USAID is changing its mission statement

The Ronald Reagan Building, which houses the U.S. Agency for International Development. Photo by: Lance Cheung / USDA

The U.S. Agency for International Development is changing its mission statement.

In an announcement to staff sent on Thursday and obtained by Devex, Acting Administrator Wade Warren asked for feedback on draft mission and vision statements USAID’s leadership team has already written. The effort is part of a broader redesign effort that President Donald Trump’s administration has initiated at the State Department and USAID. The new mission statement is meant to “guide and inform State and USAID at the start of a new Administration,” Warren wrote. It is the second rewrite of USAID’s mission and vision statements in less than four years.

“Secretary [of State Rex] Tillerson has asked the State Department and USAID each to take a corporate look at our respective missions and visions of success, and craft revised Mission Statements for our organizations,” Warren wrote in the email.

This is the draft mission statement USAID’s leadership has circulated for feedback through a survey that will remain open until Aug. 11:

“As the U.S. Government's principal leader, coordinator, and provider of international development and humanitarian assistance, USAID advances national security and economic prosperity, while demonstrating American values and goodwill abroad. Our investments save lives, foster inclusive economic growth, reduce poverty, and strengthen democratic governance while helping other countries progress beyond needing our assistance.”

That statement would replace the agency’s current — and much shorter — mission, which former USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah announced in a staff town hall in Jan. 2014, after a lengthy rebranding process.

The current mission states: “We partner to end extreme poverty and promote resilient, democratic societies while advancing our security and prosperity.”

The new draft comes while USAID is still waiting for the U.S. Senate to confirm Trump’s nominee to lead the agency, former congressman Mark Green. Last month Green sailed through a committee hearing, but a Senate vote on his nomination still has not been scheduled.

The team working on the update has also drafted a new “vision of success.” It reads:

“We anticipate, mitigate, and respond to global challenges, standing together with people affected by poverty and disaster. The people we help achieve their own peace and prosperity and create stable institutions that respond to their needs.​ We are recognized as the world's premier development agency. We are highly effective, efficient, accountable, and agile.”

What's the future of U.S. aid and development policy under the Trump administration? Read Devex news and analysis and subscribe to The Development Newswire.

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About the author

  • Igoe michael 1

    Michael Igoe

    Michael Igoe is a Senior Reporter with Devex, based in Washington, D.C. He covers U.S. foreign aid, global health, climate change, and development finance. Prior to joining Devex, Michael researched water management and climate change adaptation in post-Soviet Central Asia, where he also wrote for EurasiaNet. Michael earned his bachelor's degree from Bowdoin College, where he majored in Russian, and his master’s degree from the University of Montana, where he studied international conservation and development.