Board members in Iceland

Icelandic board members are appointed by the Ministry and U.S. board members by the U.S. Embassy. They serve for a maximum of five consecutive years. The board meets approximately 4-5 times a year.

Members of the Board

Honorary Co-Chairs

Lilja Dögg Alfreðsdóttir

Minister of Education, Science and Research

Jeffrey Ross Gunter

U.S. Ambassador to Iceland

Fulbright Board:

Board Members

Icelandic representatives

Hjálmar W. Hannesson

Chairman of the Board FY2020

Ambassador Hjálmar W. Hannesson received his master’s degree in Political Science from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, where he was a Fulbright fellow in 1966. He has had a long and distinguished career in the Icelandic Foreign Service and served as ambassador to many countries, including the United States from 2009 to 2011. He was Permanent Representative to the UN in New York City from 2003 to 2009.

Hulda Stefánsdóttir


Hulda Stefánsdóttir holds an MFA from the School of Visual Arts in New York. She is a distinguished artist who has had numerous exhibitions in major museums and galleries in Iceland and the US. She was formerly the MA program director and a professor at the Iceland University of the Arts, where she is currently Project Manager for Research.

Hrund Ólöf Andradóttir

Professor of Environmental Engineering

Hrund Ólöf Andradóttir is a professor of Environmental Engineering at the University of Iceland. She received her PhD in Civil and Environmental Engineering from MIT in 2000. She worked for 6 years in management consulting before joining the University of Iceland in 2006. Dr. Andradóttir has contributed to the research fields of sustainable urban drainage, air quality, and physical limnology.

Páll Melsted

Professor in the Faculty of Industrial Engineering

Páll Melsted is a professor in the Faculty of Industrial Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Computer Science at the University of Iceland, where he has worked since 2011. He received his PhD degree in Algorithms, Combinatorics and Optimization from the Department of Mathematical Sciences at Carnegie Mellon University in 2009. In 2014, he received a Fulbright scholar grant to conduct research at the University of California, Berkeley.

Oddur Þór Vilhelmsson

Professor of Biotechnology

Oddur Þór Vilhelmsson (alternate) is a professor of Biotechnology at the Faculty of Natural Resource Science at the University of Akureyri. He has a Ph.D. in Food Science from Pennsylvania State University, where he was a Fulbright fellow in 1996. Oddur completed his doctorate degree in 2000 and was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston from 2000 to 2002. He has been a faculty member at the University of Akureyri since 2004.

Board Members

U.S. representatives

Stacey Katz

Vice-Chairman of the Board FY2020

Stacey Katz has a degree in Applied Economics and Management from Cornell University and an MBA from Reykjavik University. She is a qualified CPA. She has held various executive positions in the private sector and currently works at the Icelandic company Marel as Director of Global Business Services

Oscar Avila

Public Affairs Officer

Oscar Avila is the Public Affairs Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Reykjavik. He has previously served in Taiwan and Costa Rica. Before joining the Foreign Service, he was a foreign correspondent and reporter for the Chicago Tribune and other U.S. newspapers. Oscar earned a B.A. in international politics from George Washington University. Oscar’s wife was a Fulbright grantee in South Korea.

Emily Cintora

Political Officer

Emily Cintora is the Political Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Reykjavik. She previously served in the State Department’s Office of East African Affairs in Washington, and the U.S. Embassies in Paris and Khartoum. Prior to joining the State Department, she worked in Kenya and France. She has an M.A. from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and a B.A. in International Studies from Macalester College

Margaret Cormack

Affiliate professor at the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of Iceland

Margaret Cormack is an affiliate professor at the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of Iceland and a visiting researcher at the Árni Magnusson Institute for Icelandic Studies. She was a professor at the Department of Religious Studies at the College of Charleston from 1995 to 2017 and is currently professor emeritus. She received her PhD. in Medieval Studies from Yale University in 1983. Margaret received a Fulbright U.S. Scholar grant to Iceland in 1994.

Elizabeth Lay

Researcher and PhD student

Elizabeth Lay (alternate) is a researcher and PhD student at the School of Education, University of Iceland, with a focus on immigrant parent involvement. She previously worked as an architect from 2000 to 2010 in Reykjavík and Washington, D.C. She has volunteered for immigrant organizations, served on the Immigrant Council of the Ministry of Welfare, the School Board of the International School of Iceland, and founded Vera Center, an information service for immigrant citizens of Reykjavík.

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