Leadership

John Groarke

John Groarke

Mission Director

As Mission Director for USAID/Southern Africa, John Groarke is responsible for all USAID programming in Southern Africa, including bilateral programs in South Africa, Angola, Botswana, Namibia, Lesotho and eSwatini, as well as regional programming. USAID’s programs promote trade and investment, combat gender-based violence, increase basic literacy, improve access to energy, combat wildlife crime, and confront the dual epidemics of HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis.

As the USAID/Pakistan Mission Director from 2015 to 2017, Mr. Groarke led a $2.5 billion program promoting Pakistan’s development and the reconstruction of its conflict-affected border with Afghanistan. From 2013 to 2015, Mr. Groarke served as Mission Director for USAID/Haiti, leading a $2.2 billion program supporting Haiti’s recovery from a devastating earthquake. As Mission Director for USAID/Morocco between 2009 and 2013, Mr. Groarke led a program supporting the Government of Morocco's political and economic reforms during a time of regional transition. In 2010, Mr. Groarke was detailed to Afghanistan to lead USAID’s efforts to implement the U.S. Government’s new counter-insurgency strategy. He previously served as Deputy Mission Director for USAID/Egypt (2006-2009) and for USAID/Iraq (2005-2006). He served as Senior Regional Legal Advisor for Egypt and Iraq (2002-2005) where, in 2003, Mr. Groarke helped open the Agency’s Baghdad mission in the aftermath of Operation Iraqi Freedom; and as a Regional Legal Advisor for various countries while based in Dakar, Senegal (1999-2002) and Dhaka, Bangladesh (1996-1999).

The son of immigrants and a first-generation college student, Mr. Groarke was born and raised in New York City and graduated from one its public high schools. He thereafter obtained a Bachelor’s Degree from New York University, a Master’s Degree from The London School of Economics, and a Juris Doctor Degree from the University of Pennsylvania.

Mr. Groarke is a member of the Senior Foreign Service, class of Career Minister.

 

Rebecca Krzywda

Rebecca Krzywda

Deputy Mission Director

Rebecca O. Krzywda joined USAID/Southern Africa as Deputy Mission Director (Bilateral) in August 2016. 

Prior to arriving in Pretoria, Ms. Krzywda served as the Controller in USAID/Pakistan from 20015 to 2016, and was the Controller of USAID/Serbia from 2011 to 2015.  

Since joining USAID as a Foreign Service officer in 1999, Ms. Krzywda has worked in USAID missions in the Philippines, Nigeria, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Serbia and Pakistan. 

Ms. Krzywda received a Bachelor's degree in Business and a Masters' degree in Accounting from the George Washington University Arts in Washington, DC and is a CPA.  

Natasha de Marcken

Natasha de Marcken

Deputy Mission Director

Natasha de Marcken has been a Foreign Service Officer with USAID since 2000, and joined the USAID/Southern Africa Mission as Deputy Mission Director in August 2018. She previously led USAID education offices in the Democratic Republic of Congo (2016-2018) and Pakistan (2015-2016). From 2012-2015, Ms. de Marcken was the Director of the Office of Education in USAID/Washington’s Bureau for Economic Growth, Education and Environment. In this role, she provided senior leadership to the implementation of USAID’s Education Strategy and the combined efforts of over 180 education professionals in USAID’s Washington bureaus and over 40 field Missions.

Previous assignments include managing USAID education offices in Guinea (2001-2005), Mali (2005-2009), and Uganda (2009-2012). Prior to joining USAID, she was a Peace Corps teacher trainer in Madagascar and a high school teacher in the United States. She is a graduate of Princeton University and holds a Master’s degree from the University of Minnesota in Education Policy and Administration. Ms. de Marcken and her husband, Aaron Sampson, are part of a USAID/Department of State tandem couple and have two school-aged children.

Last updated: August 16, 2018

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