Asia-Pacific Security Innovation Summit Rotorua, New Zealand 17-18 April 2019


Dr. Anita Abbott, Director, Global Partnership and Development Ltd

Dr Anita Abbott is the Research Director and Chief Consultant of Global Partnership and Development Ltd. She is currently a research fellow at NATO Defence College. She regularly contributes to publications and is invited nationally and internationally for research projects and speaking engagements. Her research areas include sovereignty, transnationalism, international agreements, diplomatic deterrence and cooperative strategy, embedded negotiation and strategy model, hybrid war and nuclear deterrence. Her first book develops education sovereignty model in international negotiation. In her second book, published by Palgrave MacMillan, she uses Indonesia and several countries as examples of how negotiation works for maintaining sovereignty in education.

Luke Bencie, Managing Director, Security Management International

Luke Bencie is the Managing Director of Security Management International, LLC. In this capacity, he has been a consultant to the US Department of State, US Department of Defense, Fortune 500 companies, as well as foreign governments. He specializes in conducting strategic and security management assessments, performing counterintelligence and due-diligence investigations, and also provides specialized intelligence advisory services. He is the author of Among Enemies: Counter-Espionage for the Business Traveler, Global Security Consulting: How to Build a Thriving International Practice and The Clandestine Consultant: Kings, Sheiks, Warlords and Dictators.

Mr Bencie has worked in more than 100 countries and has trained thousands of domestic and international students from police, military, and intelligence services on such topics as economic and industrial espionage, border security, intellectual property protection, counterfeiting-and-piracy, and recognizing and discouraging terrorist travel movement. Prior to establishing SMI, Mr Bencie was a senior security consultant for Raytheon Company’s Intelligence and Information Systems Division, assigned to the emerging markets of Brazil, India, and Lebanon.

Mr. Bencie previously served on the US Department of State’s Foreign Emergency Support Team. In this capacity, he was responsible for responding to terrorist attacks carried out against US targets overseas. As a result, he performed numerous trips to Iraq, Afghanistan, and other hot spots throughout the world.

Mr. Bencie holds graduate degrees in National Security Studies from The George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs and The American Military University, as well as an MBA from the University of Sarasota. He received his BA from Michigan State University and completed further course work from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s National Training Academy, and the United Nations Institute for Training and Research. 

Tantowi Yahya, Ambassador to New Zealand and Samoa, Ambassador- Designate to the Kingdom of Tonga

The President of Indonesia has assigned Tantowi Yahya to be the extraordinary and plenipotentiary ambassador for New Zealand, Republic of Samoa and Kingdom of Tonga. He presented his credentials to the Governor-General of New Zealand on April 19, 2017 and to the King of Tonga the following week, on April 26, 2017. He is the first Indonesia Ambassador from the creative industry in President Joko Widodo’s administration.

Ambassador Yahya is a two-term member of parliament, popular artist and NGO activist in the field of culture and literacy. In 2009, Ambassador Yahya was elected to the Indonesia House of Representative with 4th national biggest vote number representing his hometown –South Sumatera. During his tenure in the Parliament, Ambassador Yahya was selected to oversee foreign affairs, defence, military, intelligence, media and informatics. As an elected official, he focused on conflict resolution, human rights violation, foreign diplomacy and media empowerment. He also manages to chair several NGOs in creative sector, mainly in music, and television. Graduated from hospitality school, Ambassador Yahya is passionate with tourism and culture as a way to strengthen friendship and diplomacy.

Ambassador Yahya is a member of Golkar party, the oldest and biggest political party in Indonesia. He was the national spokesperson and chairman of art and culture department in the party. He was the chairman of Indonesia Singer, Composer and Musician Association, Indonesia Music Awards Foundation, and president of Country Music Club of Indonesia. He served as Reading Ambassador assigned by The National Library of Indonesia for 4 years. Ambassador Yahya is a fellow of Eisenhower Fellowship and alumni of IDEA-MIT Sloan Program.

Ambassador Yahya is married to Dewi Yahya. They have two boys: Adjani –a soccer player and music enthusiast and Alano – an aspired astronaut. 

Paul Galea, Australian Army

Paul Galea is a senior officer in the Australian Army and is currently appointed as the Army’s Chief Knowledge Officer.  He has served on operations in Kuwait with the US Army, Haiti with the United Nations and in Australia as a member of the Australian Defence Force’s domestic counter terrorism force. He is speaking at the Summit in a personal capacity.

Mr Galea's almost 40-year career is characterized by a broad range of leadership and technically oriented  appointments, both in Australia and internationally, in which he has worked throughout the United States, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. He has delivered a variety of lectures and presentations in New Zealand, South Korea and the United States on subjects as diverse as military leadership, knowledge management, complex change management, and the use of simulation systems to deliver individual and collective training.   He was honoured to be the sole male panel member for the Victorian Government’s 2017 Women in Leadership Conference held in Melbourne, Australia.

