Salam Al- Marayati is president and co-founder of the Muslim Public Affairs Council. He oversees MPAC’s groundbreaking civic engagement, public policy, and advocacy work.
Salam is an expert on Islam in the West, Muslim reform movements, human rights, democracy, national security, and Middle East politics. He has spoken at the White House, Capitol Hill and represented the U.S. at international human rights and religious freedom conferences.
His writings have appeared in major national news publication (including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and Los Angeles Times), and his interviews have been featured on national and international news outlets (including CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, and C-SPAN).

Deputy Chief Michael Downing is the Commanding Officer, Counter-Terrorism & Special Operations Bureau where he leads five operational divisions: Major Crimes,Emergency Services, Metropolitan, Air Support, and Emergency Operations; dealing with intelligence, investigations, tactical response, and emergency preparedness. Deputy Chief Downing is also Chair of the Executive Board of the Los Angeles Joint Regional Intelligence Center (JRIC) and Vice Chair of the United States DOJ Criminal Intelligence Coordinating Council. 

In October 2009, Deputy Chief Downing was appointed as the Interim Police Chief for the Los Angeles Police Department until the permanent Police Chief was appointed in November 2009.  

Deputy Chief Downing has also worked with the Department of Justice and State Department, traveling throughout South America, Africa, Turkey, PolandIndia, and Kenya in an effort to transition large national police organizations into democratic civilian policing models and overlay counter-terrorism enterprises on top of cities.

Consul General Rudi Veestraeten started his diplomatic career in January 1987. He held functions in Niamey (Niger), Sofia (Bulgaria), Bangkok (Thailand), Nairobi (Kenya), Brussels, Washington, D.C. and again Brussels where he served Ambassador at Large for Migration, Mr. Veestraeten was in particular involved in the European migration policy making, with IOM headquarters in Geneva and with the organization of the first and second Global Forum on Migration and Development. 

Mr. Veestraeten was assigned as Ambassador in Bangkok (Thailand) which covers Thailand, Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos. 

Currently, Mr. Veestraeten is Consul General in Los Angeles covering 13 states of the West. His focus is economic and cinematographic diplomacy.

Date: Thursday, March 31, 2016

Time: 6:30 PM

Venue: Pacifica Institute, Los Angeles

8055 W Manchester Ave, Playa del Rey, CA 90293