President and Executive Director
In January 2022, Paul Turner joined the FFP as the President and Executive Director. Prior to that, he was Chief of Party overseeing a USAID mechanism focusing on Governance and Stabilization in the Middle East and North Africa. Mr. Turner worked closely with FFP as the Technical Director of the USAID Reacting to Early Warning and Response Data (REWARD) project. Over his 25 year career across the national security paradigm, Mr. Turner has worked on more than 90 conflict affected countries and deployed to over 40 countries as a diplomat, activist, academic, researcher, and peacebuilder. While he served his country on every continent during his time at the U.S. Department of State, much of his career has focused on sub-Saharan Africa. During his career, he helped launch the National Defense University’s Center for Complex Operations, the interagency Civilian Response Corps, and the Global Counterterrorism Forum’s International Counterterrorism and Countering Violent Extremism Capacity-Building Clearinghouse Mechanism. In addition, he has worked across the programming cycle and led research to frame the USAID Middle East Bureau’s approach to Positive Youth Development in Conflict Contexts, designed conflict, governance, environmental security, and atrocity assessment tools, and promoted vertical and horizontal integration to advance the inclusion of local voices.
Mr. Turner is a founding member of the Multi-Disciplinary Expert Resource Group on Rehabilitation and Reintegration and serves on the board of directors of Re-imagining New Communities in Kenya, and the Peace-Led Climate Friendly Sustainable Development Forum. He regularly addresses the U.S. Department of State’s International Visitor Leadership Program as an expert on conflict and extremism and supported the U.S. Embassies in Switzerland and Northern Macedonia as a visiting expert in their Countering Violent Extremism Speaker Series. His contributions to the field have been recognized through his selection to join the Center for Strategic and International Studies as a Leadership Fellow, in his Fellowship on Governance and Extremism with the Caux Forum, requests to serve as a keynote speaker to events focused on Religious Tolerance and Regional Peacebuilding and a number of awards from the U.S. government and civil society.
Mr. Turner is a graduate of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and holds a Master’s degree in Peace and Conflict Studies from the UNESCO sponsored European University Centre for Peace Studies. He also completed graduate diplomas or certificates in Mediation and Negotiation at the University of Erasmus, Environmental Science and Policy at the Central European University, and Economic Development and Social Change at University of Cape Town and Health Provision in Conflict Affected Areas at American University. He continues to remain connected to the academy and has led both graduate and undergraduate courses at American University’s School of International Service and the University of Maryland.