Mr Galea holds masters degrees in both defence studies from the University of Canberra and business administration from the University of Southern Queensland.   He also holds a Graduate Diploma of Engineering (Telecommunications System Management) from the Swinburne Institute of Technology and a bachelors degree from the University of New England.   He is married, has two adult sons, and his leisure interests include high-performance cars, gardening, and travelling.

Brig General Insub Shin, Korean Army (Retired), Associate Professor, George Mason University Korea

Brigadier General Insub Shin (Korea Army, retired) is the director of cybersecurity architectures research at the C4I & Cyber Center at George Mason University. General Shin joined GMU in 2016 as a research scholar at the Department of Electric and Computer Engineering after a 30-year military career with significant experience in C4I and Cyber. 

Immediately before his retirement, General Shin served as secretary for cyber security to the President of Korea. He also served as secretary for military science and technology to Korea’s minister of national defence and as director of the R&D Centre at the Korea Cyber Command. 

Dr. Shin received his BS degree in mechanical engineering from the Korea Military Academy (1985), his MS in telecommunications system management from the US Naval Postgraduate School (1990), and his PhD in information technology, with an area of specialization in system architecting, from George Mason University (2001). 

For the past 15 years he has worked in the full spectrum of the cyber security domain, from practice to strategy. His current research interest is a cyber security architecture framework for a conceptual legacy firm, especially applicable for human engaged cyber-physical systems. It may include modelling cyber threats, formalising cyber IPB and BDA processes, organisational strategy, and systemic implementation in order to secure an organisation’s cyberspace with a system of systems.

GPCAPT Verachon Pensri, Professional Instructor Pilot, Flying Training School, Royal Thai Air Force

GPCAPT Verachon Pensri is a scholar and military professional in the fields of air power, strategy and international security, and direct command. His specific area is currently strategy analysis for Thailand's security issues and social development. He has taught in many military educational institutions, including the RTAF Air Command and Staff College, the Royal Thai Air Force Academy, and the Sumaa Language and Culture Institute, focusing on such topics as air power in theory and practice, fundamentals of strategy and international security, strategic culture and strategic analysis of military ethics, revolution in military affairs, military operations other than war, war history, military planning and analysis, the arts of war, international diplomacy and politics, and leadership.

Associate Professor Debin Gao, School of Information Systems, Singapore Management University

Having obtained his PhD degree from Carnegie Mellon University, Debin Gao has focused his research on software and systems security.  In recent years, Dr Gao also actively participates in research into mobile security, cloud security, and human factors in security. He's the recipient of the Lee Kong Chian Fellowship in year 2017.

Dr. Chandra Pandey, Department of Development Studies, School of Arts, Kathmandu University, Nepal

Dr. Chandra Pandey has more than 15 years experience working in qualitative research focusing on non-traditional security issues, including disaster management, environmental affairs, climate adaptation, cyber security, and developmental issues, largely focused in Nepal and South Asia. He has extensive experience in qualitative, action, and traditional research methods, designs, and analysis, participatory planning, project management, and partnership development with government institutions, think-tank organisations, and NGOs. He has worked on several projects that have focused on the interwoven themes of contemporary security issues, disasters, climate change, community development, and post-disaster rehabilitation. His current research projects address ‘Nepal Earthquake 2015: From Rescue to Reconstruction’ and ‘Climate Adaptive Water Management Plans for Cities in South Asia’. His core current research interests centre on public policy and emerging security challenges in the domains of community, environment, and disaster risk.

Dr. Mamadou D. Bah

Dr. Bah is currently serving as Global Partnership and Development’s political and security risk analyst. He is also a research associate at the University of Waikato Islamic Studies Group and a reviewer for the journal Armed Forces & Society (USA). He has worked as a teaching assistant in international relations and security studies at the University of Waikato, teaching courses in ‘International Relations: The Security Agenda’ and ‘Political Systems Around the World’.

He holds a PhD in political science from the University of Waikato, a MPhil in peace and conflict transformation from University of Tromso, Norway, a MSc in development studies from Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Norway, an MA in strategy and diplomacy from National University of Malaysia (UKM), an MA in Islamic thought, and a double BA in political science and Islamic revealed knowledge and heritage from International Islamic University Malaysia.

His research interests include regional security, civil-military relations in transitional societies, contemporary Islamic political thought and civilization, Islam in West Africa, mineral resource policy, identity politics, resilient peace, and conflict transformation. 

