Advisory Board Members
Board Chair; President of Ireland (1997-2011)
Mary McAleese served as the eighth president of Ireland from 1997 to 2011. Prior to her distinguished work as a public servant, she held several positions in higher education. McAleese, who was Ireland's second female president and the first born in Northern Ireland, described the theme of her presidency as “Building Bridges,” which was reflected in her efforts towards reconciliation and peace building with Northern Ireland. An award-winning Catholic academic and author, she holds a licentiate and doctorate in Canon law and serves as chancellor of Trinity College Dublin and professor of children, law, and religion at the University of Glasgow.
Senior Attorney, Clark Hill
Adam M. Ansari is a senior attorney in the Tax & Estate Planning group of Clark Hill PLC's Chicago office, where he provides planning advice to individuals, families, business owners, and financial institutions. His practice focuses on private client matters with a particular focus on taxation, estate planning, and the representation of privately held businesses. While his professional experience was instrumental in the planning and formation of the Ansari Institute, his guidance and consultation with his parents, Rafat and Zoreen Ansari, importantly helped solidify the institute’s mission for peace and advancement for the common good of all people.
President of Women's Learning Partnership and Professor, Religion and Development, Vrij Universiteit Amsterdam (The Netherlands); Member, UN Secretary-General, High Level Advisory Board on Effective Multilateralism
Karam is the President of Women's Learning Partnership, a partnership of 20 autonomous women's rights organizations in the Global South that promote women’s leadership and human rights. She is the immediate past Secretary General of Religions for Peace. Karam served nearly two decades in the United Nations (in UNDP and UNFPA), where she coordinated the Arab Human Development Reports, co-founded and Chaired the United Nations Inter-Agency Task Force on Religion - with over 20 UN system bodies - and founded and convened its Multi Faith Advisory Council, as part of the 750 global NGO database she coordinated. Prior to the United Nations, Karam worked internationally with intergovernmental organizations such as the OSCE, the EU, and the International IDEA, in sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East, Europe, and East and Central Asia. She has published widely, and lectured at various universities including West Point Military Academy in the USA. In 2022, she was awarded an honorary Degree by John Cabot University in Rome, Italy. Born in Egypt, Azza is also a citizen of the Netherlands.
Managing Principal, Schlindwein Associates
An alumus of Notre Dame, Tim Schlindwein has more than 50 years of experience in the investment management industry. He serves as Schlindwein Associates’ managing principal, chief investment officer, and chief compliance officer. Prior to forming Schlindwein Associates, LLC in 1995, Schlindwein spent 20 years with the Chicago investment counsel firm of Stein Roe & Farnham, progressing from portfolio manager to chairman and chief executive officer. Over the years, he has traveled to Eastern Europe and China as well as Israel, where he has served on the board of governors for Tel Aviv University and supported research cooperation between the university and Notre Dame International.
Vice President, World Religions and Spirituality, the Fetzer Institute
William Vendley served as the secretary general of Religions for Peace International for 25 years from 1994-2019. He now serves as senior advisor for world religions for the Fetzer Intitute. While at Religions for Peace, Vendley was a member of its World Council, which consists of 60 senior religious leaders from all continents. As secretary general, he coordinated the activities and projects of Religions for Peace’s 90 national and five regional councils. Vendley is a pioneer for the advancement of multi-religious cooperation and an expert in assisting the establishment of multi-religious councils around the world.
Executive Vice President, Enterprise Risk Management, Wells Fargo & Company
Andrea Katter manages enterprise risk and risk governance at Wells Fargo. She has had a long career in the financial services industry, including positions in banking and risk, with postings in Paris, London and Toronto. Katter holds a bachelor’s degree from Wellesley College and a master’s degree in international relations from The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. Her interest in the Keough School, and the Ansari Institute in particular, stems from her interest in international affairs, and a strong sense that much of our international conflict could be mitigated by greater understanding between people of diverse religious beliefs.
Vice President and Financial Advisor, Morgan Stanley
Chuck Katter is vice president and financial advisor with Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, where he has been in practice for 22 years. He graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 1975 and received a master’s degree in business administration at Pennsylvania State University. Prior to opening his practice at Morgan Stanley, Katter held a variety of finance, treasury, pension management, and general management positions with Ford Motor Company and United Technologies Corporation.
Katter is an enthusiastic supporter of the mission of the Keough School and the unique role its graduates can play in global conflict resolution, peacebuilding, and economic development. He is particularly interested in the Ansari Institute and its focus on facilitating the interaction among diverse religious communities. Katter and his wife, Andrea, sponsored an Iraqi student refugee in the US during the Iraq War, and through him have come to understand the devastation that can result from conflict rooted in religious and political divisions.