The Foreign Service Journal, January-February 2022

THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL | JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2022 55 AFSA NEWS On the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the legislation that created the U.S. Agency for International Develop- ment, AFSA President Eric Rubin hosted USAID Admin- istrator Samantha Power to discuss her vision for the agency. Since President John F. Kennedy signed into law the Foreign Assistance Act in 1961, the U.S. and the world are facing new challenges that will shape aid policy and programming, observed Amb. Rubin in opening remarks at the latest Inside Diplomacy event, held virtually on Nov. 4. “[We are] moving away from relentless war and the military tool, which has char- acterized American foreign policy for a long time, toward what President Biden calls relentless diplomacy and development,” Administrator Power noted. “These tools are lower cost, higher impact, and too often underutilized.” She continued: “The president’s decision to elevate USAID to the National Security Council is a reflec- tion of the belief that you have to have the three legs of the stool: defense, diplomacy and development.” The Administrator also outlined the pillars of her reform agenda, which emphasizes making USAID more accessible, more equi- table and more responsive. Accessibility, she said, begins foundationally by recruiting and retaining a workforce that looks like America. Equity will require increased partnering with smaller, more localized organizations, which may lack the infrastructure to manage the regulatory and fiduciary requirements of a USAID contract, to ensure they can benefit from foreign assistance. Responsive- ness means listening to the countries with which we work to tackle the key challenges of our time and helping them develop indigenous capaci- ties for crisis response. To learn more about Administrator Power’s USAID reform agenda, see page 51. Inside Diplomacy is a series of discussions that explore current national security issues as they relate to foreign policy and the profession of the Foreign Service. Members can visit afsa. org/videos to view the con- versation. n Inside Diplomacy Event USAID at 60: Looking Forward AFSA/JULIAWOHLERS USAID Administrator Samantha Power shares her vision for the agency. Diplomats at Work Event A Day in the Life of a Development Professional AFSA hosted Nancy Ostrowski, a USAID Foreign Service officer, for a virtual event on Nov. 18. to discuss the realities of development field work. She began by explaining that international development aims to advance a nation’s capacity systems in areas such as health, education, governance, civil society and the environ- ment. “We’re living in an increasingly interconnected world,” she said. “Strengthening the systems of a country for the long- term raises everyone up.” As for a routine day’s work, Ms. Ostrowski said, “it varies, because each country has different actors and agencies that are present, depending on the country’s development needs.” During her first assignment, she served as a program economist in Moldova, where she designed a program for business development reform. By contrast, at her post in South Sudan, her work focused on building government capacity to manage oil reserves. She and her colleagues left Juba in a C-130 military aircraft when the country descended into civil war. Nancy Ostrowski has been a USAID FSO for eleven years and is currently attending the Dwight D. Eisenhower School for National Security and Resource Strategy at the National Defense University. Her essay “Getting Off the X, ” a personal account of 9/11, appeared in the September 2021 FSJ . Diplomats at Work is a speaker series that tells the stories of the Foreign Service, introducing the important and varied work of diplomats to new audiences as part of AFSA’s out- reach efforts. A recording of this event is available at AFSAtube. n