Great news out of Washington DC / USAID recently. The appointment of Chris Holmes is a big step forward for the implementation of the Water for the Poor Act.
The Office of the Administrator is very pleased to announce that Administrator Shah has designated Christian olmes to serve as the USAID Global Water Coordinator.
This is the first time that USAID has established such a leadership position. The Coordinator is the senior representative within USAID responsible for coordinating the implementation of key water policy initiatives, including USAID's water strategy, as well as related areas in the Presidential Policy Directive on Global Development, Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review, USAID Forward and the integration of the USAID water programs and policies with new agency initiatives that are critically dependent on water (i.e. Feed the Future initiative, Global Health, and Global Climate Change). The Coordinator will also serve as the primary spokesman and liaison with public and private organizations, including congressional leaders, to coordinate water efforts. The Coordinator will coordinate USAID efforts to implement the Senator Paul Simon Water for the Poor Act.
The incumbent is also responsible for providing technical and intellectual advice and guidance to Agency senior leadership on water policy, budget, and strategy. The Coordinator will work closely with the Bureau for Economic Growth, Agriculture and Trade (EGAT), as well as the Bureau for Policy, Program and Learning (PPL) and other Agency units, in carrying out these responsibilities.
Christian Holmes comes with a depth and breadth of experience to enable him to coordinate USAID's global water efforts. Since joining USAID in January of 2010 as the Senior Advisor for Energy and Environment, he has been a key lead in USAID and interagency discussions on water as well as providing support to USAID Missions. Holmes has also served as Director of the U.S. Trade and Development Agency, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Refugee Programs, and Acting Director of the USAID Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance. As a USAID Senior Foreign Service Officer with rank of Minister Counselor, he twice received the Presidential Meritorious Service Award. At the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), he was confirmed by the Senate as both Chief Financial Officer and Assistant Administrator for Administration and Resource Management and also served as EPA's Deputy for Federal Facilities Enforcement and Principal Deputy Assistant Administrator for Solid Waste and Emergency Response. Holmes served in the U.S. Army, Second Lieutenant, Civil Affairs, receiving the U.S. Army Soldier's Medal for Heroism.