George Salem
Strategic Advisor with DLA Piper
Mr. George R. Salem serves as Strategic Advisor with DLA Piper, where he is focused on assisting in the development of DLA Piper's Middle East and US Department of Labor practices. During the course of his career, Mr. Salem has negotiated some of the most significant settlements in the field of labor law. On behalf of various Middle East clients, Mr. Salem headed the legal teams that handled the acquisitions of major assets, including refineries in the Middle East, and has litigated major cases, including the Al-Shifa pharmaceutical plant in Sudan. Salem is listed in Who's Who in America, Who's Who in American Law, Who's Who in American Politics, Who's Who in Finance and Industry, The International Who's Who of Business Lawyers, The International Who's Who of Management Labour and Employment Lawyers, Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, Washington Super Lawyers and Corporate Counsel Super Lawyers, and The Best Lawyers in America. He was named by The National Law Journal as one of the top 26 labor lawyers in the United States. From 1985-89 he served as Solicitor of Labor, the U.S. Department of Labor’s chief legal officer, where he headed a staff of 850 lawyers. He is the first Palestinian Arab American to have been nominated by a President and confirmed by the U.S. Senate. Salem played key roles in the campaigns of Presidents Ronald Reagan, George Bush and George W. Bush. He chairs the Arab American Institute, which he co-founded in 1985, is past chairman of the National Association of Arab Americans and has served on the board of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee. Salem has served on the US Advisory Group on Public Diplomacy in the Arab and Muslim World, which was assembled at the request of Congress to study the State Department’s public diplomacy efforts in these regions. He is a recipient of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, presented annually to Americans of diverse origins for outstanding contributions to their own ethnic groups and to American society.
Elias F. Aburdene
President, Rock Creek Corporation
Mr. Aburdene is currently the President of Rock Creek Corporation, an investment company. Elias launched his career with Citibank, New York in 1976. He has been in the world of finance and investments for the past 41 years. Elias holds a BA in Economics Cum Laude from the University of Connecticut and a Masters from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University with a specialization in International Economics. He is on the advisory board for the Washington Metro Area of BB&T Bank. Additionally, Elias serves on the Board of Regents of Bethlehem University and the Bethlehem University Endowment (USA) and for the Center for Arab Studies at Georgetown University. Elias is married with three adult children.