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Advocacy Update ~ March 12, 2018

This post was written by Danielle Heiberg, Senior Policy & Advocacy Manager, and Melissa Chacko, Policy Associate.


Are we Nearing a Vote on a Final Bill for FY18?

As we get closer to March 23, when the current Continuing Resolution (CR) expires, it seems that Congress is close to voting on a final spending package for the remainder of Fiscal Year (FY) 2018. We are hearing that the spending bill will be released on March 14 and the House of Representatives will vote on it shortly thereafter. This will give the Senate about a week to vote on the legislation in order to avoid another government shutdown.

The topline numbers, known as 302b, for each spending bill have not been released, so at this time we still don’t know how the International Affairs budget, and therefore the Global Health Programs at State and USAID, will fare.

As Congress finalizes FY18 appropriations and starts on the FY19 appropriations process, it is prime time for the global health community to advocate on Capitol Hill for maintaining robust global health funding. Global Health Council created a graphic with a list of “Hill Days” when the community is advocating on Capitol Hill. View the graphic.

Tentative Hearing Schedule Released

Originally scheduled for late February, the hearings to discuss the FY19 budget with Secretary Rex Tillerson and Administrator Mark Green were rescheduled to mid-March in both the House Foreign Affairs and Senate Foreign Relations Committees. At this time, hearings before the Appropriations committees have not been set.

Tentative dates are:

Secretary Tillerson:
-Senate Foreign Relations Committee – Thursday, March 15 – 10:00 am
-House Foreign Affairs Committee – Tuesday, March 20 – 9:30 am

Administrator Mark Green:
-Senate Foreign Relations Committee – Tuesday, March 20 – TBD
-House Foreign Affairs Committee – Wednesday, March 21 – 9:30 am

Representative Smith Introduces Cardiovascular Disease Resolution

At the end of February, Representative Chris Smith (R-NJ) introduced H.Res.752, a resolution recognizing the rise of cardiovascular disease (CVD) as the world’s leading cause of preventable death and disability. The resolution calls on the Department of State, USAID, and CDC to comprehensively examine the impact of CVDs on health and development in U.S. priority assistance countries. It also calls for the development of a coordinated strategy by integrating CVD into existing programs. Read the resolution.

Reflections from the Global Health Community: Changing the Way We Operate

By Melissa Chacko, Policy Associate, Global Health Council

As global health organizations in Washington, DC are preparing to hit quarter one goals, they are juggling advocacy around both the Fiscal Year 2018 and 2019 U.S. budgets as well as advocating for global health legislation and policy. This robust agenda requires the global health advocacy community to stay one step ahead of possible roadblocks. But sometimes, it’s worth stepping away from the routine and reflect on how our community operates, which gives us the opportunity to understand the “why” of how we work and if our approaches are appropriate in the current global health landscape.

While there are multiple perspectives on this topic, we spoke with a few members of the global health community and compiled five ways that the community can change how it operates. These perspectives range from rethinking global health assistance to working toward bold goals. While these interviews do not represent the perspectives of the entire community, it springboards discussions about how we can think outside of the box to reach our advocacy goals.

1.) Putting LMIC Priorities First

“The global health community needs to embrace a new way of operating in global health assistance. Global health assistance is primarily framed around donor priorities, and low – and middle – income countries (LMICs) then work to develop a plan for using related funds. While we have seen successes in priority areas, particularly around HIV/AIDS, malaria, and child health, these efforts have not transformed health systems. To transform health systems we need to change how we engage with LMICs, especially those experiencing economic booms. Many middle-income countries have transformed their health systems by prioritizing primary health at the community level. Donors should collaborate with these countries to help other LMICs improve their health systems through South-South partnerships. The United Nations defines  South-South cooperation as a broad framework of collaboration among countries of the South in the political, economic, social, cultural, environmental and technical domains. Triangular cooperation occurs when traditional donors facilitate such initiatives. The global health community should support these types of partnerships and donors should leverage them to ‘work ourselves out of a job.’ ”


Tiaji Salaam
Global Health Specialist
Congressional Research Service

2.) Rethinking Public-Private Sector Partnerships

 “In addition to changing the way we operate with countries we need to reconsider how we use the term ‘public-private partnerships.’ At the moment, most public-private partnerships supported by donors in the health sector are collaborations between industrialized nations and large private companies based in those respective countries. The global health community could benefit from broadening those partnerships and including more frequently entrepreneurs and private companies in LMICs. Engineers in Cameroon and Uganda, for example, have developed inexpensive devices for expanding access to cardiologists and diagnosing pneumonia, respectively. We need to increase our support for local private companies. Broader use of innovative technologies developed in the field can increase sustainability, decrease costs, and may be more suitable for the local environment, both culturally and technologically.”


