Karen R. Hilliard

Dr. Karen Hilliard
USAID Country Representative

USAID/Moldova welcomed Dr. Karen R. Hilliard to Moldova as the new U.S. Representative in July 2016.  She oversees development activities worth approximately $19 million for FY 2016, including programs designed to support civil society, strengthen rule of law, improve Moldova’s business environment, and foster independent media.  Dr. Hilliard most recently served as Mission Director to Armenia, which under her leadership became a recognized champion of USAID Forward principles.  Innovations led by Dr. Hilliard are particularly notable in the area of Local Solutions, which generate greater impact and value for money, and in the area of Science, Technology, and Partnerships.

A 29-year veteran of the Foreign Service, Dr. Hilliard holds the Senior Foreign Service rank of Minister Counselor.  During her career, she has served as the Acting USAID Representative to Mongolia, Mission Director to Jamaica, and Director of the Office of Strategic Planning and Budgeting for the Agency’s Bureau for Global Health in Washington.  From 2003-2006, Dr. Hilliard was Deputy Regional Director for Ukraine, Moldova and Belarus.  Her previous posts include Haiti, Malawi, Nicaragua, Oman and Egypt. 

Over the course of her Foreign Service career, Dr. Hilliard has managed projects in diverse technical areas including health, population and nutrition, environment, small and micro-enterprise development, education and training, and democracy and govern-ance.  She has extensive strategic and program design experience and served as a subject matter expert on two successive Agency task forces on personnel reform.

Dr. Hilliard holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Northern Illinois University as well as Master’s degrees in Public Administration and Latin American Studies, and a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of New Mexico.  She is a two-time Fulbright Scholar.  Prior to joining the Foreign Service, she was Assistant Professor of Public Administration at Florida State University and Lecturer in Political Science at the University of Arizona.  She has published numerous articles on public administration, personnel management and international development.  She speaks Spanish, French, Portuguese, and Armenian.  Her three children attend school in the United States.  She enjoys travel, cooking, reading, tennis and horseback riding.

Last updated: August 18, 2016

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