Plenary | 4:00 p.m.

Closing Plenary 2018

During the closing session of the IGFUSA 2018, we will highlight key takeaways from the day’s discussion, provide an update on the “IGF-USA On the Road” series, and most importantly remembering the major contributions that Manu Bhardwaj and David Vyorst made to the community.


Romella Janene El Kharzazi


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Romella joined the EEOC in October 2014. Prior to joining the EEOC, she worked for nearly seven years at the Internal Revenue Service, where she held several different positions related to policy and people initiatives. However, the bulk of her time at IRS was in Employment, Talent & Security, where she developed and implemented selection employment systems and evaluated their effectiveness. Before joining the Federal Government, she worked for The City University of New York (CUNY), where she managed the Civil Service recruitment and selection function for the University. Prior to working at the University, she worked at Aon Consulting, now Aon Hewitt, in product development and support; at Aon, she was responsible for the creation of new selection and employee valuation products that were sold to Fortune 500 companies.
Beyond by expertise in employment and selection policy and system design, she has prior organizational research experience. At Aon, she conducted research for the purpose of product innovation and improvement. Romella also worked as a Research Associate at The Research Foundation of CUNY, where her role was to perform research for the purposes of developing employment selection systems. Furthermore, she has prior leadership experience managing interdisciplinary research teams. At the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), she led the Fort Lauderdale/Greensboro Research Group in the Small Business/Self-Employed Division of IRS. In this capacity, she was primarily focused on external, customer-focused research, such as the effectiveness of the IRS’ offer-in-compromise program, how to reduce FTD alerts, and bankruptcy. Finally, she led the Human Capital research and analytics team that was focused on improving the internal operations of the organization.
Since joining EEOC, Romella has served as the technical expert, assisted with expert analysis, or consulted on the following notable cases.
BMW Manufacturing, LLC (Criminal History)
BNSF (Disability Discrimination)
Cintas Corp. (Age Discrimination)
Costco (Harassment/ Disability/ Personality Assessment)
Crothall (Criminal History)
Jet Stream (Religious Discrimination)
Local 580 (Racial Discrimination)
Parker Drilling (Disability Discrimination)
RCH/Luna Gaming (Age and Sex Discrimination)
Seasons 52 (Age Discrimination)
Sterling Jewelers (Sexual Harassment/Unequal Pay)
Texas Roadhouse (Age Discrimination)
Federal Aviation Administration (Sex and Age Discrimination)
U.S. Department of the Navy (Racial Discrimination)
Additionally, Romella served on the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ interagency workgroup to revise the Standard of Occupational Classification (SOC) manual and co-lead a team as part of OMB’s revisions to Directive 15, Standard of Race and Ethnic Standards for Federal Statistics and Administrative Reporting that was tasked into researching the feasibility and utility of creating a new minimum reporting category for Middle Eastern/North African to the current list of ethnic/racial groups. Currently, Romella serves on the EEO Tab and represents EEOC at the Department of State’s Interagency Language Roundtable.
Outside of her day job, Romella’s hobbies have included volunteering to help organize the annual Internet Governance Forum USA Conference for the past two years. This year, she serves in a leadership role, as the Wrangler, providing support to the IGF-USA Co-Chairs. Her other hobbies have included the development of Adult Storytime for Professionals in 2016-2017, which was a book review program, and Culture NOW from 2015-2016, which focused on all aspects of “Culture”. Finally, Romella took a voiceover class at Fairfax Public Access in 2017.

Dustin Phillips

Co-Executive Director, ICANNWiki

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Dustin Phillips is the Co-Executive Director of ICANNWiki, coordinating the bottom-up development of a neutral and accessible resource on ICANN and Internet governance. Additionally, Dustin is the Executive Director of the Greater Washington DC Chapter of the Internet Society (ISOC-DC) and serves on the ICANN Fellowship Selection Committee and usTLD Stakeholder Council.

Nilmini Rubin


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Nilmini Rubin is a vice president at TetraTech. She leads engineering and consulting projects to increase energy and internet access in developing countries. Previously, Nilmini served as the Senior Advisor for Global Economic Competitiveness at the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee where she directed technology, trade, finance and energy policy. On behalf of Chairman Royce, Nilmini spearheaded passage by the House of Representatives the Digital Global Access Policy Act of 2016 to promote internet access in developing countries. She drove unanimous passage of a law to increase access to electricity in Africa that serves as the framework for the United States’ Power Africa initiative. Prior to this position, she advocated on cybersecurity policy for the Information Technology Industry Council, led international economics policy for the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and served as the Director for International Finance at the National Security Council of the White House.

Nilmini’s work has been highlighted in the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Politico, Yahoo! and numerous international publications. She was named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum, a “40 Under 40” Leader in International Development by Devex, and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She was featured on HGTV’s “Curb Appeal” and appeared briefly on Netflix’s “House of Cards”. Nilmini is the mother of three young girls and co-wrote a book with her oldest daughter entitled “How Carrots Became Orange.”

Shane Tews

President at Logan Circle Strategies

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