Tiaji Salaam
Global Health Specialist
Congressional Research Service


3.) Building Equal Gender Representation in Global Health Leadership

“One of the moments in 2017 that I believe pushed the global health community to do better and change the way we operate was the lack of equal gender representation in global health leadership. An example of this was the photo taken of global health leaders at the Universal Health Coverage Forum in Japan that perfectly depicted the lack of equal gender representation in global health leadership, where only one leader was a woman. This lack of representation is evident throughout global health, as women make up 75% of the health workforce yet occupy less than 25% of the most influential leadership positions. We can change the way we operate by identifying these discrepancies in global health leadership and push for equal representation in global health leadership.”


Roopa Dhatt
Executive Director
Women in Global Health


4.) Breaking Out of Silos

With the UN High-Level Meeting on Tuberculosis (TB) taking place later this year, I think there is a worldwide understanding that Tuberculosis cannot go any further as the leading global infectious killer. As a global health community, we need to break out of our silos and understand what it takes in terms of resources and programs to stop the TB epidemic from growing.”

“While it’s easier said than done, there are opportunities to break out of our silos and work together. From a science perspective, there are naturally sort of communities that find themselves as key stakeholders on cross-sectoral global health issues. For example, we know that TB is the leading cause of death for people living with HIV. Knowing this, the TB and HIV/AIDS communities often work together to share best practices and tactics based on historic wins from both the domestic and global level. However, some connections are not as obvious as HIV and TB and it is up to organizations to have the courage to cut through the red tape that limits the NGO space and cooperate better. For example, Treatment Action Group (TAG) connected with the maternal and child health community to collaboratively lead advocacy on a federally-mandated task force on the inclusion of pregnant and lactating women who have tuberculosis in clinical trials who for unfound reasons are often categorically excluded. TAG and other grassroots activists saw this is as opportunity to put pregnant women with TB on the map and connect with maternal and child health stakeholders and understand how TB affects maternal and child health issues.”


Suraj Madoori
U.S. and Global Health Policy Director
Treatment Action Group


5.) Working Toward Bold Goals through Incremental Improvements

In our interactions with policymakers, their staff, and others who shape key funding and legislative decisions that affect global health, we need to keep striking the right balance of being passionate advocates for our issues, deeply committed to solving big problems and savvy partners who can propose targeted policy solutions that are workable in a challenging environment. We can continue working towards big, bold goals through measurable, incremental improvements. The maternal and child health advocacy community’s effort to pass the Reach Every Mother and Child Act is a great example. This bill sets an incredible goal – to end preventable child and maternal deaths globally – and outlines specific, targeted steps the U.S. government can take to contribute to achieving it: by focusing on the poorest and most vulnerable populations; improving coordination among U.S. government agencies, foreign governments, and international organizations; and requiring a coordinated strategy with ambitious, measurable targets annually reported to ensure accountability and maintain the pace of progress towards our goal – a world where no mother or child dies needlessly. As advocates, we’re able to accomplish tremendous things when we’re smart, strategic, and persistent, with an eye towards the steps we can take year by year to continue progress towards goals with decades-long horizons.”


Emily Conron
Senior Advocacy Associate
World Vision US

Be the Catalyst!

When we question how we operate, we are also challenging our community to do better by addressing the “elephant in the room” and thinking strategically of who we are missing in our discussions. However, it is important to emphasize that these conversations, while fruitful, can end in wishful thinking when we do not follow them with action. Moving from discussion to action requires courage and the ability to work beyond our comfort zones and hold each other accountable. But when we do it, we become catalysts and more effective global health advocates.

