WILLIAM 'BILL' BOGAARD
Mayor Bill Bogaard was first elected mayor of Pasadena in 1999 and was the City’s first directly elected mayor. He won subsequent elections with overwhelming majorities. In 2011 he ran unopposed. He retired as mayor in 2015 having been the longest serving mayor in Pasadena's history. Prior to being elected mayor he was engaged in private law practice, and then served as Executive Vice President and General Counsel of First Interstate Bancorp. He has taught law at the University of Michigan and USC Law School. The Mayor is a graduate of Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. He received his juris doctorate from the University of Michigan Law School after serving as a U.S. Air Force Captain in Los Angeles and Casablanca, Morocco.
He holds a strong belief in the importance of international dialogue and has supported many of Pasadena’s international programs including the Pasadena Sister Cities Program. He served on the board of directors of the Pasadena Educational Foundation and the Pasadena YMCA, and served as President of the Board of the League of California Cities. In 1997 the City of Pasadena granted him its highest civic recognition, the Arthur Noble Award.
Dr. Amarjit Marwah is known as a generous philanthropist and a respected pillar of the Los Angeles community. He was born in the Punjab region of India, where he lived until coming to the United States in 1950 to study dentistry. He became the first dentist of Indian descent in America. In addition to his community work in the L.A. area, he remains active in his home region, where he endeavors to advance women’s education and rural development. In the 1980s, he co-founded the Bank of Punjab, built on the principles of social justice and community service. Dr. Marwah and his wife have adopted the entire village of Gurudidhabb, equipping the town with running water, paved roads, and a town hall. He is also the founder of the first Sikh temple in California located on Vermont Avenue in Los Angeles.
Dr. Marwah’s commitment to citizen diplomacy is based in part on his own experiences as an immigrant being warmly welcomed when he arrived to the U.S. In addition to hosting ICDLA International Visitors every year, he also hosts the annual Fulbright Luncheon. He has served on the boards of ICDLA and the LA World Affairs Council, chaired the Hollywood Arts Commission and LA/Mumbai Sister Cities, and served as president of the LA Cultural Heritage Commission. Along with numerous other awards Dr. Marwah received the 2006 Outstanding Citizen Diplomat Award from ICDLA.
Sebastian Zacharia served with the United Nations for 26 years in senior diplomatic and executive management assignments world-wide. During his time with the U.N. he worked and lived in four continents and traveled to over 100 countries gaining a global perspective and high level networking with people of diverse interests and expertise. His last position with the U.N. for more than eight years was Director of the Division for Asia Pacific Regional Programs.
After an early retirement from the U.N. he taught a wide spectrum of global issues as Adjunct Professor at USC. He was recommended by the Parent's Association of USC for the best teaching and mentoring award. Until his retirement in 2012, he was the Director of International Studies at Woodbury University and Adjunct Professor for such courses as Modern Middle East, Arab Spring and Social Media, and International Business and Negotiations to name a few. He also conducted a senior-level training workshop in Cairo, Egypt on behalf of the University of California, Irvine in 2001. He is a member of many organizations including the Oxford University Round Table and the United Nations Association for USA, and he was the former Vice Chair for the Los Angeles World Affairs Council.