Cholpon Orozobekova, Director
Founder of the Bulan Institute, Cholpon Orozobekova is a journalist and conflict analyst. Cholpon’s analytical articles have appeared in such international publications as The Diplomat, Asia Times and the Jamestown Foundation. Her professional career began as a correspondent for the newspapers Obon and Asaba in 1995 and 1996. She received an MA in International Negotiations and Policy Making from the Geneva Institute of International Relations in addition to an MA in the field of international security from University of Geneva. Cholpon is fluent in French and English.
Asylbek Zhoodonbekov, Consultant-Expert
Asylbek began his professional career working for several years as a teacher in the N. Zhundbaev rural secondary school in the Kochkor district of Kyrgyzstan. After becoming a finalist of the US State Department Junior Faculty Development Program, he studied at the University of Iowa. Asylbek worked as host and producer of the radio program Factors of Success produced by the Zhash Tolkun association at the Kyrgyz Public Radio and Television Corporation, as well as the head of the science department of Shokum magazine. After that he worked as a senior teacher at the Kyrgyz Academy of Education. Currently, he is coordinator of the project “Development Centers for djayloo kinder gardens” for the Roza Otunbayeva`s Initiatives International Public Fund. Asylbek Zhoondonbekov is the holder of certificates from USAID, PIKS projects, and is a trainer and expert in the field of education.
Nazgul Kalmambetova, Media Coordinator
Nazgul Kalmambetova graduated from the Faculty of Journalism of the J. Balasagyn Kyrgyz State National University. She began to work as an operator in the newspaper Bishkek Shamy; after that, she worked in the library of K. Bayalinova from 1994 to 1995. Later she held posts as a correspondent, editor-in-chief, and head editor-in-chief of the newspaper Adabiy Gesit. From 2008 to 2016 she worked as a correspondent and editor-in-chief of Agym and Zhangy Agym newspapers. Nazgul is the author of several books.
Khalida Nurmetova, Central Asia Program Officer and Editor of the English Language website
Khalida Nurmetova is a current Ph.D. candidate researching law and gender issues at Freie Universität Berlin. Her primary academic and research interests include law, religion, and culture as well as their influence on gender and security issues. She regularly works on topics concerning the consequences of the collapse of the Soviet Union and the effect of ongoing conflicts, neo-traditional, and neo-religious tendencies on human rights in the region. Khalida received her degree in International Law from Baku State University in addition to an LLM in German Law from the Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg.
Zhyldyz Sultanbekova, Project Officer for “Religion and the State”
Zhyldyz graduated from the Faculty of Law of the Kyrgyz-Russian Slavic University. Studying at the university, she began her professional career as a project assistant with the Children in Danger Public Fund. In 2014 she received a Master’s degree from the OSCE Academy in Bishkek in the field of politics and security specializing in Central Asia. In addition to working in non-governmental organizations and teaching at the Kyrgyz State Law Academy, Zhyldyz has experience in developing and conducting trainings. Zhyldyz is fluent in English.
Almaz Tazhybay, Consultant-Expert
Almaz was formerly executive director of the Peremena Public Fund, and also worked as a program assistant in Soros Foundation-Kyrgyzstan education development projects. She has worked as a senior lecturer in the Academy of Management under the President of the Kyrgyz Republic, the Diplomatic Academy under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kyrgyz Republic and the National University. Since 2010, Almaz has been an active member of the Public Council under the Ministry of Education.
Aigul Tokoeva, Research and Reports Coordinator
Aigul Tokoyeva graduated from Bishkek Humanitarian University. She started her professional career as a junior research assistant at the Kyrgyz State Academy of Sciences. Aigul developed her editorial experience at the publishing houses of Zamandash-Press and Evening Bishkek as well as being the chief editor of the national news agency Kabar. From 2000 to 2007, she was a specialist in the USAID program to assist the Supreme Council of Kyrgyzstan, as well as a consultant to the press service of the Supreme Council of Kyrgyzstan. Aigul is the mother of three boys.
Timur Sharapiev, Animation Designer
Timur graduated from the Kyrgyz State University of Construction, Transport and Architecture with a degree in Management. From 2007 to 2009 he worked for the publisher Print House, and from 2010 to 2012 for the newspaper De Facto. He also worked as a designer for the newspaper Asaba between 2013-2014. Timur has recently been creating animated films and has already achieved success in this field.