You have made John F. Kennedy the central theme of your organization, why?
President Kennedy is one of the most revered and admired U.S. Presidents on both sides of the Atlantic. While he is more often remembered for his “ich bin ein Berliner” speech, President Kennedy spoke at the Paulskirche in Frankfurt just the day before his famous Berlin speech, outlining an economic agenda that could be implemented word for word today. In so many respects, President Kennedy offers an extraordinary framework to advance such themes as the trans-Atlantic relationship, entrepreneurship, as well as to reiterate his inspirational challenges to the next generation on service and “new frontiers”.
On June 26th, you have the “New Frontiers Forum” and a gala dinner. Is this the extent of your agenda?
June 26th, the 50th Anniversary of John F. Kennedy in Berlin provides our organization an exceptional opportunity to announce to and engage a significant audience. June 26th, however, is only the beginning of our venture – we plan to hold “New Frontier Fora” on a regular basis; work with our partners to develop entrepreneurial projects such as direct exchanges with the United States; and collaborate on policy, technology-driven issues, as well as academic interests – all with the fundamental themes of entrepreneurship; trans-Atlantic relationships; and the development of the next generation of business leaders.
You are a new organization. How can you manage such diverse programming? How are you funded?
While we are new, the principals managing JFKAF have a combined experience of over 70 years in promoting trans-Atlantic ties – political, economic and commercial. Yet, clearly such an undertaking cannot be accomplished alone. Our business plan is strategic: to collaborate with such institutions as the European School for Management and Technology; the U.S. Embassy; the American Chamber of Commerce; and BDI, to name a few. Additionally, we have already established strategic corporate relationships with over a dozen global firms. Our funding is based on corporate and individual donations, but validated and sustained by shared interests, as well as our flexibility to collaborate on common entrepreneurial and trans-Atlantic projects.
"Today there are no exclusively German problems, or American problems, or even European problems. There are world problems--and our two countries and continents are inextricably bound together in the tasks of peace as well as War."