Dr Bah’s recent publications on related issues have appeared in the Australasian Review of African Studies (2012), Review of African Political Economy (2014), Armed Forces & Society (2015) and African Identities (2016). He has contributed chapters in Forging Military Identity in Culturally Plural Societies: Quasi-ethnicity, edited by Daniel Zirker (Lexington Press Book, 2015); and African Frontiers: Insurgency, Governance and Peacebuilding in Post-Colonial States, edited by Tanya Lyons and John Idriss Lahai (The Ashgate Plus Series in International Relations and Politics, 2015). 

Barnaby Pace

Barnaby Pace is a trained human factors psychologist and cognitive scientist who holds Masters degrees from the University of Waikato and Massey University. He has 15 years experience in risk management and behavioural analysis, having worked in both the public and private sectors. He is an experienced researcher with more than 40 publications and has been an invited speaker at many international conferences. Most recently Mr Pace presented a workshop at the Australian Enterprise Risk Management of Government Conference on the use of design thinking for risk management framework development.

Dr Simon Gray

Dr Gray  is an International Relations and Security Studies (IRSS) PhD candidate with the Political Science and Public Policy Programme at the University of Waikato, New Zealand and Research Member with the University of Waikato Islamic Studies Group. His research examines contemporary diversity and trends in political Islam with respect to cases in Southeast Asia, sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East. Wider research areas and interests include, Islamic extremism and counter-terrorism, Islam and International Relations, intra-Islamic relations, and Islam in the West. 

He holds a BA Double Major in Political Science & Religious Studies, a Postgraduate Diploma in IRSS and a Master of Arts (Hons) in IRSS. Mr. Gray is also a Visiting Research Associate with the International Centre for Political Violence and Terrorism Research, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore and a Visiting Associate with the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies – Yusof Ishak Institute, Singapore. He is on the board of International Peer-Reviewers for Otoritas: Jurnal Ilmu Pemerintahan (Journal of Governmental Sciences), Muhammadiyah University of Makassar, Indonesia, as well as engaged in wider peer-reviewing on topics related to his research. His work has appeared in New Zealand International Review, African Security and Waikato Islamic Studies Review.  

Mr. Gray has been a research assistant (Summer Research Scholarship) with the University of Waikato's Studies in Religion Programme; as a University of Waikato Political Science IRSS tutor and IRSS postgraduate guest presenter on Militant Islam in Southeast Asia and served as Guest Lecturer on Islamic extremism in Southeast Asia and sub-Saharan Africa for the University of Waikato’s Studies in Religion Programme. He has presented at postgraduate and academic conferences and seminars in New Zealand as well as in Singapore, and has given interviews to newspapers, radio and TV media in New Zealand.

He is also Secretary of the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs Waikato Branch; a Pacific Forum Center for Strategic and International Studies Young Leader and member of the Asia New Zealand Foundation's Leadership Network, representing those two organisations as an observer at the 11th Council for Security Cooperation in the Asia-Pacific (CSCAP) General Conference in Thailand and at Track-II international relations dialogues in Asia respectively. Mr. Gray was also an observer at an international counter-terrorism summit in the Middle East, selected as a New Zealand representative for an international study delegation to Turkey by the Republic of Turkey’s Ministry of Culture and Tourism and Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and a Claude McCarthy Fellow. 

Kendra Leah Roddis, Centre for Defence & Security Studies | Massey University

Kendra Roddis was New Zealand's 2017 Freyberg Defence Scholar, completing her postgraduate research with the Centre for Defence and Security, Massey University.  She has a defence background in the New Zealand Defence Force, having served within the Royal New Zealand Navy as a Navigation and Warfare Officer. 

Her most recent research investigated civil-military coordination within Pacific disaster relief and stemmed from her deployment to Haiti in 2010, where she gained experience in humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, following the country’s 7.0 earthquake. Following her military service Kendra has worked in the humanitarian field, both within Eastern Europe and the Asia-Pacific. Her current research interests include: civil-military relations, contemporary security issues in the Asia-Pacific and resilience within disaster relief.

Dr Joe Burton

Dr Burton is a Senior Lecturer in the Political Science and Public Policy Programme and the New Zealand Institute for Security and Crime Science, University of Waikato, New Zealand.  He has worked at the highest levels of professional politics, as a ministerial advisor in New Zealand and the UK, national campaign coordinator, legislative assistant, researcher, and political organiser.  Joe has a Doctorate in International Relations and a Master of International Studies degree from the University of Otago and an undergraduate degree in International Relations from the University of Wales, Aberystwyth.  Joe teaches course on Cyber Security and Cyber Warfare, International Security, Strategy and Technology, Alliances, International Relations, and American Foreign Policy.  His research focuses on regional responses to global security challenges, the evolving role of NATO and its partners, US foreign and security policy, cyber security, and the impact of science and technology on international security.