Danielle Heiberg, Senior Advocacy Manager

Danielle Heiberg is the Senior Advocacy Manager at Global Health Council (GHC). In this role, she manages GHC’s domestic and global advocacy strategy and coordinates GHC’s relationship with the global health advocacy community. She oversees GHC’s appropriations and legislative work; manages the publication of “The Global Health Briefing Book” and other advocacy resources; and coordinates the work of several thematic roundtables. Prior to joining GHC, she was a Senior Program Associate at InterAction, where she was responsible for managing thematic working groups on global health, food security and agriculture, and climate and development. Danielle also managed communications and outreach for NGO Aid Map, an initiative to map the work of InterAction members. Previously, she worked in the Public Policy office of Yahoo and in the Congressional and Public Affairs office of the Institute of Museum and Library Services, an independent federal agency. She also worked on Capitol Hill for Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA). Danielle holds a BA in International Relations from Mills College.

2018 GHC Board of Directors Ballot

GHC Board Members Standing for Reelection

John M. Ariale
Member of Membership and Development Committees

John Ariale joined Cloakroom Advisors as a Principal in 2014. John came to Cloakroom with nearly 30 years of senior level experience in congressional relations, legislative politics and advocacy. He brings a comprehensive knowledge of the intricate and complex details of the appropriations process to our practice with policy expertise in the areas of effective foreign assistance, international relations, defense, the foreign assistance framework, global development, global health, homeland security, defense and financial services.

John launched the Center for Effective Foreign Assistance (CEFA), a 501(c)(3) in 2015 and currently serves as the organization’s President. The Center is a coalition of stakeholders working towards the goal of advancing U.S. leadership in promoting effective, efficient and transparent development assistance that leads to economic growth, security, global health advancements, and poverty reduction around the world. CEFA focuses on the following nine core areas: Aid Effectiveness, Food Security, International Security, Global Health, International Conservation, Humanitarian Assistance, Poverty Reduction, Education, and Economic Growth and Trade.

Prior to joining Cloakroom, John served as Congressman Ander Crenshaw’s Chief of Staff and his Appropriations Associate, the Member’s liaison to the House Committee on Appropriations, working extensively on the portfolio of issues under the jurisdiction of the Subcommittees on State, Foreign Operations from 2000 – 2013.

During his tenure on the Hill, John developed legislative proposals to reform international food aid, the United Nations, and reform the evaluation, accountability, and transparency reporting of foreign assistance. He created, developed and coordinated the activities of the Congressional Caucus on Effective Foreign Assistance and implemented all policy briefings and programmatic activities for that caucus as well as the Congressional Nepal Caucus, the International Conservation Caucus and the Congressional Malaria Caucus.

In June of 2017, John joined the Board of Directors of the Global Health Council (GHC), the leading membership organization supporting and connecting advocates, implementers and stakeholders around global health priorities worldwide.


Nasserie Carew
Member of the Membership and Nominating Committees

Nasserie Carew is currently Director of Global Communications & Office of Public Affairs at the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG). In this role, she is responsible for the agency’s worldwide communications strategy and execution, including media relations, employee communications, and thought-leadership communications. BBG is a U.S. federal agency that oversees the Voice of America, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, the Middle East Broadcasting Networks, Radio Free Asia, and the Office of Cuba Broadcasting.

Nasserie joined the BBG from the U.S. Department of State, where she served as Senior Advisor to the Assistant Secretary of Public Affairs and led communications in the State Department’s Ebola Coordination Unit (ECU). Prior to that she served as the Managing Director of Public Affairs at the Millennium Challenge Corporation, where she managed a broad range of communications functions, working with leadership in the White House and across government agencies.

A veteran of issues management, Nasserie has led international and national strategic communications for over 20 years. Nasserie is a member of the Global Health Council’s board of directors and has served on numerous advisory committees including the advisory body of the World Congress on Communication for Development. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Iowa and a Master’s degree from Howard University.


