the invested equity.
Dr. Hamid Najafi
Dr. Hamid Najafi is currently the CTO of Sensoplex, Inc. a company specialized in development of Wearables and IoT products, which he co-founded in 2012. Prior to Sensoplex, he was General Manager of Invensense International and Sr. Director of Applications Engineering at Invensense, a leading silicon Valley manufacturer of MEMS motion sensors.
He co-founded Broadlink Research Inc. in 2005 which developed the first Disney Mobile phone which was marketed by Vodafone in Europe. He also invented the first fully integrated cellular signal repeater for consumer applications. Hamid was the founder of Wireless Link which was a developer of advanced wireless products. The company was sold to CSI Wireless of Canada in 2000 and he served as the CTO of the new entity for 3 years.
Hamid has been active in social causes for most of his life. He served as the first VP of Society of Iranian Professionals in California. He co-founded an NGO to support reinforcement of homes in earthquake prone developing countries. Due to his love of music, he has also supported a number of musicians, as well as other artists, in the developing countries. He has 14 patents and 5 more pending. Hamid received his Ph.D. In Electrical Engineering from Stanford University in 1983, where he did some of the pioneering work in Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) technologies.