Craig Valentine

Craig Valentine, MBA, an award-winning speaker and trainer, has traveled the world helping people get remarkable results through leadership, communications, and change. Known as the Champion of Change, he is a professional speaker and has spoken in the United States, Taiwan, Canada, Jamaica, Qatar (Doha), England, Bahamas, Hong Kong, China, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Australia, India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, South Africa, Japan, and Ireland giving as many as 160 presentations per year.

Craig is the author of the #1 Bestseller, World Class Speaking In Action.

He is also the 1999 World Champion of Public Speaking for Toastmasters International, winning out of more than 25,000 contestants in 14 countries.

He has used his success formulas to:

  • win Salesperson of the Year (3 times) for Glencoe/McGraw-Hill’s Mid-Atlantic Division

  • become an award-winning management trainer for one of the most prestigious and largest seminar companies in the United States (averaging an industry-leading 5.85 on a 6.0 rating scale)

  • produce sales years of 233%, 157%, and 152% of goal for Glencoe/McGraw-Hill

  • sell more than $8 million in educational resources in a single year

  • win the Rising Star salesperson award as a rookie with Glencoe/McGraw-Hill

  • direct a highly-successful employment academy for homeless men in Baltimore City and achieved a 100% job placement rate for the program’s graduates

  • win Events Manager of the Year for the National Small Business Council

  • win a Congressional Achievement Award from the United States Congress for excellence in communications

  • earn the Distinguished Alumni Award from Johns Hopkins University

  • receive hundreds of speaking awards from Toronto to Taipei

  • help the United Way of Central Maryland exceed its $45 million fundraising goal in the year 2000 by training their Loaned Executives to present with influence

Craig is the President of The Communication Factory, LLC, which is an award-winning company that helps people present with impact. A partial list of Craig’s clients include:

  • MIT

  • McDonalds Corporation

  • NASA

  • Social Security Administration

  • Principal Financial Group

  • United Way

  • DuPont Pharmaceuticals

  • Johns Hopkins University

  • Circuit City

  • CareFirst Blue Cross/BlueShield

  • HSBC (Hong Kong)

  • NovoNordisk

  • National Sales Network

  • Rodan & Fields

  • Colorado School of Mines

  • Raytheon

  • The Williams Companies, Inc.

  • TIBCO – Spotfire

  • University of Phoenix (in Columbus, Cleveland and Minnesota, Raleigh)

  • Educational Systems FederalCredit Union

  • Massachusetts Police Institute

  • Texas A&M University

  • And many more


Craig Valentine is the author of the groundbreaking book, The Nuts and Bolts of Public Speaking, Co-Author of the book, World Class Speaking, and contributing author for the books Guerrilla Marketing on the Front Lines,Success Secrets of the Social Media Marketing Superstars, The Speaker’s Edge, and Guerrilla Marketing Remix. He has an MBA from Johns Hopkins University and he is certified as a Co-Active Coach and a Guerrilla Marketing Coach.

Craig is also the Founder and Co-Founder of three successful small businesses that are each highly profitable even in this economy.

Most recently, Craig became the co-author of the #1 bestseller, World Class Speaking In Action.

Group presenter and facilitator

Francis Pauwels

Francis Pauwels is an experienced leader with the demonstrated ability to build teams, think strategically and focus on pragmatically achieving results. He is a senior executive and company director with experience in manufacturing, exporting, tourism, horticulture and local government sectors.   Formal qualifications include a BSc in Biochemistry and MBA from Canterbury University. Francis has broad networks at global levels as well as being connected with the Maori Economy, Government Agencies and Investment entities.

Alessandro Roth

As a volunteer in Education, Research, and Outreach (VERO) at the NATO Defense College’s Research Division, Alessandro Roth has been primarily entrusted with providing administrative and research assistance to the staff and incoming research fellows. Moreover, he has been fortunate to be given the opportunity to write a paper on the historical sources of NATO Counterinsurgency Doctrine (AJP-3.4.4, 2016). His stay at the NDC further allowed him to attend a significant portion of its curriculum in the form of lectures delivered by internationally recognized subject matter experts.

He was born and grew up in Rome to a German father and an Italian mother. Upon completion of his secondary education at the German School of Rome, he began his higher education at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich, Germany, where he graduated with a Bachelor's degree in History and Political Science, followed by a Master's degree in History in 2012 and 2014, respectively. Additionally, in March 2018 he obtained a Master’s degree in International Public Affairs at LUISS Guido Carli University in Rome. This study programme has allowed him to enlarge upon a wide range of aspects relating to international affairs, such as security, trade, and international law.


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