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Location: Birmingham, MI, United States

Councilman John Akouri, former Washington, DC Press Secretary & Capitol Hill Advisor, is President & CEO of the Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce.

Friday, February 28, 2003

John Akouri to Travel with Diplomatic Delegation to Lebanon


-Washington Advisor to be Member of American Goodwill Mission to Promote International Business Relations and Sister Cities Network-

John Akouri is on the move again. Next month he will join Troy Mayor Matt Pryor and Dearborn Mayor Michael Guido along with a delegation of American officials on a tour of Lebanon. Through Sister Cities International (SCI), both cities share a sister city in Lebanon: Dearborn with Qana, and Troy with Aley. The spring journey will also include a meeting with H.E. Prime Minister Rafik Hariri and select Members of the Lebanese Parliament.

Akouri, a partner in Desert Rose, LLC, a leading multi-media and entertainment venture left his post last year as Press Secretary and Communications Director to US Rep. Joe Knollenberg (R-MI) to run for the Michigan House of Representatives. Since that time he has been a Government Affairs consultant. As spokesman for the Congressman, he worked daily with both the International & National press corps, was chief speech-writer, senior advisor and Producer/Host of the award-winning television program “Window to Washington”. Previously, he worked as a media consultant to Governor John Engler, Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham and as an official photographer for the Bob Dole Campaign.

Named a ‘Rising Star’ by the Observer & Eccentric newspapers, Akouri is continually dedicated to assisting today’s youth. He annually hosts the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Gala Benefit and proudly serves as chairman on the local board of the Miss America Scholarship Pageant Committee. An initial member of the Farmington Public Schools Multi-cultural Multi-racial ad-hoc committee, he was recently presented with the esteemed Rainbow Recognition Award.

As a gesture of humanitarian goodwill, the delegation will present to the cities a gift of wheelchairs from the United States through the US Agency for International Development, an independent federal government agency.

“Lebanon is blessed to have such caring sister cities, and I am honored to visit my ancestral homeland with such distinguished guests,” said Akouri, who is working to secure US Satellite coverage of the trip through LBC Television.

SCI is a citizen diplomacy network creating and strengthening partnerships between U.S. and international communities to increase global cooperation at the local level. SCI works to promote cultural understanding, social development and economic growth. The SCI network represents more than 2,100 communities in 121 countries around the world.

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