Advisory Council

Chair - Etienne Davignon


Davignon joined the Belgian Foreign Ministry in 1959 and became head of staff of Paul-Henri Spaak, then Minister of Foreign Affairs where he remained until 1965.In 1970, he chaired the committee of experts which produced the Davignon report on foreign policy for Europe and from 1974 to 1977, he then became the first head of the International Energy Agency. Later, he became a member of the European Commission, of which he was vice-president from 1981 till 1985. From 1989 to 2001, he was chairman of the Belgian holding company Société Générale de Belgique. He is now Vice Chairman of Suez subsidiary, Suez-Tractebel.

 Davignon is a crucial member of the Strategic Advisory Panel of The European Business Awards. He is a member of the Cercle Gaulois and a member of the Advisory Board of the Itinera Institute think tank and is also President of the Brussels-based think tank Friends of Europe. On 26 January 2004, Davignon was given the honorary title of Minister of State, giving him a seat on the Crown Council.


Tassilo Metternich-Sándor


Tassilo Metternich-Sándor is the owner of Schloss Grafenegg in Austria and manager of the Grafenegg Estate. Having established Grafenegg as a venue for classical music and exhibitions since the early 1970s, the Metternich family entered into a joint venture with the State of Lower Austria in 2005 to create the Grafenegg Festival, a renowned festival with major international orchestras, including the EUYO, held every summer. Grafenegg has been the principal venue partner of the European Union Youth Orchestra since 2014 and together they present the European Music Campus (EMC). Tassilo Metternich-Sándor is also a Director of the Musikverein in Vienna.


Ilaria Borletti-Buitoni


Ilaria founded the Borletti-Buitoni Trust in 2003 where she still serves as a Trustee; has significant entrepreneurial experience, particularly in England where she lived for nearly ten years, first as an Executive Director of a successful media company and later in advanced technology companies; in 2011 she was appointed President of FAI (the Italian Environment Fund); in 1993 she founded AMREF Italia, an NGO with 25,000 donors which supports medical and educational programs in East Africa; in April 2013 she was elected to the Italian Parliament and subsequently appointed as Under-Secretary for Cultural Heritage.