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Alina L. Romanowski currently serves as Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Middle East Bureau and since March 2013 is fulfilling the duties of the Assistant Administrator until further notice. Ms. Romanowski leads the Bureau, including the efforts of seven USAID missions and development programs in countries without missions such as Libya and Tunisia. She oversees a large and varied portfolio that provides about $1.5 billion annually in assistance across the Middle East region. Ms. Romanowski directs the design and implementation of assistance programs that support the political transitions occurring across the region and co-leads USAID’s humanitarian assistance and development efforts in addressing the crisis in Syria.
Prior to joining USAID in 2011, Ms. Romanowski served at the Department of State in senior positions, including two deputy assistant secretary positions in the Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs where she significantly expanded the Fulbright program, global English language programs, and international high school exchange programs. She also served as acting deputy assistant secretary in the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs. She joined the Department of State in 2003 to establish the Middle East Partnership Initiative Office and serve as its first Director.
Ms. Romanowski served for 14 years at the Defense Department in senior positions involving the Near East and South Asia. She was the founding director of the Near East-South Asia Center for Strategic Studies at the National Defense University; deputy assistant secretary of defense for Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs in the Office of the Secretary of Defense; and country director for Israel. She served for 10 years at the Central Intelligence Agency as an intelligence analyst on the Near East and South Asia region.
Ms. Romanowski received the 2010 Presidential Distinguished Rank Award for Senior Executive Service; the 2008 and 1999 Presidential Meritorious Rank Awards for Senior Executive Service; 2005 Department of State Superior Rank Award; 1997 and 1991 Secretary of Defense Meritorious Civilian Service Awards; and 1991 CIA Exceptional Performance Award.
Ms. Romanowski holds a master’s degree in international relations and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Chicago. She attended Tel Aviv University in Israel. She speaks French and has studied Arabic and Hebrew. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Last updated: October 24, 2013