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Jim Hester was appointed the Agency Environmental Coordinator (AEC) in 1992. In this role, he oversees environmental programs, staff, budgets, and Federal regulatory compliance across the Agency. In addition, Hester represents USAID on three White House boards: as Vice Chair of the Enterprise for the Americas Board, and as a member of both the Coral Reef Task Force and the National Invasive Species Council.
Concurrent with his AEC appointment, Hester served as Director of the Environmental Policy Office in USAID’s former Bureau for Program and Policy Coordination and then as Director of the Office of Natural Resources Management in the former Bureau for Economic Growth, Agriculture, and Trade.
From 1982 to 1992, Hester was the Chief of the Environment, Energy, and Science Staff and the Bureau Environmental Officer in USAID’s Bureau for Latin America and the Caribbean, where he led the creation and management of USAID’s innovative portfolio in these sectors. From 1979 through 1982, he was the Deputy Bureau Environmental Officer for West and Central Africa in USAID’s Bureau for Africa.
Before joining USAID, Hester served as a senior environment and water quality planner in the Baltimore County Health Department and as an international environmental planner with the architecture and regional planning firm of Wallace, McHarg, Roberts, and Todd. He was also a founding board member of a non-governmental organization creating a successful K-6 Montessori School, and was a Captain and pilot in command flying search and rescue missions in the US Air Force Auxiliary. Currently, Hester serves pro bono as the chairperson of a city Ethics Commission.
Hester earned his Master’s degree in regional planning with a specialization in environmental planning, science, and law from the University of Pennsylvania, and his Bachelor of Arts with Honors in geology from Franklin and Marshall College. He completed additional post-graduate study at American University in development economics, the Federal Executive Institute, and the U.S. Air Force Air University in executive management and leadership. He is a founding and continuing member of the American Institute of Certified Planners, receiving his certification in 1978.
Last updated: March 15, 2013