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February 8, 2013 - Dennis Ross

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A former special assistant to President Obama, Ambassador Dennis Ross is a scholar on the Middle East. He played a key role in shaping U.S. involvement in the Middle East peace process, working as point man in both the George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton administrations. Ambassador Ross is now counselor at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy. He’s written many books on the peace process, most recently Myths, Illusions, and Peace: Finding a New Direction for America in the Middle East.

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The Costa Report - June 1st, 2012 Karl Eikenberry

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Karl Eikenberry was the U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan from May 2009 until July 2011, where he led the civilian surge directed by President Obama to reverse insurgent momentum and set the conditions for transition to full Afghan sovereignty. Before that, he had a 35 year career in the United States Army, retiring in April 2009 with the rank of Lieutenant General. His military operational posts included commander and staff officer with mechanized, light, airborne, and ranger infantry units in the continental U.S., Hawaii, Korea, Italy, and Afghanistan as the Commander of the American-led Coalition forces from 2005-2007. He has served in various policy and political-military positions, including Deputy Chairman of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Military Committee; Director for Strategic Planning and Policy for U.S. Pacific Command; U.S. Security Coordinator and Chief of the Office of Military Cooperation in Kabul, Afghanistan; Assistant Army and later Defense Attaché at the United States Embassy in Beijing, China. He is currently a Distinguished Lecturer at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies at Stanford University.

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The Costa Report - February 3, 2012 Alberto Gonzales

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Alberto Gonzales was the 80th Attorney General of the United States, having been appointed to the post by President George W. Bush in February 2005. He was the first Hispanic to hold that position and is the highest-ranking Hispanic government official ever. In addition, he is the only lawyer in the nation’s history to serve as both the White House Counsel and Attorney General. He is widely considered a key architect of the War on Terror and has been very outspoken on such issues as immigration, the rights of children and fighting against sexual predators. He also served as George W. Bush’s General Counsel while he was Governor of Texas, and subsequently as Secretary of State of Texas, and as a Justice on the Texas Supreme Court. He is currently the Doyle Rogers Distinguished Chair of Law at Belmont University, in Nashville, and has also recently joined the law firm of Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis.

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The Costa Report - January 27, 2012 Bob Woodruff

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Bob Woodruff is an award-winning broadcast journalist for ABC News. He has covered major stories throughout the country and around the world, and was named co-anchor of ABC’s World News Tonight in December 2005. On January 29, 2006, he was seriously injured by a roadside bomb that struck his vehicle near Taji, Iraq. Just 13 months after being wounded, he returned to ABC News with his first on-air report, To Iraq and Back: Bob Woodruff Reports. This prime time documentary chronicled his traumatic brain injury, painstaking recovery, and the plight of thousands of service members returning from Iraq and Afghanistan with similar injuries. He continues to cover this topic and was honored with a Peabody Award in 2008 for his reporting on the subject. In February 2007, Woodruff and his wife Lee published the best-selling memoir In An Instant: A Family’s Journey of Love and Healing, chronicling his injuries in Iraq and how their family persevered through a time of intense trauma and uncertainty. They also established the Bob Woodruff Foundation to help heal the physical and hidden wounds of war by providing resources and support to injured service members, veterans and their families. In July 2008, Woodruff began anchoring Focus Earth, a weekly eco-newscast for Planet Green, Discovery Communications’ 24/7 eco-lifestyle network.

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The Costa Report - January 20, 2012 Peter Diamond

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Peter Diamond is a Nobel Prize winning economist and Institute Professor Emeritus at MIT. He has written on public finance, social insurance, behavioral economics, uncertainty and search theories, and macroeconomics. His books include Saving Social Security: A Balanced Approach (with Peter R. Orszag), Reforming Pensions: Principles and Policy Choices and Pension Reform: A Short Guide (both with Nicholas Barr), and Behavioral Economics and Its Applications (edited with Hannu Vartiainen). His recent report is Pension Reform in China: Issues, Options and Recommendations (with Nicholas Barr). He has been President of the American Economic Association, of the Econometric Society, and of the National Academy of Social Insurance. He was one of the three winners of the 2010 Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel.

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The Costa Report - January 13, 2012 Josef Avesar

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Josef Avesar, an Israeli-born attorney who resides in Southern California, is president of the founding committee of the Israeli Palestinian Confederation. He has conducted numerous symposia on the concept of a confederation between Israelis and Palestinians and has hosted political and civic leaders from around the world in discussions of confederation as a means of resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Peace is his first political book.

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