Board Members
Meet the Team!
Carlo Giacomo Angrisano Girauta

Chairman

Country: Spain

E-Mail: [email protected]

Carlo Giacomo (22) graduated in Law at ESADE Law School in 2019. Since 2017 he is the Vice Secretary General responsible for International Relations of NNGG Spain. He entered this organization in 2012 when he was appointed the Chairman of the NNGG Pupils in Catalonia. In 2016 he was the youngest MP candidate in Barcelona’s constituency. In that campaign, he also assumed a position in the campaigning team of the Interior Minister. He started his activity in EDS in 2016, during the Summer University of Larnaca. During the Malta Council Meeting 2017, he represented NNGG and obtained an almost unanimous vote on NNGG’s full membership. That same year he was elected as Vice-Chairman during the Varna Summer University and re-elected for a second term in 2018 at the Genoa Summer University. As EDS Vice Chairman his was responsible for Latin American relations which he enhanced creating the Caja Política initiative, he was also responsible for the Sino-European relations and established the first Study Mission to China.

Beppe Galea

Secretary General

Country: Malta

E-Mail: [email protected]

Beppe Galea (23) lives in Gozo, Malta and is currently reading for a Master of Science in Strategic Management and Digital Marketing at the University of Malta. He is the Deputy News Manager of Newsbook.com.mt and his first degree is in European Studies. During the past years, he was active in various youth organisations, both in Malta and Gozo. He is the Deputy Secretary General of the National Youth Council of Malta (KNZ) where he was elected on behalf of the National Scout Youth Council representing Scouts from Malta and Gozo. He has been active in Studenti Demokristjani Maltin since 2012 and served as International Officer of the organisation for two years between 2015-2017. His first EDS event was the Winter University of 2016 where he represented SDM at the Council Meeting in Berlin. In 2017 he was elected as Vice Chairman of the European Democrat Students were his main responsibilities where social media and communications. Between 2015 and 2018 he worked as an MEP assistant for two Maltese MEPs both in Brussels and in Malta. In 2017, he was also involved in the organisation of Malta’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union as Liaison Officer.

Ivan Botoucharov

Vice-Chairman

Country: United Kingdom

E-Mail: [email protected]

Ivan is an Executive in Media, Digital Marketing and Public Relations based in London. He has studied in universities in the UK (UEA and LMU) and the USA (UCLA), and holds a full Chartered status from the Institute of Marketing, granted by authority of The Queen’s Privy Council. During and after his studies Ivan co-founded and managed OneEurope, which became Europe’s largest citizens media under his tenure. In the course of his EDS career Ivan has been the Co-Chair of the Policies for Europe working group, a contributor to Bullseye, and the head of the UK delegation at Council Meetings since 2017. Ivan is the Chair of the UK organisation in EDS - the Young Conservative Group for Europe. He also serves as an Executive in YCGE’s parent organisation, which enjoys the support of 70 Conservative Members of Parliament and the House of Lords.

Karlo Kolesar

Vice-Chairman

Country: Croatia

E-Mail: [email protected]

Vasileios Kesidis

Vice-Chairman

Country: Greece

E-Mail: [email protected]

Vasileios S. Kesidis (21) was born and grew up in Ancona, Italy. Holds a degree in Maritime Management & Financial and gained work experience by a worldwide shipping company. Currently is BSc student of Italian Language & Literature at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens and Associate Researcher of the Hellenic Optical Character Recognition Team, a scientific crowdsourcing initiative for the processing and analysis of parliamentary data. Active in politics since 2015 as member of the Social Media Team of the nowadays Hellenic Prime Minister & President of “Nea Demokratia” mr. Kyriakos Mitsotakis. Kesidis has political experience in Universitarian, Municipal, Prefectural and National level and holds key responsibilities but also in the sector of the International Relations as he was participating as the Head of DAP-NDFKʼs delegation in European Democrat Students. In EDS he served as Co-Chair for the Working Group of European Elections 2019 for the Working Year 2018-19 having introduced the role of the European Elections Ambassadors and is also contributing to BullsEye, the only political center-right magazine in Europe. He has now been elected as Vice Chairman of the Official Student Organisation (EDS) of the European Peopleʼs Party in charge of membership applications and social media.

Benjamin Welling

Vice-Chairman

Country: Germany

E-Mail: [email protected]

Boyana Taneva

Vice-Chairwoman

Country: Bulgaria

E-Mail: [email protected]

Boyana Taneva (25) lives in Stara Zagora, Bulgaria. She obtained her Bachelor degree in European law in Aberystwyth University, United Kingdom and her Master’s degree in University of Vienna, Austria. She did an internship in National Custom Duties Agency. Her job in the Agency was dealing with Climate Change Levy, cogeneration of energy and power. The main objective of her work was to assess, collect and account duties and taxes due on imports and cogeneration of energy in the different international projects. She is currently working in the private sector in Bulgaria for company trading with baby products international patent, trademarks and certification. She is also doing a great job participating in different NGO’s dealing with youth policy in Bulgaria. She has been an active member since 2010, working in numerous political campaigns on national level. She is also involved in many international activities. She served as a Co-Chair of the Working Group Policies for Europe during the 2017/2018 working year. She was elected as Vice-Chairwoman of EDS in 2018. Currently, within the EDS Executive Bureau, Boyana is responsible for communication, social media and event reports.

