Guests & Speakers

YEL provides aspiring leaders with innovative forms of engagement to directly connect with experienced decision makers from all sectors. YEL has a rich history of hosting influential European policy makers, including the Vice President of the European Commission Kristalina Georgieva, the Prime Minister of Belgium Elio Di Rupo, the Deputy Director of the International Organization for Migration HE Ambassador Laura Thompson, the Council of Europe Head of the Brussels Liaison Office HE Ambassador Torbjørn Frøysnes, the Presidents of the European Committee of the Regions Michel Lebrun and Markku Markkula, Members of the European Parliament, or all G20 Sherpas of the European Union since 2012. Please find below a list of guests and speakers YEL had the pleasure to host or connect with during its activities.

Go directly to 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012

Guests and Speakers 2016

Name Background and YEL Event
Ms. Kristalina Georgieva Vice-President and European Commissioner for Budget and Human Resources, European Commission
Keynote speaker at the Closing Ceremony of the Young European Council 2016
Ms. Renate Nikolay Head of Cabinet for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, European Commission
Keynote speaker at the Opening Ceremony of the Young European Council 2016
Mr. Antoine Kasel G20 Sherpa, Cabinet of the President, European Commission
Received the European Union delegation twice in line with the Y20 Summit 2016
Mr. Markku Markkula President, European Committee of the Regions
Keynote speaker at the Opening Ceremony of the Young European Council 2016 and 2015
Ms. Dagmar Schumacher Director, Brussels office of the United Nations Development Fund for Women, United Nations
Keynote speaker at the Closing Ceremony of the Young European Council 2016
Mr. Stephan Raes Head Economic Department, Dutch Permanent Representation to the European Union
Received the European Union delegation in line with the Y20 Summit 2016
Mr. Geran Kaai Head of the Security and Justice Department, Permanent Representation of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to the EU
Keynote speaker at the Opening Ceremony of the Young European Council 2016
Mr. Guy Stessens Head of Unit, Police and Customs Cooperation, Council of the European Union
Guest to the lunch Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016
Ms. Francesca Di Mauro Head of Unit for Central Africa, European Commission – DG DEVCO
Guest to the lunch Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016
Ms. Sonia Wollny Head of the Secretariat of the Conference of President, European Parliament
Guest to the lunch Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016
Ms. Salla Saastamoinen Director of Civil and Commercial Justice, European Commission – DG JUST
Guest to the dinner Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016
Mr. Paul Nemitz Director of fundamental rights and Union Citizenship, European Commission – DG JUST
Guest to the lunch Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016
Mr. Brando Benifei Member, European Parliament
Guest to the dinner Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016
