CCWA Farewell to Two Amazing Colleagues

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This summer, CCWA will bid farewell to two colleagues: Daniela Milan, CCWA’s Manager of Programming, and Katie Ferman, Senior Program Officer for International Exchanges, are both moving on to a new chapter in their careers. Over the past several years, both Daniela and Katie have tremendously contributed to CCWA in helping grow our reach and impact in our community. As we say goodbyes to our two colleagues, we wanted to celebrate their work, highlight their successes and ask what CCWA means to them.

Katie Ferman, Sr. Program Officer, International Exchanges 

Katie, what does CCWA mean to you?

To me, CCWA means beginnings. On a personal note, CCWA is where I began my career in international relations. For so many people in the Cleveland area, it is the beginning of their passion for international affairs and their inspiration to get more involved and engaged with the rest of the world.

How has your time at CCWA changed you?

Through six years working in international exchanges, I am far more able to see things through other people’s eyes. I can now recognize that my perspective may not be the only valid perspective and challenge myself to be empathetic and consider an issue in a different way. 

What is a highlight of your time at CCWA?

I am the most proud of my role in developing CCWA’s youth engagement initiatives. In 2020, we created and launched the Cleveland LEADS program that prepares young professionals to become more globally competent and engaged leaders. This year, we launched CCWA’s Young Professionals Advisory Committee. I believe these two programs will positively impact CCWA, and the Cleveland community, for years to come.

How has CCWA had an impact on our community?

During my time at CCWA, I have had the privilege of welcoming hundreds of international visitors to Cleveland. Not only has this helped to re-shape and strengthen relations between our community and communities abroad, but it has created a window on the world for hundreds of people in the Cleveland area. Being able to help create these connections was one of the greatest joys of my time at CCWA!

Where are you headed next?

In July, I will be starting at the Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit organization CRDF Global as the Senior Project Lead, DPRK Counterproliferation. I’ll be leading a four-person team to counter North Korean sanction evasion strategies – the ultimate goal being to limit North Korea’s ability to fund their nuclear weapons program. Although I will miss working on citizen diplomacy exchanges, I am excited for a new challenge!


Daniela Milan, Manager of Programming

Daniela, what does CCWA mean to you? 

To me, CCWA is that “home away from home” that can serve as a community and a space where international affairs and interest in the world around us can come to life in Cleveland, Ohio.

What was your favorite thing about working at CCWA?

I’ve said it many times to many people, but my favorite thing about my job with CCWA was working with students from Northeast Ohio and beyond. From workshops at schools to conferences that hosted thousands of students each year, every bright young individual that I got to engage with left me hopeful for the future and grateful for the opportunity to be a part of their education.

What is one thing that you are most proud of for having done at CCWA?

In the summer of 2020, I received news that the Cleveland Metropolitan School District would be implementing our Junior World Affairs Council curriculum guides district-wide. The curriculum guides were a project that I developed and created, and it was special to hear that they would be reaching tens of thousands of students across the district – bringing topics like U.S.-China relations and refugee rights around the world to the forefront of their learning.

How has CCWA had an impact on our community?

CCWA is a symbol of moving Cleveland and Northeast Ohio forward and evolving our city. A truly internationally connected Cleveland will have a positive impact for this city that we love so much. CCWA has a big role in this – from creating good will through our programs to fostering the next generation of globally minded leaders, the Council’s work paves the way for a brighter and more inclusive future.

Where are you headed next?

This fall, I will be joining the Ohio State Moritz College of Law as an incoming law student. I have long considered going to law school and I am so excited to start this new, and very different chapter of life!

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