Jared (Jed) Hoffman
Secretary; Member of the Development and Nominating Committees

Jared (Jed) M. Hoffman is the Vice President for Resource Development and Management in the International Programs Group of World Vision – US, leading a team of technical advisors, program management officers, senior business development officers and grant development specialists in the design and management oversight of a diverse portfolio of ongoing development programs in Africa, Latin America, eastern Europe and the Middle East and East / South Asia funded by USG agencies, multilaterals such as the World Food Program and the Global Fund, and major foundations. He has executive supervision for multi-country initiatives such as the CORE Polio Eradication Program, the All Child Reading and the MOMENT Family Planning programs, supported by USAID and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Prior to joining World Vision, Mr. Hoffman lived and worked in Latin America and Africa for 25 years, carrying out archival research, working as a journalist, and supervising grass-roots development and relief programs. As Global Chief of Party for the AIDSRelief PEPFAR Track 1.0 Emergency Scale-up of anti-retroviral treatment program, he led a consortium of 6 implementing organizations (Catholic Relief Services, Children’s AIDS Fund, Catholic Medical Mission Board, IMA-World Health, Institute for Human Virology of the University of Maryland-Institute for Human Virology, and The Futures Group), and over 300 local partner organizations supporting durable clinical outcomes for 450,000 patients in 9 countries in Africa and the Caribbean. As Regional Director for Catholic Relief Services’ development and relief programs in Latin America and the Caribbean, Mr. Hoffman provided executive leadership to 12 country offices and 7 outreach programs in the Americas. The regional director responsibilities followed 15 years as Country Representative for CRS programs in Peru, Central Africa, Mexico, and Guatemala.

Mr. Hoffman was a Fulbright-Hays Scholar carrying out research in economic and social history in central Peruvian Highlands, a freelance journalist in Lima, Peru specializing in economic themes, and a Research Specialist for the University of Wisconsin California Condor Project supported by the US Fish and Wildlife Department. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature and History from Denison University, a Masters of Arts Degree in Ibero-American Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a Masters of Arts Degree in International Policy and Practice from the Elliott School of International Affairs at George Washington University.


Michele Sumilas
GHC Board Member  

Michele manages the daily operations of Bread for the World and Bread for the World Institute and assists the president in directing their overall strategies. She has extensive, successful experience as a manager. Before joining Bread, she worked at the US Agency for International Development (USAID), including as chief of staff. While at USAID, Michele played a key role in the U.S. response to the Ebola crisis. USAID is a 10,000-person government agency with 13 bureaus in Washington, D.C., and 75 missions around the world. Michele previously served on the House of Representatives’ appropriations subcommittee on state and foreign operations, where she oversaw the U.S. government’s development policy and budget. Prior to serving in government, Sumilas worked at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, where she led a global health advocacy portfolio. She also served as the director of government relations for the Global Health Council.


New Proposed Members

Anthony Brown
Senior Legal Counsel, Gavi, The Vaccine Alliance

Anthony Brown is Senior Legal Counsel with Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. With Gavi since 2005, as an innovative and solutions-oriented lawyer, Anthony advises on the range of issues affecting a global health partnerships with over 9 billion in financing over its 5-year strategic period. He has been instrumental in the set up and operations of Gavi’s innovative financing mechanisms that have helped Gavi mobilize and channel more funding to immunization programmes in low income countries and achieve predictability in funding streams. He co-led projects to increase efficiencies of Gavi’s governance and operational structure. And as a business partner to Gavi’s country programme team, he works with his clients to ensure maximum use of Gavi investments. From 2015 – 2016, Anthony was on a secondment with the CGIAR System Organization, a global agricultural research partnership, where, as Acting General Counsel, he helped lead a major governance transition. Collaborating with Government funders and implementing partners, he also developed the organization’s new partnership financing agreements. Previous to Gavi, Anthony worked with a litigation law firm and he started his career in New York with the strategy consulting firm of Booz Allen & Hamilton. Anthony is a graduate of Columbia College and earned his J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School and his M.B.A. from the Wharton School.


Pape Gaye
President and CEO, IntraHealth International

Pape Gaye is a native of Senegal and a lifelong advocate for health workers, strong health systems, and access to health care for all.

Under his leadership as president and CEO of IntraHealth International, the organization has made human resources for health a crucial part of the worldwide conversation on global health. Gaye draws on three decades of leadership in international health and development as he oversees work in around 40 countries to strengthen their health workforces and health systems.

During his watch, IntraHealth has led two of the US government’s flagship human resources for health projects (the Capacity Project and CapacityPlus) and established official relations with the World Health Organization (WHO). Gaye has long advocated for a greater focus on the health workforce. In May 2016 at the World Health Assembly, the WHO and member states responded to such advocacy efforts with the first-ever global health workforce strategy, Workforce 2030.

