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Posts Tagged ‘Jack Lew’

Nides Nomination Hearing

Tuesday, November 23rd, 2010
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On Wednesday November 17th, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (SFRC) held a nomination hearing for Jack Lew’s replacement as Deputy Secretary of State – Thomas Nides. In his opening remarks, SFRC Chairman John Kerry (D-MA) underscored the work that will continue as the Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review (QDDR) is rolled out. Ranking Member Richard Lugar (R-IN) pointed out the importance of the position and reminded Nides that the committee has drafted and passed legislation to advance the objective of a balanced foreign policy with the help of Secretary Gates and Secretary Clinton.

During his testimony Nides – who is currently serving as the Chief Operating Officer at Morgan Stanley – used his experience in the private sector to demonstrate he is up for the challenge. After noting that he shares the Secretary’s vision for elevating diplomacy and development, he listed three priorities he will undertake once in office:

  • Build a more operational State Department.
  • Unify civilian forces in USAID. For example, Nides said he will galvanize cross-cutting efforts around a common global health strategy.
  • Implement an agenda of reform and transparency. Nides pointed to the QDDR as an example of how this effort is already underway.


Thomas Nides to State?

Thursday, September 16th, 2010
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Thomas NidesThe latest in a string of suspects to replace Deputy Secretary Jack Lew is Thomas Nides, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Administrative Officer of Morgan Stanley, Washington Post’s Al Kamen and Politico’s Laura Rozen reported this week. Nides is on the short list of Wall Street executives because of close ties formed while working for the Clinton Administration and on Capitol Hill.

From Kamen’s story: “Nides, 49, has moved in and out of Democratic politics and the financial world since 1984. He worked for former House speaker Tom Foley, then as chief of staff to former U.S. trade representative Mickey Kantor in the Clinton administration before moving to Fannie Mae. He managed the 2000 vice presidential campaign of Sen. Joseph Lieberman (I-Conn.), then worked for Credit Suisse First Boston and Burson-Marsteller before heading to Morgan Stanley in 2005.”

Nides’ relationship to John Mack—first at Credit Suisse—allowed him to serve as chief of staff to Mack, directing him through the financial crisis.  Nides is also chairman of the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association, a lobbying group for securities firms, banks and asset managers, though his term is up this year.

Though Nides has met with officials to discuss the position, no firm decisions have been made.  Does Nides’ experience make him suited to fill Lew’s shoes as Deputy Secretary for Management and Resources at State?  Let us know what you think below.

CQ Article Quotes MFAN Co-Chairs, Highlights Hill Aid Reform Leadership

Monday, July 19th, 2010
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Howard Bermanart.kerry.lugar.giA CQ article (full text below) published today, which quotes MFAN Co-Chairs David Beckmann and George Ingram, gives a rundown of how the leadership of Congressional leaders Rep. Howard Berman (D-CA) and Senators John Kerry (D-MA) and Dick Lugar (R-IN) has helped drive unprecedented progress on foreign assistance reform.  The missing ingredient that could push reform efforts over the top, according to the article?  Presidential leadership.

To join MFAN’s effort to urge President Obama to show leadership on foreign assistance reform and strengthen the U.S. commitment to development, please sign our Open Letter to the President, which has already been endorsed by more than 70 organizations and prominent individuals.

July 19, 2010

Backers Say Time Is Ripe For Foreign Aid Overhaul

By Emily Cadei, CQ Staff

The earthquake that slammed Haiti in January also rocked the U.S. Agency for International Development and its brand-new administrator, Rajiv Shah, who were promptly assigned to head up the civilian U.S. response to the disaster. The experience of the next several months afterward was eye-opening and “helped me shape my agenda for reform for the agency writ large,” Shah said in a speech last month.


MFAN Statement: Leaked White House Development Document Has Strong Reform Elements

Tuesday, May 4th, 2010
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Yesterday,’s Josh Rogin published a draft version of the National Security Council’s Presidential Study Directive on Global Development Policy (PSD-7), which is a landmark review of the strategy and structure behind U.S. development and foreign assistance efforts.  Rogin’s article notes that the ambitious recommendations in the document set off one or possibly multiple rounds of dynamic debate in government about who should have authority over U.S. development efforts.  President Obama is said to be awaiting the final report on PSD-7 from the NSC.  See our review of Rogin’s other reporting on development here.

MFAN released the following statement on the publication of the document:

MFAN Statement: Draft National Security Council Development Vision Includes Strong Reform Elements

May 3, 2010 (WASHINGTON)This statement is delivered on behalf of the Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network (MFAN) by Co-Chairs David Beckmann and George Ingram:

The National Security Council (NSC) vision for development that was published in the media today would help to meet President Obama’s campaign pledge to ensure “development is established and endures as a key pillar of U.S. foreign policy,” while making our foreign assistance more effective and accountable.  Enacting the changes recommended in the draft document would allow the U.S. to resume its historic leadership position of providing hope and opportunity for the world’s poorest citizens by strengthening our ability to save lives, empower people to take control of their own destinies, and stabilize communities that are vulnerable to poverty, disease, and extremism.

The most important features of the Presidential Study Directive-7 highlighted in the media report include:

  • Creating and periodically reviewing a National Strategy for Global Development
  • Returning policy, budget, and field authority to USAID
  • Including the USAID Administrator at relevant NSC meetings
  • Convening a Development Policy Committee to coordinate Executive Branch development activities
  • Helping recipient countries assume ownership, responsibility, and accountability on development
  • Bolstering measurement and accountability of U.S. foreign assistance investments and demanding more of both from implementers and recipients
  • Forging a new partnership with Congress on development policy and practice

We believe the document could go further toward ensuring that the discipline of development is strong and distinct, specifically through elaborating in what ways and under what circumstances development and diplomacy need to be integrated and mutually reinforcing versus when development needs to stand alone, and hope the recommendations in the document will be firmly implemented across the U.S. government.  We also urge the Administration to engage with Congressional leaders now to translate this vision into an anticipated update of the antiquated Foreign Assistance Act of 1961.  President Obama’s leadership will be needed on both fronts in order to “reestablish the United States as the global leader on international development.”

MFAN Weighs In: Development Policy Debate Heats Up

Monday, April 26th, 2010
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CORRECTION: An earlier version of this post identified Patrick Cronin as a member of MFAN, which is incorrect.

Last week, the White House’s National Security Council convened its Deputies Committee, a gathering of high-level representatives from all the major agencies in government, to pave the way for the Presidential Study Directive on Global Development Policy (PSD) and the interim findings of the State Department’s Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review (QDDR) to be finalized.  As Foreign Policy’s Josh Rogin reported, key issues have stalled action on the reviews.  MFAN Member Paul O’Brien of Oxfam America was quoted on the importance of development: