Press Release

Senator Bill Frist and Kenneth Hackett Join MCC's Board of Directors

For Immediate Release

October 30, 2007

Washington, D.C.—Former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, M.D., and Catholic Relief Services President, Kenneth Hackett, join the Millennium Challenge Corporation’s Board of Directors.  Both were confirmed by the Senate on October 26, 2007, and were appointed by the President to assume the duties of an MCC Board member.  This is Mr. Hackett’s second term on the MCC Board. 

The MCC Board is comprised of the Secretary of State, the Secretary of the Treasury, the U.S. Trade Representative, the USAID Administrator, the MCC CEO, and four non-government representatives.  These private sector Board members are appointed by the President from lists submitted by the minority and majority leaders of the House of Representatives and the United States Senate and confirmed by the Senate.

"I am very pleased that, for the first time, MCC has a full nine member Board.  Senator Frist and Mr. Hackett bring valuable expertise and knowledge to the Board and we enthusiastically welcome their appointment,” said MCC CEO John Danilovich. 

A native of Nashville, Tenn., Sen. Frist is the Frederick H. Schultz Class of 1951 Visiting Professor of International Economic Policy at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. 

A Harvard Medical School honors graduate, board certified in both general surgery and cardiothoracic surgery, Sen. Frist became Director of Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s heart and lung transplant program in 1986.  Recognized as a pioneer in heart-lung transplantation, he founded and became Director of the Vanderbilt Multi-Organ Transplant Center three years later. 

With his 1994 election to the U.S. Senate, Sen. Frist became the first practicing physician elected to that body since 1928.  He rose to Majority Leader just eight years after his election, having served less time in Congress than anyone ever to hold that position.  Fulfilling his pledge to serve just two terms, he retired to Nashville in January.

Sen. Frist held numerous committee assignments during his legislative career, including seats on the Finance and Foreign Relations Committees. He championed American leadership in the global fight against HIV/AIDS, successfully fought to ensure access to clean water, and was a Congressional representative to the United Nations.

Sen. Frist has traveled to more than a dozen countries in Africa over the last decade to perform voluntary medical mission work.Former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle has joined him to co-chair the ONE Campaign’s presidential initiative, ONE Vote ’08. Sen. Frist also chairs Save the Children’s global Survive to 5 campaign, which seeks to provide basic health interventions that can save more than six million children around the world each year.

Sen. Frist serves on numerous prestigious boards including: Africare, the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Committee on Conscience, the Clinton Global Initiative’s Global Health Working Group, the U.S. Global Leadership Campaign’s Advisory Council and the Mountain Gorilla Veterinary Project. 

"MCC’s innovative model emphasizing transparency and accountability is the most responsible way to ensure sustainable development in the 21st century,” Sen. Frist said.  "I’m honored to join this young organization as we work with recipients to improve healthcare, education and economic opportunity for millions throughout the world.”

Kenneth Hackett is president of Catholic Relief Services (CRS), the international humanitarian agency of the U.S. Catholic community. He oversees operations in more than 100 countries, with a global staff of nearly 5,000.

A native of West Roxbury, Mass., Mr. Hackett graduated from Boston College in 1968. He joined the Peace Corps and was assigned to serve in Ghana.

Mr. Hackett joined CRS in 1972, starting his career in Sierra Leone. He has served CRS in posts throughout Africa and Asia, as well as in a variety of positions at CRS headquarters. He was the Regional Director for Africa, guiding CRS’ response to the Ethiopian famine of 1984-1985. He supervised operations in East Africa during the crisis in Somalia in the early 1990s. Mr. Hackett has led CRS since 1993.

Mr. Hackett has received honorary doctorate degrees from the University of Notre Dame, Boston College, Siena College and New York Medical College.  In Oct. 2004, Mr. Hackett was named a Knight Commander of the Papal Order of Saint Gregory the Great, one of the highest Papal honors.

He has served on the advisory committees of the Time Global Health Summit; Woodrow Wilson Institute, Committee on Failed States; Changing the Present; a non-profit corporation operated by Important Gifts, Inc.; and the Baltimore Council on Foreign Affairs.

"I am honored to be selected to a second term as an MCC Board member,” said Mr. Hackett.  "Over the past three years I have witnessed this new agency evolve into a world-class institution that is helping millions of people pull themselves out of poverty.  I am proud to have been part of this early success and look forward to more accomplishments in the future,” said Mr. Hackett. 

Biographies of MCC Board members can be found by visiting:  



Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), a United States government corporation designed to work with some of the poorest countries in the world, is based on the principle that aid is most effective when it reinforces good governance, economic freedom, and investments in people that promote economic growth and elimination of extreme poverty.