Press Release


For Immediate Release

Contact: Maura Shelden
Open World Leadership Center
Tel. 202-707-6197

Greater Portland - Russian Sister City Project
(The Archangel Committee)
Will Receive the "2013 Open World National Grantee of Merit" Award

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Open World Leadership Center, the Congressional agency working to increase U.S.-Eurasian understanding and partnerships, has named its 2013 National Grantee of Merit award winner. This year’s honoree is the Greater Portland – Russian Sister City Project (The Archangel Committee) of Portland, Maine.

The Archangel Committee has hosted 17 Open World delegations since the beginning of the program in 2000. Their warm, professional hospitality and excellent professional programming have resulted in long term friendships and professional ties with the people and government administration of Arkhangelsk, Russia. The Archangel Committee will host two Open World delegations in 2013 focusing on accountable governance and young women professionals.

Open World’s national grantees are competitively selected non-governmental organizations and non-profits; local hosts provide professional grassroots programming as well as home stays for individual delegates. The work of the national grantees and local hosts are integral to the Open World program.

Open World has introduced more than 18,500 current and future decision makers from Russia and other countries of the former Soviet Union to American political and civic life, and to their American counterparts. Open World delegates range from first-time mayors to veteran journalists, from nonprofit directors to small-business advocates, and from political activists to judges at all levels.

In addition to Russia, Open World also operates dynamic programs in Ukraine, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Serbia, Tajikistan, and Turkmenistan. The U.S. Congress established Open World in 1999 to enhance understanding and capabilities for cooperation between the United States and Russia. In 2003, Congress made all post-Soviet states eligible for the program. Open World promotes partnerships and continued communications between delegates and their American hosts and professional counterparts.

For more information contact Maura Shelden at or visit our website at Follow us on Twitter @OWprogram and Facebook.