Mr. Massimiliano Paolucci Head of Brussels Office, World Bank
Keynote speaker at the Opening Ceremony of the Young European Council 2016
Mr. Jamie Shea Deputy Assistant Secretary General at North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)
Guest to the lunch Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016
Mr. Dirk Klaasen Trade Counselor, Dutch Permanent Representation to the European Union
Received the European Union delegation in line with the Y20 Summit 2016
Mr. Ryan Heath Senior EU Correspondent and Associate Editor, POLITICO
Guest to the Eat & Meets in Brussels November and 2016
Ms. Katarina Nevedalova Responsible for Cohesion Policy & EU Outermost Regions, Permanent Representation of the Slovak Republic to the EU
Keynote speaker at the Closing Ceremony of the Young European Council 2016
Ms. Jasna Marić Krajačić Press Officer – European Youth Event Unit, European Parliament
Guest to the lunch Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016
Mr. Anis Cassar Press Attaché, Permanent Representation of Malta to the European Union
Guest to the dinner Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016
Mr. Leonardo Quattrucci Policy Assistant to the Head of the EPSC, European Political Strategy Center (EPSC) at European Commission
Received the European Union delegation in line with the Y20 Summit 2016
Mr. Ricardo Borges de Castro Foreign Policy Adviser, European Political Strategy Center (EPSC) at European Commission
Received the European Union delegation in line with the Y20 Summit 2016
Mr. Jan-Martin Frie Policy Analyst (Economics Team), European Political Strategy Center (EPSC) at European Commission
Received the European Union delegation in line with the Y20 Summit 2016
Mr. Jon Nyman Member (with focus on G20 issues) of Commissioner Malmström’s Cabinet for Trade, European Commission
Received the European Union delegation in line with the Y20 Summit 2016
Mr. Luca Rossi Programme Officer, Regional Office for Europe at UNISDR (The United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction), United Nations
Guest to the lunch Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016
Mr. Chris Kendall Political Counsellor for Strategy and Communications, European External Action Service
Guest to the dinner Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016
Mr. François Gorget Policy Advisor for Education, Youth and Sport, French Permanent Representation to the European Union
Received the European Union delegation in line with the Y20 Summit 2016
Mr. Fabian Zuleeg Chief Executive and Chief Economist, European Policy Centre
Guest to the dinner Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016
Ms. Joanna Maycock Secretary General, European Women’s Lobby
Guest to the dinner Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016
Ms. Caroline Hickson Regional Director, International Planned Parenthood Federation European Network
Guest to the dinner Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016
Mr. Fraser Cameron Director, EU Asia Centre
Guest to the dinner Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016
Ms. Judit Tanczos Legal Policy Analyst, Migration Policy Group
Guest to the lunch Eat & Meet Brussels November 2016

