The following experts – widely recognized in Pakistan and internationally – are august members of the Board of Advisors of Freedom Network.
Mr Khalid Aziz
Khalid Aziz is a former civil servant who has served in the highest position of Chief Secretary of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa [formerly known as North West Frontier Province, NWFP] and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas, FATA. He started his career through the Central Superior Services of Pakistan (CSP) in 1969. He served as Political Agent of Khyber, Orakzai and North Waziristan tribal agencies in FATA. He was also Deputy Commissioner of Mardan and Peshawar – the largest cities of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and later Commissioner of Peshawar, Kohat and Dera Ismail Khan Divisions. He headed the Economic Development Department of NWFP and tribal areas for six years as its longest serving development head as the Additional Chief Secretary and later became Chief Secretary of NWFP & FATA in 1996. He was the Chief Negotiator of NWFP for the successful distribution of the Indus River Water amongst provinces in 1991 from the platform of Indus River System Authority (IRSA). As Chief Secretary, he pioneered adult franchise in FATA for the 1997 general elections. He was also the first Director General of Accountability for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, when the post was created in 1998. He remained Additional Secretary to the Prime Minister of Pakistan for Accountability. Currently, he is Team Leader at Chemonics International and Chairman at Regional Institute of Policy Research & Training (RIPORT), Peshawar, Pakistan. Khalid Aziz also writes for leading Pakistan newspaper Dawn.
Mr Ismail Khan
Born in 1963 in Peshawar, Ismail Khan began his career as a reporter with The News International at its Peshawar Bureau in 1991. He left The News in 2001 to join Daily Dawn as its bureau chief in Peshawar and rose to become its Editor (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa) in 2008. He has worked with various international media outlets including the BBC, VOA, Wall Street Journal, Newsweek and Reuters and is presently working for New York Times reporting on events from the region. He was one of the recipients of the NYT team winning the prestigious Pulitzer Prize in 2009 for its coverage of Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Mr Syed Ali Shah
Syed Ali Shah is a senior journalist covering Pakistan’s Balochistan province for national and international media organizations, including Al-Jazeera and Dawn News TV, since 2000. Currently, he serves Dawn News TV channel as bureau chief in Quetta, capital of Balochistan province. He reports and analyzes events taking place in his province for both national and international organizations. Since Quetta lies close to Pakistan-Afghanistan border he also takes keen interest in happenings across the border. He has vast experience of work in print media also as he launched his journalistic career in October 1999 from Balochistan Times, one of the oldest organizations in Balochistan.
Ms Rukhshanda Naz
Rukhshanda Naz is the torch-bearer of the struggle for women’s rights in Pakistan in general and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Tribal Areas in particular and continues her efforts to get the women their due rights in the male-dominated society in Pakistan. Her vast experience in the development sector and equally important support for press freedom and freedom of expression brought her close to the journalist community and she stood by the journalists whenever the free press in Pakistan was under attack. She served one o f the country’s leading civil society organization for women’s rights, Aurat Foundation, as Resident Director from May 1993-May 2008. She also headed the UN Women in the northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province and Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) from September 2010 to November 2012. Her quest for knowledge does not end with one degree or another as she is doing LLM in Coventry currently.