Valentina Podestà

Vice-Chairwoman

Country: Italy

E-Mail: [email protected]

Valentina (24) is a graduating M.Sc. in Environmental and Development Economics, with a major in Global Economic Governance. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Sciences and International Relations, with a dissertation in History of International Relations, the denuclearization of Ukraine. She did an internship at the Centre of Socio-Economic Studies in Rome, during which she carried out OSINT activities for the areas of Russia and Ukraine and wrote for the European Affairs magazine. She is currently working in the ICT sector in Italy, specifically dealing with Big Data and IoT technologies. Valentina has been active in student and youth politics since 2012 and was elected Deputy International Secretary of GDS Italy in 2018. She has been strongly committed in EDS, raising the awareness on gender and equality issues. During 2018/2019 working year, she wrote and presented the motion “Europe fighting violence against women”, approved during the 2018 Summer University Council Meeting in Genova. She also actively collaborated with “BullsEye”, the official EDS magazine, resulting in the publication of an article about sexual harassment in politics and a co-written reportage on Revenge Porn. Valentina has been elected as Vice-Chairwoman during Bucharest Summer University, and now within the bureau is responsible for communication and campaigns.

Benita Czirkl

Vice-Chairman

Country: Hungary

E-Mail: [email protected]

Benita Czirkl (24) lives in Budapest, Hungary and is studying law at Pázmány Péter Catholic University. Before she started law school, she studied Business Informatics at Széchenyi István University in Győr. When she moved to Budapest she was an intern at the Centre for Fundamental Rights where she was researching international topics. She also worked as a personal assistant for a member of parliament at the House of the National Assembly. She is currently working for a Foundation for children with serious diseases. She got interested in politics during high school years, therefore she became a member of Fidelitas in February 2017. She participated in the campaigning work in 2018 during the national election in Hungary, and then in 2019 throughout European elections. Also in 2017, she attended her first EDS Council Meeting in Skopje, Macedonia. Since then, she is an active member of the organization. During the European Democrat Students Summer University in Bucharest, she was elected as Vice-Chairwoman, and now she is responsible for the statutory changes and fundraising.

Thomas Belligh

Vice-Chairman

Country: Belgium

E-Mail: [email protected]

Thomas Belligh (25) was born in Oostende, Belgium and currently lives in Ghent, Belgium. He obtained a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree in Linguistics and Literature, as well as a Bachelor of Law at Ghent University. Currently he is pursuing a PhD in General Linguistics and an additional Bachelor’s degree in Theoretical and Experimental Psychology, also at Ghent University. In addition to his academic interest in the human mind, language and cognition, he has a vivid interest in politics. For the past four years Thomas has been actively involved with the Christian Democrat Students of Belgium, serving two years as a local board member (one year as local vice-president, one year as local president) and two year as Chairman of the organization. In his capacity as Chairman of CDS Belgium Thomas has been actively attending EDS Council Meetings since summer 2017. During the Summer University of 2019 in Bucharest he was elected as Vice-Chairman of the EDS board. As a Vice-Chair Thomas is responsible for the drafting of the conference resolutions, the overseeing of the EDS working groups and for bringing the EDS resolutions and motions to the EPP.

Francesco Sismondini

Executive Officer

Country: Italy

E-Mail: [email protected]

Robert Kiss

Deputy Secretary General

Country: Romania

E-Mail: [email protected]

Robert Kiss (29) was born in Sfantu Gheorghe, Romania. He holds a Bachelor degree in Business & Management from Corvinus University of Budapest. Robert also holds a Masters degree Economy & Tourism and Political Campaign Analysis from Transilvania University Brasov. He is one of the founding members of RMKDM. Robert has been active in youth politics since 2011, and since then he has held several national positions. In 2014, he was elected vice-chairman of RMKDM, and re-elected for a second term in 2016. Robert has been active in EDS since the Council Meeting in Rome in 2014. He was elected as co-chairman for the human rights working group in 2016. Robert was elected Vice-Chairman of EDS in 2017. In 2018 he was re-elected as EDS Vice-Chairman. He is responsible for the Permanent Working Groups and Conference Resolution.

Virgilio Falco

Honorary Chairman

Country: Italy

E-Mail: [email protected]

Virgilio Falco (28), is a Law graduate from the LUMSA University of Rome. He is also President of an EDS member organisation, StudiCentro. He obtained a MicroMaster in Political Science, organised by the University of Oxford and Blavatnik School of Government and a MicroMaster in Humanitarian Law, organized by Harvard University. He served as Deputy Secretary-General and, for two terms, as Vice-Chairman of EDS. Falco also worked at the Chamber of Deputies and an online university. He served as President of the Education Committee of the National Youth Council of Italy, and he writes for several Italian newspapers (Il Foglio, Il Giornale, Formiche) on educational and political matters. He has been audited several times by Parliament and the Ministry of Education on the reforms of school and university. Since the 2011 congress in Marseille, he has been on the staff of the organization of the congresses of the European People's Party. He also carries out volunteering activities at the Basilica of St. John in Lateran, in the Vatican City.