Press Release

MCC CEO Daniel Yohannes Delivers Keynote Address at Second Day of State Department Global Diaspora Forum

For Immediate Release

May 18, 2011

Washington, D.C. — Daniel W. Yohannes, CEO of the U.S. Government’s Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), today delivered a keynote address on the second day of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s Global Diaspora Forum at the U.S. Department of State.

The three-day event is bringing together over 300 leaders from diaspora communities around the United States with the goal of strengthening collaboration and engagement among those communities, civil society organizations, the private sector, and public institutions.

In his speech, Mr. Yohannes, a native of Ethiopia, called on diaspora communities in the United States to stay engaged with their native countries, stressing the unique role that these communities play in strengthening the bonds between their birthplaces and the United States.

“Diaspora communities are not only valued members of our adopted country, but also critical for making the world more stable, secure and prosperous,” stated Mr. Yohannes. “You have a special perspective on the opportunities and challenges facing your countries of birth. You also have a passion for making a difference that – when combined with the efforts of thousands like you – can transform a nation.”

Mr. Yohannes also discussed the importance of building economic ties between diaspora communities in the United States and their native countries.

“The linkages we create by investing in the emerging markets from which many of us emigrated are not just cultural, they are also economic,” Mr. Yohannes continued. “These critical economic ties will not only help our birthplaces grow; they will help develop the next marketplaces for American investment that will help our adopted country grow, as well.”

Mr. Yohannes discussed a number of ways in which members of diaspora communities can work with MCC to alleviate poverty and expand market linkages between the United States and their countries of origin. MCC recognizes that diaspora groups are committed to development and is actively working to expand and strengthen its outreach with these communities.

In addition to Mr. Yohannes, the three-day forum featured speeches by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, USAID Administrator Raj Shah, and other top State Department officials, as well as business and development leaders from around the country.

You may find Mr. Yohannes’ remarks as prepared for delivery here: