Yasin Samatar, a Somali native, is a student at the John C. Whitehead School of Diplomacy and International Relations at Seton Hall University in New Jersey. He is actively involved with United Nations groups including the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization, the Office of the High Representative of the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries, Small Island States and the Security Council. He served as a delegate to the historic Dialogue Among Civilizations project at the General Assembly, which included welcoming President Khatami of Iran to Seton Hall University for engagement in an interfaith dialogue.
Passionate about youth issues, Samatar was a youth organizer with the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Society. He is currently the Under Secretary-General for the World Congress of Youth, which encourages young people to get involved with the decision-making mechanisms of the United Nations and other international organizations. Having fled the horrors and calamities of the Siad Barre regime in Somalia, Samatar is also an advocate for democratic transformation in his country of birth.
In recognition of his contributions to refugee issues, Samatar was personally invited by Sadaka Ogata, the former UN High Commissioner for Refugees, to speak on behalf of the world’s youth refugees for the 50th Anniversary of the UNHCR. He has been recognized twice as a United States youth minority leader and, at Seton Hall University, as a Servant Leader Scholar.
Samatar now lives in Seattle with his family and is completing his masters in diplomacy, with a focus on global negotiation and conflict management.