Press Release

Morton Halperin and Lorne Craner Join the MCC Board of Directors

For Immediate Release

January 31, 2013

Washington, D.C. — The U.S. Government’s Millennium Challenge Corporation swore in two private sector members to its Board of Directors today. Morton Halperin, senior advisor for the Open Society Foundations, joins the Board and Lorne Craner, president of the International Republican Institute, rejoins the Board for a second term. Both were nominated by President Obama in 2012 and confirmed by the U.S. Senate in January 2013.

“I am very pleased that Dr. Morton Halperin has joined the MCC Board of Directors,” MCC CEO Daniel W. Yohannes said. “Our private sector members play a crucial role in helping MCC fulfill its mission of helping countries reduce poverty through sustainable economic growth. Morton’s years of leadership and foreign affairs expertise will be a great addition to the Board.”

“I am also pleased to welcome Lorne Craner back to the MCC Board for a second term,” Yohannes added. “Lorne’s contributions during his first term were immeasurable, and his experience will continue to be a great asset to MCC.”

Morton Halperin is a senior advisor to the Open Society Foundations. Halperin held several positions with the Open Society Institute from 2002 to 2008, including director of U.S advocacy from 2005 to 2008. Halperin has held a number of leadership positions within the federal government as part of the Clinton, Nixon and Johnson administrations. Most recently, he served as director of the Policy Planning Staff at the State Department from 1998 to 2001. He also served as special assistant to the president and senior director for democracy at the National Security Council from 1994 to 1996.

Outside government, Halperin held leadership positions at the Center for American Progress, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, the Brookings Institution, and the Council on Foreign Relations. He authored several books and articles including Bureaucratic Politics and Foreign Policy, The Democracy Advantage and Protecting Democracy. He received a B.A. from Columbia University and a M.A. and Ph.D. from Yale University.

Lorne Craner has served as president of the International Republican Institute (IRI) since August 2004, leading and strengthening the organization’s programs in countries such as Afghanistan, China, Colombia, Pakistan, Indonesia, and Iraq. Under his leadership, IRI expanded its work in women’s participation, program evaluation and democracy promotion. Previously, Craner was assistant secretary for democracy, human rights and labor under Secretary of State Colin Powell. Among other accomplishments, he helped design MCC’s good governance criteria.

From 1992 to 1993, Craner was director of Asian affairs at the National Security Council under Brent Scowcroft. Prior to that, he served as deputy assistant secretary of state for legislative affairs. He also served as Sen. John McCain’s foreign policy advisor from 1986 to 1989. Craner began his career as the foreign policy advisor to former Rep. Jim Kolbe. A member of the Council on Foreign Relations, Craner received a B.A. from Reed College and a M.A. from Georgetown University.

The Secretary of State, the Secretary of the Treasury, the U.S. Trade Representative, the USAID administrator, the MCC CEO, and four nongovernmental representatives comprise MCC's Board of Directors. These private sector Board members are nominated by the President based on recommendations received from the minority and majority leaders of the House of Representatives and the Senate. The Senate then confirms the nominated Board Members.

Full biographies of MCC’s Board members can be found at