Person

Rajiv Shah

Rajiv Shah is a former Democratic Party operative who currently works as president of the Rockefeller Foundation. The Rockefeller Foundation is a left-of-center grantmaking organization that supports environmentalist organizations and social policy advocacy through support for organizations such as New America, the Urban Institute, and the Funders Committee on Civic Participation. [1] Between 2009 and 2015, Shah was the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Aid (USAID) for the Obama administration. [2]

Early Life

Rajiv Shah was born on March 9, 1973. [3] He received a bachelor of science in economics in 1995 form the University of Michigan, a medical doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania in 2002, and master of arts in healthcare management and economics in 2005 from the University of Pennsylvania. [4]

Between 2002 and 2009, Shah was a director at the left-of-center Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, an organization that has historically supported abortion-advocacy groups such as Planned Parenthood [5] and worked alongside left-of-center labor unions, such as the American Federation of Teachers. [6]

Obama Administration

In 2009, Rajiv Shah was appointed by the Obama administration as the 16th Administrator of the United States Agency for International Aid (USAID). [7] USAID has been criticized for providing endless financial support, mainly in the form of taxpayer-supported loans, to corporations seeking to expand their footprint in the developing world, rather than supporting developing countries. [8] USAID has in particular been criticized under Shah for this development, with the left-leaning publication Current Affairs crediting the Obama administration with taking corporate investment by USAID to “large strategic proportions.” [9]

During his time at USAID, Shah gained a reputation for building consensus between USAID and Republican lawmakers on foreign aid funding when common ground in other areas with the Obama administration seemed elusive. [10] Some have given Shah credit for a “transformation” at USAID due to his “ability to negotiate the work of an administration many feel showed little interest in extending its hand for congressional support.” [11]

Rockefeller Foundation

Rajiv Shah has led the left-of-center Rockefeller Foundation since 2017. [12] During his tenure, the Rockefeller Foundation has become more active in race-focused social policy, including initiatives that earmark capital funding for small businesses led by African American and Latino people. [13] Shah also oversaw a $1.5 million contribution to the left-wing Boston University Center for Antiracist Research. [14]

References

  1. Kirk MacDonald, “The Rockefeller Foundation At The Century Mark:  Betraying Donor Intent and Harming America” Capital Research Center. December 3, 2012. Accessed August 14, 2021. http://www.capitalresearch.org/article/the-rockefeller-foundation-at-the-century-mark-betraying-donor-intent-and-harming-america/ ^
  2. Khastagir, Saheli. “Aid for Profit: The Dark History of USAID” Current Affairs. March 10, 2021. Accessed August 14, 2021. https://www.currentaffairs.org/2021/03/aid-for-profit-the-dark-history-of-usaid ^
  3. “Administrator of USAID: Who is Rajiv Shah?” AllGov. July 11, 2010. Accessed August 14, 2021. http://www.allgov.com/news/appointments-and-resignations/administrator-of-usaid-who-is-rajiv-shah?news=841116 ^
  4. “Dr. Rajiv Shah” Linkedin. https://www.linkedin.com/in/drrajivjshah/ ^
  5. “Planned Parenthood of Central Washington Receives Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Grant of $75,000 for New Walla Walla Center” Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. https://www.gatesfoundation.org/ideas/media-center/press-releases/2001/05/planned-parenthood-receives-grant ^
  6. “American Federation of Teachers” Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. July 10, 2020. Accessed August 14, 2021. https://www.gatesfoundation.org/ideas/speeches/2010/07/american-federation-of-teachers ^
  7. “Dr. Rajiv Shah” Linkedin. https://www.linkedin.com/in/drrajivjshah/ ^
  8. Khastagir, Saheli. “Aid for Profit: The Dark History of USAID” Current Affairs. https://www.currentaffairs.org/2021/03/aid-for-profit-the-dark-history-of-usaid ^
  9.  Khastagir, Saheli. “Aid for Profit: The Dark History of USAID” Current Affairs. March 10, 2021. Accessed August 14, 2021. https://www.currentaffairs.org/2021/03/aid-for-profit-the-dark-history-of-usaid ^
  10. Igoe, Michael. “Rajiv Shah’s USAID legacy” devex. February 12, 2015. Accessed August 14, 2021. https://www.devex.com/news/rajiv-shah-s-usaid-legacy-85239 ^
  11. [1] Igoe, Michael. “Rajiv Shah’s USAID legacy” devex. February 12, 2015. Accessed August 14, 2021. https://www.devex.com/news/rajiv-shah-s-usaid-legacy-85239 ^
  12. “Dr. Rajiv Shah” Linkedin. https://www.linkedin.com/in/drrajivjshah/ ^
  13. “US Equity and Economic Opportunity Initiative” Rockefeller Foundation. https://www.rockefellerfoundation.org/wp-content/uploads/US-Equity-and-Economic-Opportunity.pdf ^
  14. “Narrative” Boston University – Center for Anti-Racist Research. https://www.bu.edu/antiracism-center/narrative/ ^
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