With an “America First” budget outline proposing massive cuts to foreign aid, global health and international medical research collaborations on the table, the Trump administration’s pick for the next head of USAID faces a landscape strewn with unpredictable challenges. With overseas exposure that began with a volunteer stint in Kenya, a term on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and continuing work in global health and governance arenas, former Congressman and former U.S. Ambassador to Tanzania Mark Andrew Green brings a record that offers glimpses of the perspective he will bring to those challenges. In a 2011 response to earlier proposed cuts to USAID here, and a Kaiser Family Foundation discussion of the Obama Administration Global Health Initiative, Green voices support for foreign aid funding and outcomes. Pieces focused on his work offer a glimpse of the thinking behind that support, and the vision he might carry to his next job.
The Tanzanian Ambassador – “Once Africa gets in your blood, it’s not something that goes away,” Green tells the writer of this 2009 piece, toward the end of his service as U.S. Ambassador to Tanzania. From his memory of teaching in a classroom with no electricity and holes in the roof, to thoughts on links between terrorism and the despair that comes with poverty, to his approach to diplomacy and concerns about corruption, the piece showcases approaches shaped by experiences.
More effective foreign assistance can pay real dividends – As managing director of the Malaria No More Policy Center and co-author of this opinion piece, Green makes an argument that continues now, that foreign aid is not only humane, but also keeps the peace and builds economic opportunities.
“This is Africa’s time” – “Africa is rising, and there’s an exciting generation of young leaders in Africa who are creating life-enhancing opportunities for their citizens. We want to be part of that, to provide assistance wherever we can,” Green explained in this 2013 Devex piece, as he assumed leadership of the Seattle-based Initiative for Global Development, adding, “Africa is also our focus because that’s where American businesses want to be.”
Trump’s USAID pick stuck in the mud – So, if the above pieces give an idea of some of the reasons Green is interested in taking charge of the world’s leading global development agency, this piece in Politico just 10 days ago presents a scope of some of the obstacles he will, and perhaps already has, confronted.