Sunday Night Keynote
Honorable George J. Mitchell with Alon Sachar
A Brief History of Israeli-Palestinian Negotiations and a Way Forward in the Middle East
George J. Mitchell served as Democratic senator from Maine from 1980 to 1995 and Senate majority leader from 1989 to 1995. He was the primary architect of the 1998 Good Friday Agreement for peace in Northern Ireland, chairman of The Walt Disney Company, U.S. Special Envoy for Middle East Peace, and the author of the Mitchell Report on the use of performance-enhancing drugs in baseball, as well as the book The Negotiator. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1999.
Alon Sachar has worked to advance Middle East peace under two U.S. administrations. He served as an advisor to the U.S. Ambassador to Israel, Daniel B. Shapiro, in Tel Aviv from 2011 to 2012 and to President Obama’s Special Envoys for Middle East Peace, George J. Mitchell and David Hale, from 2009 to 2011. In those capacities, Alon participated in negotiations with Israelis, Palestinians, and Arab States. From 2006 to 2009, he served in the State Department’s Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs, focusing on the U.S. bilateral relationships with Israel and the Palestinians as well as Arab-Israeli relations. Alon has also worked out of the U.S. Consulate in Jerusalem, which serves as the U.S. diplomatic mission to the Palestinians. Today, Alon is a lawyer based in California, where he was born and raised.