New Mission Director for West Bank and Gaza Sworn in

For Immediate Release

Monday, September 16, 2013
USAID Press Office
202-712-4320

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Rajiv Shah, administered the oath of office to Senior Foreign Service Officer R. David Harden as the new USAID Mission Director to West Bank and Gaza.  The USAID West Bank and Gaza Mission manages programs in the areas of democracy and governance; education; health and humanitarian assistance; private enterprise; and water resources and infrastructure.

“Dave’s experience with the agency makes him uniquely qualified to head our Mission in the West Bank and Gaza” said Alina Romanowski, USAID Acting Assistant Administrator for the Middle East.  She added, “As peace negotiations continue we are aware, even more than usual, that this is an exciting and potentially historic time for the Palestinians, the Israelis, and the United States.  USAID is proud to support the negotiation process as the leading provider of bilateral development assistance to the Palestinians.”  

Mr. Harden is a counselor in the Senior Foreign Service and has been with USAID since 1999.  During his tenure he has served in South and Central Asia, West Bank and Gaza, Lebanon, Libya, Iraq, and Washington, D.C.  Mr. Harden established the first USAID presence in Libya and served as the Senior Advisor to the Special Envoy for Middle East Peace.  

Mr. Harden has a J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center, an M.A. in Political Science from Columbia University, and a B.A. in Government from Franklin and Marshall College.  Mr. Harden previously worked as a corporate lawyer and consultant and served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Botswana.  He is a native of Westminster, Maryland.

The United States is the leading provider of bilateral development assistance to the Palestinians, having provided $4.3 billion since 1994 for programs in the areas of democracy and governance; education; health and humanitarian assistance; private enterprise; and water resources and infrastructure.  U.S. foreign assistance is part of the two-track approach to Middle East peace, which couples resumed political negotiations to establish a Palestinian state with support for the Palestinian state-building initiative through U.S. foreign assistance.  USAID’s efforts help to build a more democratic, stable, and secure region, benefiting Palestinians, Israelis, and Americans.

For more information about USAID and its programs in West Bank and Gaza, please visit www.usaid.gov.  

Last updated: September 09, 2014

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