In fact, the number of people who have such in depth experience of Iraq over such a long period number very few globally. Meeting her before the event, it was hard to escape the sense that to her Iraq was not so much a country as a cause, and her enthusiasm was infectious.
Subsequently the organisation has gone from strength to strength and established itself as a vital business conduit for anyone interested in Iraq's development or exploring the growing investment opportunities. The high turnout of Iraqis (most of the attendees at the event) was a clear testament to the strong relevance of the organisation.
This relevance extends from the most grassroots level in Iraq right up to a network of political supporters at the highest level of government both inside and outside Iraq. The diversity of expertise present gave the event the feel of a genuine dialogue rather than a series monologues, sometimes heard at other events.
Equally important, IBBC has been improving the lives of countless thousands of Iraqis through health clinics and schools or more recently through aid to Iraq's 1.5 million refugees, work channelled through the excellent Amar Foundation.Amar also work at university level capacity building and human rights, a spectrum of work which makes them one of the most vital NGOs in Iraq today.