Press Release

MCC Shares Results of Gender Policy in New York City

For Immediate Release

April 18, 2014

Washington, D.C.—The Millennium Challenge Corporation joined donor agencies, philanthropists, foundations, and the investment community at the Ford Foundation in New York City to share the results of the U.S. Government agency’s gender policy.


The event, entitled “Empowering Women in Emerging Economies: Achieving Real Results,” represented an opportunity—on the occasion of MCC’s 10-year anniversary—to take stock of the agency’s achievements in putting its gender policy into practice.


“MCC insists on certain gender requirements as a condition of our grant funding,” said Senior Advisor Cassandra Butts, who addressed the event on behalf of the agency. “We hold ourselves and our partners accountable for gender equality,” she added.


Butts highlighted some of the agency’s results in Africa and Asia. She stated, “In Lesotho, a married woman can now own a business and obtain a loan without her husband’s consent. In Mongolia, women are securing titles to land and using them for collateral. In Tanzania, women are benefiting from our trainings that provide skills to help generate income.”


The event served as an opportunity to discuss challenges and opportunities for scaling up investments—both public and private—for women in poor but well-governed countries and communities around the world.


MCC was joined by representatives of the Clinton Foundation’s No Ceilings Initiative, Goldman Sachs’ 10,000 Women Leaders, Fortune Magazine, Devex, Standard Bank of South Africa, Vital Voices, and others—organizations that share the vital mission of empowering women in emerging markets.


The event’s panelists included:


  • Penny Abeywardena, Director of Girls and Women Integration, Clinton Global Initiative
  • Marguerite Berger, Vice President, Impact Evaluation and Research, Vital Voices Global Partnership
  • Cassandra Butts, Senior Advisor, Millennium Challenge Corporation
  • Nina Easton, Senior Editor, Fortune Magazine; Co-Chair, Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit
  • Maureen Harrington, Head, International Development Group, Standard Bank of South Africa
  • Jennifer Klein, Senior Advisor, No Ceilings Initiative, The Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation
  • Raj Kumar, President and Editor-in-Chief, Devex
  • Noa Meyer, Global Program Director for 10,000 Women Leaders, Goldman Sachs
  • Claudia Rodrigues, Manager, Gender & Social Assessment, Millennium Challenges Account-Cabo Verde


The panelists shared different experiences related to empowering women and supporting the right policies and institutions that include women as full participants in the economy.



MCC is an innovative and independent U.S. agency that is working to reduce global poverty through economic growth. Created by the U.S. Congress in January 2004, with strong bipartisan support, MCC provides time-limited grants and assistance to countries that demonstrate a commitment to good governance, investments in people and economic freedom.