Founding Directors

Elena Shtoyunda

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Elena Shtoyunda was born in Russia. She graduated with a Master’s degree from the Moscow State University of Economics, Statistics and Informatics. She did her postgraduate studies in the Institute of Finance and Economics.

She earned her second Master’s degree from the City University of New York with specialization in Urban Politics and Public Management. She also studied courses on financial issues, information technology, and project management in various US institutions.

Elena worked as a civil officer in federal agencies as well as an expert in research institutions and international projects.

Among her areas of interest were social and economic development of territories and regions, and she applied mathematical methods to the research and study of the trends existing in the public realm.

She has had several articles on academic issues published and she continues her writing.

She is intensively involved in various activities on cultural and academic cooperation.


Craig Dixon



Craig Dixon was born in England. After graduation from the London School of Economics he emigrated to the United States. After some years in the travel and auto industries he registered as an investment professional.

During 24 years at Merrill Lynch, Craig Dixon developed stock option programs, managed equity and fixed income portfolios. As Vice President for Merrill Lynch , he also researched public debt opportunities and project financing possibilities worldwide.  He also managed portfolios as Senior Vice President at Aegis Capital Corp.

His extensive volunteer work has included working  on the developing capital markets in Central America and Eastern Europe.  This activity involved writing rules for new exchanges and training staff.

He was a monitor in Africa for the Trickle Up Program that creates micro enterprises throughout the world.  With the International Center of New York and the Big Apple Greeter Program he provides help to visitors and newcomers to the USA.

He has been a lecturer and is a published author.  His fiction includes short stories and a novella.  His travel book describes adventures all over the world.


Many other people have greatly contributed to the project development. That’s why we have been able to start new activities and tackle new challenges.