Guests and Speakers 2015

Name Background and YEL Event
Mr. Markku Markkula President, European Committee of Regions
Keynote speaker at the Opening Ceremony of the Young European Council 2016 and 2015
HE Mr. Ambassador Torbjørn Frøysnes Head of the Brussels Liaison Office, Council of Europe
Keynote speaker at the Opening Ceremony of the Young European Council 2015
Mr. Henri Malosse (Former) President, European Economic and Social Committee
Keynote speaker at the Opening Ceremony of the Young European Council 2015
HE Ms. Ambassador Laura Thompson Deputy Director, International Organization for Migration
Keynote speaker at the Closing Ceremony of the Young European Council 2015
Mr. Michel Servoz Director General, European Commission, DG for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion
Keynote speaker at the Closing Ceremony of the Young European Council 2015
Mr. Alexandre Paquot Head of Unit, European Commission, DG CLIMA (Monitoring, Reporting & Verification)
Keynote speaker at the Closing Ceremony of the Young European Council 2015
Ms. Jean Lambert Member, European Parliament
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2013, and guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels November 2015
Mr. Ryan Heath Senior EU Correspondent and Associate Editor, POLITICO
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels November 2015
Mr. László Andor (Former) Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, European Commission
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels November 2015
Ms. Iverna McGowan Acting Director, Amnesty International European Institutions Office
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels November 2015
Ms. Ulrike Storost Teamleader, European Commission, youth employment team in the Commission’s DG Employment
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels November 2015
Ms. Kavita Ahluwalia Manager, EU Representative Office at E.On
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels November 2015
Ms. Valeria Ronzitti Secretary General, European Centre of Employers and Enterprises providing Public Services (CEEP)
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels November 2015
Ms. Marie Donnelly Director, European Commission, DG Energy (renewable energy, research and innovation, energy efficiency)
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels November 2015
Ms. Claire Fernandez Deputy Director, European Network Against Racism
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels November 2015
Mr. Rodrigo Ballester Member, European Commission, Cabinet of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels November 2015
Mr. Gabriele Sospiro Director, European Centre for Economics, Policy Analysis and Affairs
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels November 2015
Mr. Fergus Green Policy Analyst & Research Advisor to Professor Stern, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment (London School of Economics and Political Science)
Guest to Eat & Meet London April 2015
Ms. Esther Maughan McLachlan Director of Communications and Networks, Forum for the Future
Guest to Eat & Meet London April 2015
Mr. Orivaldo Barros Director of International Development, BRE Group
Guest to Eat & Meet London April 2015
Mr. Matthew Tod Senior Partner, PricewaterhouseCoopers
Guest to Eat & Meet London April 2015
Mr. Sia Houchangnia Portfolio Analyst, Seedcamp
Guest to Eat & Meet London April 2015
Ms. Maria Åsenius Head of Cabinet of Commissioner Cecilia Malmström, European Commission
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y20 Summit 2015
Mr. Guntram Wolff Director, Bruegel
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y20 Summit 2015
Mr. Richard Szostak G20 Sherpa, Cabinet of the President, European Commission
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y20 Summit 2015
Mr. Jānis Bērziņš Spokesperson, Permanent Representation of Latvia to the European Union
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y20 Summit 2015
Mr. Pekka Hakala Head of Unit, DG External Policies, European Parliament
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y20 Summit 2015
Dr. Wolfgang Merz Head of Division, Europe Department at the German Federal Finance Ministry
Guest to the Eat & Meet Berlin March 2015
Mr. Matthias Wächter Director General, Centre International de Formation Européenne
Guest to the Eat & Meet Berlin March 2015
Mr. Oliver Hänsgen Public Relations Adviser, EU Information Office in Germany
Guest to the Eat & Meet Berlin March 2015
Mr. Dragos C. L. Preda Senior Advisory Consultant, Ministry of Youth and Sports, Romania
Guest to the Eat & Meet Bucharest October 2015
Mr. Radu Magdin Transnational Consultant, Smartlink Communications S.R.L.
Guest to the Eat & Meet Bucharest October 2015
Ms. Corina Murafa Independent Energy Expert, Bucharest, Romania
Guest to the Eat & Meet Bucharest October 2015
Mr. Ciprian Stanescu Global Shaper, World Economic Forum, Bucharest Hub
Guest to the Eat & Meet Bucharest October 2015
Ms. Georgiana Cosoveanu Governmental Affairs Manager, The Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson
Guest to the Eat & Meet Bucharest October 2015
Mr. Klaus Hullmann Administrator, European Committee of the Regions
Speaker at Young European Council 2015
Ms. Adelaide Pinto Directorate-General Communication at the European Commission
Speaker at Young European Council 2015
Mr. Ludo Tegenbosch Directorate-General Communication (focus on Migration and Home Affairs) at the European Commission
Speaker at Young European Council 2015
Mr. Michal Tratkowski Directorate-General Energy at the European Commission
Speaker at Young European Council 2015

