The Honorable Vivian Lowery Derryck launched Bridges to strengthen African governance and leadership by forging trade and social development links between Africa and the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India and China), the United States, the European Union, and the African Diaspora, when she was an Inaugural Fellow at the Advanced Leadership Initiative at Harvard University in 2009.
Prior to her year at Harvard, she was Senior Vice President and Director of Public-Private Partnerships at the former AED, a U.S.-based non-profit which worked on education, health,and economic development in more than 125 countries. Previously, she served as the Assistant Administrator for Africa of the U.S. Agency for International Development as the senior government official directing foreign assistance to Africa.
A veteran foreign affairs specialist, she has held numerous positions in both government and the non-profit private sector, including Deputy Assistant Secretary at the U.S. Department of State, Executive Vice President of the National Council of Negro Women, Vice President of the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, President of the African-American Institute and Senior Adviser of the Africa Leadership Forum. She taught at New York City Technical College and the University of Liberia, and for decades has concentrated on sustainable development in education, political participation, conflict resolution, leadership development, and women’s leadership in Africa, Asia and the Caribbean.
A graduate of Chatham College (BA) and Columbia University (MIA), Ms. Derryck islisted in Who's Who and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, Bretton Woods Committee, and the World Academy of Art and Science. She serves on non-profit boards,including the Jane Goodall Institute, Femmes Afrique Solidarité and Global Rights. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including a 2011 Purpose Prize Fellowship Award, GuggenheimHumanitarian Award, Martin Luther King Service Award and an honorary doctorate.
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