Elvin Guri and Michael Hess join the roster of 16 other members of the Board of the non-profit organization dedicated to bringing American higher education to Kosovo.
RIT Kosovo (A.U.K), Kosovo’s private, nonprofit higher education institution which teaches entirely in the English language has added two new members to its Board of Trustees, while two other members ended their term on end of June, 2020. Two new members are Mr. Elvin Guri, an entrepreneur and investor residing in Sofia, Bulgaria, and Mr. Michael Hess, a former military officer and a consultant in Washington D.C., USA.
Guri and Hess join a roster of 16 other members of the Board of the non-profit organization dedicated to bringing American higher education to Kosovo. RIT Kosovo (A.U.K) partners with the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) to offer high-quality American degrees to Kosovo and the larger Balkan region.
Mr. Elvin Guri is an entrepreneur and investor. Currently CEO of Empower Capital Advisors, manager of Empower Capital Fund I, a Jeremie-supported fund investing in Bulgarian lower and mid-market industrial companies. Previously with PwC and EBRD, in 2001-2002 he co-founded JetFinance International, that became the largest consumer finance lender in South East Europe (sold to BNP Paribas Personal Finance in 2007). Among his other recent investments is Telekom Albania, the second largest mobile operator in that country. Mr. Guri has an MBA from the University of Oxford Said Business School. He also supports various educational institutions and initiatives in Bulgaria and Albania. Mr. Guri recently established a family scholarship fund at RIT Kosovo (A.U.K).
Mr. Michael E. Hess has been a principal at M&TCH Consulting since Jan. 2012, after working at L-3 MPRI from August 2009. Before joining MPRI, he served as Assistant Administrator in the Bureau for Democracy Conflict and Humanitarian Assistance, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). Mr. Hess has over 30 years of active and reserve service in the U. S. Military serving in humanitarian operations in Turkey, Iraq, Bosnia and Kosovo. He served in both command and staff assignments in the U.S. and Germany and taught European History at the United States Military Academy (USMA). He was also a banker a Swiss Bank Corp and Citicorp for over fifteen years. Mike has a bachelor's degree from the USMA at West Point, master's degrees from Columbia University, and New York University, and is a graduate of the National Strategic Studies Program at the United States Army War College. For several years, Mr. Hess has been teaching in RIT Kosovo (A.U.K) Summer Program in Peace and Conflict Studies.
On behalf of the faculty, staff, and students, Dr. Kamal Shahrabi, President of RIT Kosovo (A.U.K) extended a warm welcome to the new Board members as they begin their service on the Board. At the same time, he thanked the Mr. Cafo Boga and Mr. Dritan Mezini for their three consecutive terms of service to the board. “We appreciate that they volunteer their time and expertise, and receiving no compensation, to help make RIT Kosovo (A.U.K) an even better institution in the future,” he said.
Mr. Cafo Boga, a prominent New York businessman, banker and accountant, of Albanian descent from Montenegro, has ended his term in the Board on June 30, 2020. Mr. Boga has served as the chair of Finance Committee since he joined the Board in 2012 and as Vice Chair of the Board since 2018. During his tenure, Mr. Boga has traveled regularly from the United States to serve the Board and the committees, providing counsel, professional insight and financial support in student scholarship.
Mr. Dritan Mezini, a well-respected entrepreneur in Albania and Kosovo, a member of the board since 2012, has ended his term on June 30, 2020. Mr. Mezini has served in the Finance Committee and volunteered in several ad-hock committees providing counsel and expertise in enhancing human capital and student life.
For Mr. Boga and Mr. Mezini, the board of RIT Kosovo (A.U.K) unanimously expresses its thanks and appreciation to for their years of dedication, counsel, professional insight and generosity in service to the students, faculty and staff of RIT Kosovo (A.U.K), and thereby to the future of the Republic of Kosovo and the entire region.