Guests and Speakers 2014

Name Background and YEL Event
Ms. Connie Hedegaard European Commissioner for Climate Action, European Commission
Keynote speaker at the Closing Ceremony of the Young European Council 2014
Mr. Michel Lebrun President, European Committee of the Regions
Keynote speaker at the Opening Ceremony of the Young European Council 2014
Dr. Colette Maloney Head of Unit Smart Cities and Sustainability unit, European Commission, DG Communications Networks, Content and Technology
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels October 2014
Ms. Magdalena Kopczynska Head of Maritime Transport and Logistics Unit, European Commission, DG MOVE
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels October 2014
Mr. Theo Thomas Lead Economist in the Macro & Fiscal Management Unit, World Bank
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels October 2014
Ms. Cheryl D. Miller Founder and Executive Director, Digital Leadership Institute
Keynote speaker at the Closing Ceremony of the Young European Council 2014
Mr. Matt Dann Secretary General, Bruegel
Keynote speaker at the Closing Ceremony of the Young European Council 2014, and received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2013
Ms. Alicia Gómez Campos Projects Officer/Membership Outreach and Events Officer, CECODHAS Housing Europe
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels October 2014
Mr. Wolfgang Martin Rudischhauser Chair of the Working Party on non-proliferation (CONOP), European External Action Service
Received the YEL delegation at the Nuclear Knowledge Summit 2014
Mr. Greg Austin Professorial Fellow and former Vice President, EastWest Institute
Received the YEL delegation at the Nuclear Knowledge Summit 2014
Mr. Karl Friedrich Falkenberg Director General, DG Environment, European Commission
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels March 2014
Dr. Nicu Popescu Senior Analyst, European Union Institute for Security Studies
Guest to the Youth European Leadership Workshop 2014
Dr. Patryk Pawlak Senior Analyst, European Union Institute for Security Studies
Guest to the Youth European Leadership Workshop 2014
Mr. Colin Scicluna Cabinet of the High Representative / Vice President of the European Commission Catherine Ashton, European Commission
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels March 2014
Ms. Josephine Wood Member of Cabinet for Digital Agenda, European Commission
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels October 2014
Dr. Carl-Christian Buhr Member of Cabinet for Digital Agenda, European Commission
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels October 2014
Mr. Martijn Hendriksen Member of Cabinet for Industry and Entrepreneurship, European Commission
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels October 2014
Mr. Ilias Iakovidis Deputy Head of the ICT for Health unit, European Commission
Guest to the Eat & Meet October 2014 Brussels
Ms. Valerie Kinoo Board of Directors, , Digital Leadership Institute International
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels October 2014
Ms. Sigrid Johannisse Member of Cabinet for Digital Agenda, European Commission, European Commission
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels October 2014
Mr. Joe McNamee Executive Director, European Digital Rights
Guest to the Eat & Meet October 2014 Brussels
Mr. Sébastien Brabant Deputy Spokesperson of HR/VP Catherine Ashton, European Commission
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels March 2014
Mr. Daniel Giorev Special assistant and Member of the Cabinet of Commissioner Kristalina Georgieva, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response, European Commission
Guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels March 2014
Mr. Florian Köbele Sherpa Assistant, European Commission
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2012, 2013, 2014, and keynote speaker at the European Council Forum 2014
Dr. Pierpaolo Settembri Sherpa Assistant, European Commission
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2014, and keynote speaker at the European Council Forum 2013, 2014
Ms. Pia Hüttl Research Assistant, Bruegel
Guest to the Youth European Leadership Workshop 2014
Mr. Erik Dale Digital Communications Coordinator, Bruegel
Guest to the Youth European Leadership Workshop 2014

Guests and Speakers 2013

Name Background and YEL Event
Mr. Elio Di Rupo Prime Minister, Kingdom of Belgium
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2013
Mr. António José Cabral G20 Sherpa, Cabinet of the President, European Commission
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2013
Ms. Isabelle Durant Member and Vice President, European Parliament
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2013
Mr. Herwig Kaiser Deputy Head of Cabinet of President Martin Schulz, European Parliament
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2013
Ms. Jean Lambert Member, European Parliament
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2013, and guest to the Eat & Meet Brussels November 2015
Mr. Adrian Kendry Chief Economist, North Atlantic Treaty Organization
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2013
Mr. Matt Dann Secretary General, Bruegel
Keynote speaker at the Closing Ceremony of the Young European Council 2014, and received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2013
Mr. Arnoldas Pranckevicius Advisers to the President, European Parliament
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2013
Mr. Marc Jütten Advisers to the President, European Parliament
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2013
Mr. Florian Köbele Sherpa Assistant, European Commission
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2012, 2013, 2014, and keynote speaker at the European Council Forum 2014
Dr. Pierpaolo Settembri Sherpa Assistant, European Commission
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2014, and keynote speaker at the European Council Forum 2013, 2014

Guests and Speakers 2012

Name Background and YEL Event
Mr. Florian Köbele Sherpa Assistant, European Commission
Received the European Union delegations in preparation of the Y8 and Y20 Summits 2012, 2013, 2014, and keynote speaker at the European Council Forum 2014