Gaye is a frequent international speaker on issues related to capacity-building and the global health workforce. In the United States, his testimony on Capitol Hill during a 2014 Ebola-focused congressional hearing brought the role of frontline health workers to the fore. As a panelist during the White House Global Summit in July 2016, he urged the incoming US president to focus on international aid and human resources for health as powerful investments in our shared future. His editorials appear regularly in the Huffington Post, Devex, and other media outlets.

Partnership, Gaye believes, is essential. He forges strong collaborative relationships with diverse stakeholders—from ministries of health to private-sector partners to local health workers—to meet the enormous health challenges we face in low- and middle-income countries.

Gaye began his career with the US Peace Corps, and went on to work with the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Committee and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Before his appointment as CEO at IntraHealth, he led the organization’s regional office for West, Central, and North Africa.

Gaye holds a master’s degree in business administration from the University of California at Los Angeles. His board and advisory services include the Center for African Family Studies, Duke University’s Global Health Institute, Financing for Development, Gillings Global Gateway at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, InterAction, Nourish International, the Reproductive Health NGO CEO working group, the Triangle Global Health Consortium, and Speak Up Africa.


Amy Israel
Global Health Thought Leadership & Policy Director, Eli Lilly and Company

Amy Israel is the Global Health Thought Leadership & Policy Director at Eli Lilly and Company and has been with the company since 2012. The Lilly Global Health Partnership develops person-centered models to expand access to care and improve outcomes closer to the primary level in resource-limited settings, for diabetes and cancer. Israel brings evidence and data generated from the Lilly Global Health Partnership models of care to broader regional and international audiences for replication and policy change. Prior to this role, Israel led the Lilly Multi-Drug Resistant Tuberculosis (MDR-TB) Partnership on behalf of the Lilly Foundation.

Israel has nearly 20 years of experience designing and implementing programs for at-risk communities in health with governments and NGOs in North and Central America, Eastern Europe, Asia, and sub-Saharan Africa. Examples of her former work include designing women’s micro-enterprises in Mexico, coordinating a network of 50 organizations addressing health and homelessness in Toronto, supporting young incarcerated people in Detroit, and designing access to housing and health strategies and programs for immigrant communities.

She has held numerous committee and advisory roles with entities such as the Private Sector Delegation to the Board of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, the NCD Alliance, the NCD Roundtable, and WHO Global TB Programme.

Israel holds a Master of Social Work in Community Organizing from the University of Michigan and is based in Geneva.


Susan Polan
Associate Executive Director, Public Affairs and Advocacy, American Public Health Association (APHA)

Susan L. Polan, Ph.D., is the associate executive director for public affairs and advocacy with the American Public Health Association. She oversees the Association’s departments of government relations, affiliate affairs, communications and marketing and membership services. She is responsible for planning and directing APHA’s legislative, regulatory and legal activities, communicating those initiatives and Association news to members and the public, APHA’s Get Ready campaign, Generation Public Health and overseeing membership recruitment and retention and Affiliate, Caucus and Section relations.

Prior to joining APHA, Polan worked as the director of government relations at the Trust for America’s Health, a public health advocacy organization. There, she served as lead staff lobbyist to Congress, federal agencies and the administration on priority issues, including public health infrastructure development, chronic disease prevention and where she advocated for new funding for a nationwide health tracking network.

Polan has more than two decades of experience in public health, government relations and associations. She has drafted legislation for Senate consideration on tobacco control and Safe and Drug Free Schools as an American Association for Advancement of Science Congressional science and technology fellow for the Senate Labor and Human Resources Committee. She served as director of federal government relations at the American Cancer Society and as president and senior advisor of Partnership for Prevention, where she represented the nonprofit to government officials, congressional offices, the Congressional Prevention Coalition and other partners. She has also worked as a health policy consultant whose projects included encouraging an increase in funding for environmental health concerns and grant writing for several health clients.

Polan earned her Bachelor of Science degree in psychology from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. She later earned a Master’s of Science degree in health psychology from San Diego State University and a doctorate in social ecology from the University of California, Irvine.