EPD Board of Directors
Seven EPD members sit on the Board of Directors, elected at the Annual General Meeting. The Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy (NIMD) currently holds the Presidency, with the European Centre for Electoral Support in the Vice President position and Club de Madrid holding the Treasurer role.
NIMD – Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy (President), Represented by Hans Bruning
Hans Bruning (1957) has been the Executive Director of the Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy (NIMD) since 2010. He has an extensive track record in development cooperation, civil society, and politics, having been General Secretary of CNV (the National Federation of Christian Trade Unions in the Netherlands), International Director for ICCO Cooperation (an inter-church organization for development cooperation), and Director of the Association of Healthcare Providers for People with Disabilities (VGN). Besides his active duties, Hans is also a board member on several organizations, including Fairfood International, a Dutch NGO focusing on food security and the European Union for Christian Democratic Workers in the Netherlands. Hans holds a law degree from the University of Leiden in the Netherlands, and can speak English, German, and French, as well as his native Dutch.
ECES – European Centre for Electoral Support (Vice President), Represented by Fabio Bargiacchi
Fabio Bargiacchi has been the Executive Director of the European Centre for Electoral Support since 2011 and has worked in the field of electoral support at the international level since 1997. In the period 1997-2004, he held a variety of posts in the field of electoral assistance and observation with the EU, the UN and the OSCE, operating in long-term assignments all over the world. From 2004 to 2006, Fabio worked as Election Specialist at the Directorate for Operations Quality Support of EuropeAid. From January 2007 to December 2010, he served as Coordinator of the Joint EC UNDP Task Force on Electoral Assistance, and, from January 2011 to February 2012, he worked as Chief Technical Advisor for the “Project in Support of the Electoral Cycles for the six Portuguese Speaking Countries in Africa, implemented by UNDP. Fabio is also a training facilitator and, in the last ten years, he has worked on several election-related publications. He graduated in Political Science at the University of Florence and the Université Libre of Brussels and holds a Master of Arts in Society, Science and Technology from the University of Rosklide and the University of Oslo. Fabio speaks Italian, French, English, Portuguese and Spanish.
Club de Madrid (Treasurer), Represented by Ricardo Hidalgo
Ricardo Hidalgo is Chief Financial Officer of the Club of Madrid. Mr. Hidalgo has worked in the private sector and international NGOs, starting his professional career in 1988 in the financial departments of small and medium size industrial firms in the Basque Country. In 1996, he moved to the non profit sector and joined Action Contre la Faim (Action Against Hunger), a French international humanitarian NGO based in Paris, assuming responsibility for financial relations with institutional donors. In 1998 he changed to the sister organization in Spain “Accion contra el Hambre”, first as its administrator for projects in Angola, and then as Chief Financial Officer. Mr. Hidalgo returned to the private sector in 2001, when he joined TRACK, S.A., a consultant firm based in Bilbao (Spain), as head of the strategy and management department. In 2003 he became an associate of TRACK, a position he held until becoming Chief Financial Officer of the Club de Madrid in July 2005. Mr. Hidalgo has a B.A. in Business Administration from the University of Deusto (Bilbao-Spain), and has also completed postgraduate studies at the Universities of Cornell and Colorado. He has been a professor of Business Mathematics at the University of Deusto, and of “Financial aspects of Project cycle management” at the Universities of Deusto and Comillas (Madrid-Spain).
AWEPA – Association of European Parliaments with Africa, Represented by Theo Kralt
Mr. Theo Kralt is the Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) at the Association of European Parliamentarians with Africa (AWEPA), a position he has held since January 2010. His previous roles included Director of Espria, Director of the Board of Directors at the Philadelphia Care Foundation, International Secretary to the CDA Party and Secretary-Coordinator of the Eduardo Frei Foundation and Policy and European Officer at the Dutch Ministry of Welfare, Health and Culture (WVC). Mr. Kralt currently chairs the Board of the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) Alumni Association Netherlands (LAAN) and is Commissioner of the Foundation De Roos-Gesink to support Dutch culture and science. Previous side jobs were vice- chair of the board of Foundation Wilde Geese/IKON and the board of NOVIB. His educational qualifications include a Master of Science (MSc) in Politics of the World Economy from the LSE where he studied as Foreign and Commonwealth Scholar and Award, as well as degrees in Public Administration, Dutch Law and Political Science and International Relations from the University of Leiden. He is fluent in Dutch, English, French and German.
ALDA – European Association for Local Democracy, Represented by Antonella Valmorbida
Antonella Valmorbida is the Secretary General of ALDA, the European Association for Local Democracy. She has a senior experience in promoting local democracy, empowerment of civil society, and good governance in Europe, in the Balkans, in Eastern Europe, and in the Med area. She is Member of the Advisory Board of Urban Foundation for Sustainable Development, Armenia. She has been Chair of the EPAN working group of CONCORD until 2016, Chair of the Committee on Democracy and Civil Society of the Conference of the INGO of the Council of Europe from 2008 to 2011, and she is the coordinator of the subgroup on local government and public administration reform of the Civil Society Forum for Eastern Partnership. She was board Member of CIVICUS – the World Alliance for Citizens Participation. Since 2008, Antonella Valmorbida is Professor of the University of Padua, Italy, in international decentralised cooperation. Antonella Valmorbida is a French and Italian native speaker, and is fluent in English and Russian.
Demo Finland, Represented by Anu Juvonen
Ms Anu Juvonen (MA Development Studies, BA (Hons) Social Anthropology – both from the University of Sussex, UK, as well as studies at University of Helsinki) has worked over 15 years in the field of development policy and international affairs. She has lived and worked long term in Nepal, where she worked in the field of education; in Ethiopia, as an expert in community participation and gender; and recently in Sri Lanka, where she worked as a Head of Good Governance for an international NGO, as well as having made numerous short-term missions to different countries in Africa (Ethiopia, Kenya, Zambia, Tunisia) and Asia (Vietnam, Myanmar, India and Sri Lanka, Nepal). She has worked as a consultant, a civil servant and worked in CSOs, taking varying roles, from CSO coordination related to the EU presidency and the ASEM summit to advocacy and campaigning. She has a very strong background in project management. She has been with Demo Finland for two years, first as a Director of Programmes and (since early 2016) as acting Executive Director. She has held various board positions, from being the vice-chair of an umbrella NGO with 300 members to being a board member of the EPD. She has also written numerous articles and manuals and is very experienced as a facilitator.
People in Need, Represented by Sylva Horakova
Sylva Horakova has eight years of practice with work in non-profit sector including experience of humanitarian and development field work, based mainly in post-Soviet sector (Russia, Georgia, Abkhazia, Moldova) where she was leading development programs focused primarily on support of education, healthcare, livelihoods and empowerment of civil society organisations. She currently works for a Prague based organisation People in Need at the position of Deputy Director in the Center for Human Rights and Democracy. She graduated from University of Thomas Bata in Zlin Czech Republic, Master in Business Economics. Currently she is studying towards MSc in Development Management at the Open University, UK. She speaks Czech (mother tongue), English, Russian and German.